This article is about Streamlining Exploit Development Processes Through Vulnerability and Exploit Databases .
An exploit is designed to take advantage of certain vulnerabilities in software products, hardware devices, digital tools or electronic devices. These exploits are software codes or sequences of commands that can cause abnormal behavior of computer networks, stand-alone digital devices, other software products and electronic tools. Vulnerabilities and bugs in these digital products and electronic tools result from, among other things, cross-platform compatibility issues or faulty code.
Streamlining Exploit Development Processes
On the other hand, the exploit can also be used to test and create workarounds for hardware devices and software products while effectively working with widely used OS versions. For example, exploits designed to test Structured Exception Handling (SAH) handlers on Microsoft Windows platforms may allow developers to test and implement consistent compatibility support into their hardware and software products for certain Windows systems.
To do this, developers can simply run the exploit on their target Windows platforms. In the event of an exception or error, they can then take note of the results provided by the “except” block in the exception handler. This allows them to revise or add new code to their hardware or software products to comply with the rules provided by the exception handler. This means they can prevent their products from triggering errors or exceptions on target Windows systems.
What is Exploit Development?
Simply put, exploit development is the process of creating an exploit. This practice can be done for legitimate or illegitimate purposes, depending on the goals of the exploit developer.
Criminal syndicates deploy exploit development campaigns to create hacking tools and malware. These illegitimate products exploit known (or often undiscovered) vulnerabilities and bugs in widely used computer network ports and protocols, standalone devices, electronic devices, and digital products such as operating systems and third-party software programs. Many exploits from these crime syndicates are designed to cause unintended behavior, take control, or covertly infiltrate networks, devices, and software products.
On the other hand, legitimate exploit development aims to test and design these exploits for research and development purposes. The main purpose of many legitimate exploit developers is to uncover unknown vulnerabilities and uncover unreported bugs. After all, it is the first step in developing code that can fix bugs and patch vulnerabilities in a software product, computer network, or electronic device.
What are vulnerability databases?
Many data security companies and web privacy organizations are developing vulnerability databases. These are mostly online or offline repositories that contain bugs and vulnerabilities in a large number of widely used software products, digital tools, and electronic devices. Many of these groups share these repositories with each other to accelerate the discovery of untested vulnerabilities in new or updated platforms, embedded digital tools, third-party software products, and hardware devices.
An example of this is NVD, which stands for National Vulnerability Database. It is used by the US National Government as a standards-based management platform for storing and updating impact metrics, checklists for security flaws in software and firmware components. There are also other types of vulnerabilities in this repository, which stores this information primarily using SCAP (Security Content Automation Protocol). This repository enables automated management of security measurement processes, compliance systems and vulnerability identification in certain products.
What are exploit databases?
Exploit databases, on the other hand, are mostly file and source code repositories for newly discovered and existing exploits found on certain platforms and their built-in tools, third-party software products, and electronic equipment. These databases allow developers to download, revise or reverse engineer and run these exploits in their own test environments. This greatly helps them to efficiently develop solutions such as bug fixes, security patches and updates to their products, device setup and network configuration.
Most of these vulnerability and exploit repositories are online and offline servers with their own file or source code sharing and content management platforms. These are integrated with groupware development logs, making it easier and faster for developers to track changes and revisions to these exploits and vulnerability lists. Other databases are part of the organization’s product development chain, making it easier and faster to perform tests against possible vulnerabilities and bugs in newly created products and updates.
An example of this is the Offensive Security Exploits Database. This is a CVE-compliant repository of security documentation, vulnerable applications, shellcode, and exploits. Penetration testers, system security developers, network engineers, and vulnerability researchers use this database to find and test various types of exploits. This includes web application exploits, denial of service (DoS) exploits, proof of concept (POC) exploits, remote exploits, local and privileged exploits.
The benefits of database vulnerabilities and exploits
These repositories help ensure the constant discovery of new vulnerabilities, bugs, and exploits. Many of these databases allow developers to add newly discovered vulnerabilities and bugs in certain software products, network ports and protocols, digital tools, and electronic devices to these vulnerability and exploit databases. This greatly contributes to the constant discovery of new problems in updated versions of widely used digital products and electronic devices.
These databases contribute to the rapid development and cost-effective distribution of bug fixes and vulnerability fixes for a wide range of software products, digital tools, network standards, and electronic devices. These allow developers to efficiently create solutions for newly discovered bugs, exploits and vulnerabilities. This is especially useful in today’s economy, as many products are launched every month, some of which are prone to exploiting vulnerabilities.
These vulnerability and exploit databases contribute significantly to more efficient testing, research and development goals. Most of these repositories allow developers to download and test exploits in these databases. Some providers of vulnerability and exploit databases also allow others to revise the code of these exploits to best suit their research and development goals or their specific testing purposes. Developers of legitimate exploits may also upload newly recoded or modified exploits to these repositories if others find them useful for their own goals.
These vulnerability and exploit databases can help improve the cost-effectiveness of exploit development processes. Electronic product manufacturers, software development groups, and network administrators can greatly benefit from readily available repositories of exploits, bugs, and vulnerabilities on online or offline servers with file or source code sharing capabilities and group content management platforms.
Vulnerability and exploit databases that are shared between multiple organizations and development groups can contribute to the constant discovery of new bugs and vulnerabilities in newly released or recently updated products. Allowing developers to cross-test and revise these exploits against existing bugs or potential vulnerabilities in their target platforms, software products, and hardware devices can help them improve their products much faster and better than simply relying on user-generated reports.
This, in turn, can accelerate the creation and efficient distribution of better fixes for new and old bugs and vulnerabilities in widely used platforms, embedded digital tools, third-party software products, and electronic devices. These databases of vulnerabilities and exploits can also contribute to network data security standards and web privacy protocols.
The illegal activities of cybercriminal syndicates can also be minimized or greatly slowed down through the successful exploitation of these vulnerability repositories and exploits. Most crime syndicates target known bugs and vulnerabilities to carry out their illegal activities. They also conduct their own research and development campaigns to discover new bugs and vulnerabilities. This means that the illegal operations of these crime syndicates can only be significantly thwarted by deploying faster and better systems for continuous discovery, accelerated development, and for simplified distribution of bug fixes and vulnerability patches.