Penetration Test: The Rules
The purpose of the penetration test is to provide you with some
experience in the practise of computer security, to teach you how to analyze
systems for security problems, and to give you experience in detecting and
preventing exploitation of flaws. You will work in groups, with 3 to 4 people
in a group; this will enable you to brainstorm, and to bring different
perspectives and experiences to the problem.
Your goal in this exercise is to acquire superuser status.
The rules for the penetration test are simple.
You must use the Flaw Hypothesis Methodology as discussed in class. Where
you get the information needed to hypothesize flaws is up to you.
You are not allowed to use social engineering techniques. You cannot try to
trick, bribe, extort, or swindle your way in (or any variant thereof).
- You may not ask for help from other sources. You
are free to use help
you can obtain passively. For example, it's okay to look in the archives of the
bugtraq mailing list, but it's not okay to post a message to bugtraqs asking
You must keep written logs of your work. In particular, for each
hypothesized flaw, you must record a high-level summary, a detailed description
of the hypothesized flaw, its priority (or severity), how you could test for
it, how an attacker could exploit it, and where you heard about it or what
made you think of it. You are free to include other information, but you must
keep the above at a minimum.
If you test by attacking, you must keep a log of every command you type, and
the inputs and outputs, and their affect. If you can script the session, that
is fine (but do print out the script).
The system is a Sun SparcStation 1 running Solaris 2.5.1. Its IP address
is 126.96.36.199, and its name is ecs253.cs.ucdavis.edu. We will
not put this name in the DNS or mail servers; you
must get to it using the IP address.
You can get this document in
Send email to
Department of Computer Science
University of California at Davis
Davis, CA 95616-8562
Page last modified on 5/2/97