Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Mazur Bahawalanzai

Two days ago, I followed Mazur home. He lives in an apartment building in the old part of the city, a bad neighbourhood. He brought his computer with him and I suspect that he keeps working during the night. I didn't see him leave all evening and in the morning, he went back to the company with his laptop.

So yesterday, I found myself a local junkie, and offered him a reward to break into Mazur's apartment and bring me his laptop. It cost me only 200 Euro... I took the laptop home and analyzed it.

It seems the communications software Mazur wrote for the DFS space station uses very weak encryption. And be very weak I mean it really sucks. From his design documents, I've been able to gather that he uses XOR for performance reasons and a rolling key of only 4 ASCII characters!

Lucky for me, the space station is connected to the internet through a satellite communications provider. The hostname they use for the space station, which is called abraxas by the way, is The communications module can be acivated through "secure" connection to port 4373.

The communications module displays a banner with lots of spaces and '#' signs in it, which should make the decryption easier.

Oh, this morning I noticed that the police was fingerprinting Mazur's place after he reported the burglary. They tracked down the junkie (called Sid it seems) and locked him up. Noone believed his story ;)