The so-called honeypot is one of the most exciting concepts in the field of IT security. The honeypot is designed to specifically attract attackers - and thereby protect the sensitive data in the corporate network.
The so-called honeypot is one of the most exciting concepts in the field of IT security. The "honey trap" is designed to specifically attract attackers - and thereby protects the sensitive data in the corporate network.
The honeypot is a popular method of luring (potential) attackers away from their target, so to speak. But what exactly is such a honeypot? In a way, it is a kind of "dummy target". With the help of the honeypot, hackers and other attackers think that they have already reached their target. In this way, potential cyberattacks can often be averted, which in turn increases IT security. Important: Unlike classic security platforms or intrusion detection systems, the aim here is not just to ward off cyber attacks. Rather, the attackers should "fall into the honey trap" here, so it is possible to gain information about their actions. IT experts can then analyze the hackers' strategy. This knowledge in turn forms the basis for a successful vulnerability assessment. In order to succeed in this endeavor, companies must isolate their honeypot server in a targeted manner.
The term honeypot refers to a dummy target that distracts attackers from their real goal. However, the term does not originate in IT security: it is based on the consideration that bears are more likely to fall into a set trap if you set a honeypot in it.
The honeypot is an important measure in the field of IT security. With the help of the honeypot, it is possible to better understand the behavior of the attackers. Thus, the honeypot is an alternative to other conventional security strategies. It offers the following advantages:
However, the honeypot in IT poses three major dangers:
Honeypots react in a similar way to productive systems. This ensures that the attacker does not recognize the honey trap as such. An important criterion for this is, for example, the degree of interactivity.
The high-interaction honeypot is not a simple simulation. Rather, it is a real system with real functionalities. This makes it more complex to operate and requires sufficient monitoring. Otherwise, the hacker may succeed in hijacking this honey trap and then use the server for further attacks. Low-interaction honeypots are different. They simulate individual functions or services, but are not a real system. Accordingly, the use of these honeypots is much simpler and less complex.
The OWASP Mobile Top 10 contains a variety of potential vulnerabilities that pose a threat to the corporate network. Ideally, the honeypot redirects the attacks to the non-production system. The use of honeypots has proven effective in the following cases:
A honeypot for IT security can be set up quickly, but it requires good planning. A total of four steps are necessary before you can distract the attacker from his real target.
Setting up a honeypot requires a server. However, since the honey trap requires few resources, low-powered hardware is perfectly sufficient. However, with physical honey traps, it is important that they remain isolated from the rest of the network.
As with pentests, the use of honeypots requires sufficient planning and a sound concept. Detailed documentation, as is common in security assessments, is also useful when using honeypots.
For the successful use of a honeypot, a well thought-out configuration is necessary. The easiest way to do this is with the help of a security expert - such as Turingpoint. Finally, the honeypot should not be too easy to access. Otherwise, attackers could become suspicious.
To test the honeypot, companies slip into the role of the hacker themselves. An alternative may be bug bounty hunting or a contracted ethical hacker. After a minimum amount of activity in the honeypot, it is essential to monitor and analyze the server logs.
There are different types of honeypot software that can be used in everyday business, as the following examples show. Among the most popular variants are: