ARP spoofing (Address resolution protocol) is a hacking technique that causes network traffic to be redirected to the hacker. ARP spoofing is a form of attack in which an attacker transmits bogus Address Resolution Protocol (ARP) packets inside a Local Area Network. Its main premise is to exploit the lack of authentication in the ARP (LAN).
As a result, an attacker’s MAC address becomes linked to the IP address of a legal machine or server on the network. Rather than IP addresses, packets are transferred over the LAN utilising physical MAC addresses as the underlying network identity.
Any communication transmitted to that IP address will be routed to the attacker’s hardware instead of the true owner’s IP address once the attacker’s MAC address is put into a poisoned ARP table.
How does ARP spoofing work?
- It is meant to steal some data intended for the target victim.
- The attack is normally carried out with the aid of some tools.
- The attacker launches an ARP spoofing tool, such as Arpspoof, Cain & Abel, Arpoison, or Ettercap, and configures the tool’s IP address to match the victim’s IP subnet.
- Once the attacker has assigned an IP address to the IP subnet, it begins scanning the entire network for the IP and MAC addresses of all hosts on the subnetwork.
- The attacker then targets a victim and begins sending ARP packets via the Local Area Network (LAN), but the attacker substitutes the target’s MAC address with its own, but the IP address remains the same as the victim’s.
- The MAC address is used to communicate at the data connection layer, as mentioned in the last article regarding ARP.
- Because the MAC address has been faked and swapped with the attacker’s, packets intended for the victim are now diverted to the attacker.
- Once the attacker has gained access to the packets intended for the victim, it can execute a variety of attacks.
ARP Spoofing Attacks
Enterprises can be seriously harmed by ARP spoofing attacks. These assaults are used to steal sensitive information from the firm at their most basic level. Apart from that, this form of attack is frequently employed to aid other attacks, such as:
ARP Spoofing Detection, Prevention, and Protection
The following methods are recommended measures for detecting, preventing and protecting against these attacks:
- Packet filtering: As packets are transported across a network, packet filters inspect them. Packet filters are important for preventing ARP spoofing because they may filter out and block packets with incompatible source address information (packets from outside the network that show source addresses from inside the network and vice-versa).
- Avoid trust ties: As far as feasible, organisations should design protocols that do not rely on trust relationships. When trust relationships rely solely on IP addresses for authentication, attackers will find it much easier to launch ARP spoofing assaults.
- Use anti-spoofing software to detect ARP spoofing: Many applications are available to assist enterprises in detecting ARP spoofing attacks. These programmes verify and certify data before it is transferred, and they prevent data that appears to be faked.
- Cryptographic network protocols should be used: Secure communications protocols such as Transport Layer Security (TLS), Secure Shell (SSH), HTTP Secure (HTTPS), and others help against ARP spoofing attacks by encrypting data before transmission and authenticating it once it arrives.
The techniques employed in ARP spoofing can also be utilised to establish network service redundancy. Some software, for example, allows a backup server to send a gratuitous ARP request in order to take over for a failing server and provide redundancy invisibly.