Updated March 13, 2023
Introduction to Brute Force Attack
Brute Force Attack can be defined as the way to gain access over a website or a web server by successive repetitive attempts of various password combinations. This is done to capture the user’s data such as USERID, pin, etc.. in brute force software to generate consecutive password strengths; the software will also be developed with the given data. This is also done by introducing malicious software with the help of bots on the target site. Cyber-crime people mostly make this attack to gain personal or secure data for their own purpose.
Categories of Brute Force Attacks
There are two categories in Brute Force Attacks:
- White Hat Hacking
- Black Hat Hacking
1. White Hat Hacking
People who hack computers or servers or any other source for a good cause is called White Hat Hackers. Basically, white hat hackers hack systems to check the vulnerability of the system or software or application.
2. Black Hat Hacking
People who hack computers or servers or any other source for a bad cause are called black hat hackers. Basically, black hat hackers hack systems to steal sensitive data from the system or software, or application.
The work of the white hat hackers is to save sensitive data from black hat hackers. White hat hackers find the vulnerability of the system or software or application and solve issues.
Types of Brute Force Attack
The main purpose of this attack is to have access to personal and secure information. The methods to try are also many.
There are mainly two types of brute force attacks they are as follows:
1. Directory Guessing Brute Force Attack
The probability of these attacks is more on websites and web servers; for this, they use the directories/folders which are rarely used or hidden and then try to personalize them.
For example, If there is a bank named XYZ, which has a login page for users to perform various transactions. This directory attack allows an attacker to create a duplicate page and ask users to login with their credentials, and the user cannot differentiate between those websites. Once credentials are entered a software will be installed automatically, which helps them to have complete control of the page. This way, money can be transferred to anonymous accounts.
For this, they mainly focus on folders that have insecure software by guessing methods.
The most common guesses will be like:
2. Password Guessing Brute Force Attack
Password guessing attacks are most common in websites and web servers. In this, the attackers use vectors or software to compromise websites which involves trying multiple combinations of user IDs and passwords until they find one with the right data. Once entered, they can compromise the site with phishing or malicious software.
Most attacks are made by using the most commonly used user id and password combinations. They also manipulate the data related to the website to grab the details easily.
The main target is to find the right credentials to access the website so now let us know the most commonly attacked web pages:
- WordPress wp-admin/wp-login.php login page
- Generic/login pages
The purpose of a brute force attack is to gain access to a software or website or mobile application, or any other source. The word brute force itself states that it is a force attack to gain access to a software or website or any other source. Using Brute Force Attack, we can find usernames and passwords of the users forcibly.
How can the Brute Force Attack Happen?
To successfully accomplish a brute force attack, we need to find a vulnerability, and we need to implement our attacks to crack the password-protected website or application or server or any other source. Many basic and dynamic websites or servers, or applications will be hacked regularly to steal sensitive data. Big giant companies like Amazon, Facebook, and Google will check their vulnerabilities and solve their loopholes before being attacked. Less secured passwords can be hacked more easily than encrypted passwords. Companies before 2015 used to have normal passwords; from 2016, people started using encrypted passwords like hashed or md5 encrypted passwords, which are highly difficult to hack.
Motive Behind a Brute Force Attack
The motive behind a brute force attack is stealing sensitive data and making money out of it, which is really bad. Stealing sensitive data can lead a company to a loss or can even lead a whole country into the problem. People became smart, and people can hack some highly secured websites and applications like NASA, Facebook. Twitter etc.
What to do after a Brute Force Attack?
If someone steals sensitive data from your software or website, or server, First find the vulnerability on your server or system or application and solve it and then start tracing the hacker’s IP address who stole the data from your server or application. Check any other vulnerabilities are present on your site where they can enter into your site forcibly. Better to take prevention and securities before getting hacked.
How to Prevent it?
Before 2010 the attacks were so less, but from 2010 the attacks are increasing so fast; if the number of attempts crosses the limit, companies will block the account for a few mins or seconds so that the attacker cannot accomplish the attack successfully.
A Brute Force Attack is used to hack into a password-encrypted system or server or software, or application. Basically, we will get access to sensitive information without user or admin permission. These attacks are made by bad hackers who want to misuse the stolen data. Bearer of this attack keeps your website or app, or server vulnerability free. If you are really serious about hacking, become a white hat hacker and protect sensitive data from a black hat hacker.
This has been a guide to Brute Force Attack. Here we discuss the detailed concepts, types, and how to prevent brute force attacks. You can also go through our other suggested articles to learn more –