Posts Tagged: inj3ct0r

Nov 13

vBulletin Breach Prompts Password Reset

Forum software maker vBulletin is urging users to change their passwords following a recent breach of its networks. The attackers who claimed responsibility for the intrusion say they broke in using a zero-day flaw that is now being sold in several places online, but vBulletin maintains it is not aware of any zero-day attacks against current versions of its product.

vbulletinOn Thursday, Nov. 14, this publication received an email with several screen shots and a short note indicating that vBulletin had been hacked. The attackers claimed they had knowledge of a zero-day bug in versions 4.x and 5.x of vBulletin, and that they had used the same vulnerability to break into and

That same day, I reached out to both vBulletin and MacRumors. I heard immediately from MacRumors owner Arnold Kim, who pointed my attention to a story the publication put up last Monday acknowledging a breach.  Kim said MacRumors actually runs version 3.x of vBulletin, and that the hackers appear to have broken in using a clever cross-site-scripting attack.

“In VB3, moderators can post ‘announcements’  in the forum, and by default announcements allow HTML,” Kim explained. “The hacker or hackers were able to somehow get a moderator’s login password, and used that to embed Javascript in an announcement and waited for an administrator to load that page. Once that happened, the Javascript installed a plugin in the background that allowed [the attackers] to execute PHP scripts.”

Kim said the attackers in that case even came on the MacRumors forum and posted a blow-by-blow of the attack, confirming that the cause of the breach was a compromised moderator account. Kim said the person who left the comment was using the same Internet address as the attacker who hacked his forum, and that the moderator account that got compromised on MacRumors also had an account with the same name and password on

“Stop [blaming] this on the ‘outdated vBulletin software’,” the apparent culprit wrote. ” The fault lied within a single moderator. All of you kids that are saying upgrade from 3.x to 4.x or 5.x have no idea what you’re talking about. 3.x is far more secure than the latter. Just because it’s older, it doesn’t mean it’s any worse.”

On Saturday, Nov. 16, I heard back from vBulletin, which said it had just posted a note urging users to change their passwords, and that the company was not aware of any zero day bugs in its software. vBulletin didn’t say which version of its software was attacked, only that “our staging server was running a wide variety of versions of the software.” The vBulletin homepage says the site is powered by version 5.0.5.

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Dec 10, and Hacked, a German security forum that specializes in trading stolen credit cards and other purloined data, has been hacked by security vigilantes for the second time this year. Also waking up to “you’ve been owned” calling cards this Christmas are exploit database and, the home of Backtrack, an open source “live CD” distribution of Linux.

The hacks were detailed in the second edition of “Owned and Exposed,” an ezine whose first edition in May included the internal database and thousands of stolen credit card numbers and passwords from The Christmas version of the ezine doesn’t feature credit card numbers, but it does list the user names and hashed passwords of the forum administrators. The forum itself appears to be down at the moment.

Mati Aharoni, the main administrator for both and, confirmed that the hacks against his sites were legitimate. Shortly after my e-mail, Aharoni replied with a link to a short statement, noting that a hacking team called inj3ct0r initially took credit for the attack, only to find itself also targeted and shamed in this edition of Owned and Exposed.

“There’s nothing like having your butt kicked Christmas morning, which is exactly what happened to us today. We were owned and exposed, in true fashion,” Aharoni wrote. “Initially, the inj3ct0r team took ‘creds’ for the hack, which quickly proved false as the original ezine showed up – and now inj3ct0r (their new site) is no longer online. As a wise Chinese man once said: ‘do not anger one who has shell on your server’. The zine also mentioned other sites, as well as the ettercap project being backdoored.”

To his credit, Aharoni posted a link to the 2nd edition of Owned and Exposed.

“The irony of posting your zine in our papers section is not lost on us,” Aharoni wrote.

Update 10:40 p.m. ET: An earlier version of this blog post incorrectly identified one of the hacked domains as The blog post above has been corrected. My apologies for the confusion.