Research and Development


At Portcullis, one of the more frequent assessments we perform are web application assessments. One of the main challenges we face during these assessments is to look for information that can either help escalate our privileges or allow us to gain access to different functionalities of the web application. Unauthorised access to functionality can often be considered an issue however, testing for this can also lead to information about the type of web server an application is running on, the underlying host and its version. Continue reading

As a pentester, there are days when you’ll get asked to look at the ordinary, and there are days that you’ll be asked to look at something more challenging. This week was full of days that met the latter criteria and not the former. Whilst I can’t share the scope, Portcullis was asked to examine a network implementation using the MPLS protocol and comment on the security, or otherwise, of it. Continue reading

When attempting to gain a foothold into a Windows Domain, an attacker will often attempt one or two likely passwords against every user in the Active Directory, a so-called horizontal password guessing attack. A small number of failed logons per user will usually not trigger a user account lockout policy and can be very effective. This post will provide an example solution to detecting such attacks in near real time, using only native Windows tools. Continue reading

(If you excuse the pun), everyone has a different view on Extended Stored Procedures:

  • Some might say they are stored procedures with extra functionality
  • Some might say they can cause problems to a database if misused
  • Some simply say they are stored procedures with a prefix of xp_

This post will hopefully give a better understanding of what Extended Stored Procedures are, how to identify them and how to restrict public access to them. Also this post will look at identifying permissions upon tables, views and functions to ensure it is not possible for users to directly modify data. Continue reading

We recently announced our sponsorship of EMF Camp 2014, were ready to go Portcullis flags in tow and will be heading on over to Milton Keynes to help get EMF ready.

While there we will not only be sponsoring the Lounge where people can come and enjoy a space to relax and drink beer and setting up Portcullis Village where people can visit us and exchange ideas but we will be having members of Portcullis hosting talks throughout the weekend. Continue reading