Akamai Diversity
Home > Ryan Barnett

Recently by Ryan Barnett

Part 2: The Dark Side of APIs

Ryan Barnett, Principal Security Researcher, Akamai

Elad Shuster, Senior Security Researcher, Akamai

During its research into Credential Abuse attack campaigns, Akamai's threat research team conducted an analysis of web logins to gain insights into how widespread the adoption of API-based logins is and whether or not this trend also affects attackers and attack campaigns.  It will come as no surprise that API-based logins are highly targeted by credential abuse attackers for a variety of reason.

 

The Dark Side of APIs: Part 1, API Overview

Ryan Barnett, Principal Security Researcher, Akamai

Elad Shuster, Senior Security Researcher, Akamai

 

API Overview

Application Programming Interfaces (API) are a software design approach which enables software and system developers to integrate with other systems based on a defined set of communication methods. APIs serve as software building blocks and allow for software reuse - essentially allowing fast development of new systems based on existing capabilities.

WordPress Web API Vulnerability

On Tuesday, February 1, 2017, security vendor Sucuri disclosed a severe vulnerability in the WordPress REST API in versions prior to 4.7.2. The vulnerability allows for remote, unauthenticated and easily automated modification of blog post and page content by manipulating a parameter payload.  Sucuri, Inc. notified Akamai of this vulnerability in advance of the public disclosure, which allowed the Threat Research team to internally confirm exploitability and to develop a new rule for Kona Site Defender designed to protect customers from this vulnerability.  It's important to understand the new Wordpress REST API before we discuss the technical details of the vulnerability.

I am scheduled to give a security talk next week at the Gartner Security Summit entitled: Web Application Defender's Field Report.  In the talk, I will be covering statistics and technical details of web application attacks from our just released State of the Internet (SOTI) Report for Q1 2016.  One of the more interesting details of the report centers around the analysis of massive Account Takeover (ATO) attack campaigns that targeted two of our customers.