Next Generation War-Dialing Tool On Tap

March 6, 2009 – 7:22 AM

War-dialing is back, and it’s not limited to finding modems anymore. Renowned researcher HD Moore is putting the final touches on his latest project — a telephone auditing tool that also finds PBXes, dial tones, voicemail, faxes, and other phone line connections for security assessment, research, or inventory.

This is not your father’s war-dialer: The so-called WarVOX is free, Linux-based software (no telephony hardware necessary) that uses voice over IP services to place calls. It looks at the audio in a call and is much faster than old-school war-dialing, scanning more than 1,000 phone numbers per hour over a residential broadband connection, and up to 10,000 in eight hours.

Moore says WarVOX is aimed at security auditors and penetration testers looking for a faster and cheaper way to detect phone system vulnerabilities. “Right now, the target audience for WarVOX is anyone who currently uses legacy war-dialing tools and is frustrated by the amount of time and money it takes to perform the audit,” Moore says.

Traditional war-dialing has been on the decline in the broadband age. “Most security service providers that offer penetration tests still perform war-dialing for their clients. However, as a rule war-dialing has been a declining trend as fewer and fewer systems are left connected to modems,” Moore says.

WarVOX, he says, is simple to use and can provide a wealth of security information for organizations looking at their phone-line security posture. PBX voice system lines, for example, can harbor security holes that could put an enterprise at risk. “After playing with WarVOX over the last few weeks, I was surprised at how many lines I have found that expose some sort of security risk,” Moore says. “This includes the administrative interfaces to PBXes, lines that drop you to a fresh dial tone after a dozen rings, internal directories for large companies, and tons of sensitive information.”


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