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I work in computer/network security. In order to really

become an expert in that...
I work in computer/network security. In order to really become an expert in that field, I need to have an intimate understanding of the C programming language. This helps to do tasks like code auditing, hardware/software vulnerability assessment, and reverse engineering. It also helps the security professional write unique exploits, or ways to develop stronger penetration tests. I've learned the basics of the C language, but I'm not sure where to go from here. Do you have any suggestions?
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Answered in 4 minutes by:
1/13/2018
Martin
Martin, Computer Hardware Engineer
Category: Programming
Satisfied Customers: 3,093
Experience: 10+ Years Experience CCNA Network Engineer A+ Net+ Linux & Windows OS C++ Programming
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If you already work in computer/network security then it's possible you already know more than I in this topic but I can give you some suggestions if you like.

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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
Any suggestions would be great, but perhaps I should reword the question. I know the basics of C, but i'm looking to advance my knowledge. I want to be able to write networking applications and audit code for security vulnerabilities. What kind of C programming topics should I focus on to achieve those goals?

Aside from C, are you familiar with any other languages that may relate to this subject?

For example: ASM - you can start off with 8086 to get a basic understanding of the registers and then move on to 32/64 bit which is a little more complex but they play a large role in C/C++ for dll injecting etc.

Another language I would look into is Python as it is quite powerful when it comes to pen testing.

There's a good website which goes through coding but with a pen-testing/hacking focus:

https://www.hackerrank.com

They give you little bits of homework every day.

Another good thing is they also include SQL which is useful for hacking databases.

If you need to explore more about SQL injection, I recommend you take a look at SQLmap (comes for both Windows and Linux but is way more useful in Linux).

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Another set of tools I would look into are W32damn, hiew and cheat engine.

They're not for network related hacking but they'll give you an inside view of how software uses the memory to do what it does in the background (knowledge of ASM comes in handy).

You can literally target a serial code box and follow the jumps (check this link out) to see where it's going. Then you just change the action it takes upon verification to your liking.

Once you've got a good understanding of this, you can look into network related software like WPE Pro which lets you edit packets.

For example, on an online game, you can figure out which packet requests force the gaming server to increase your credits, or spawn an item in your inventory and you can re-send it following the packet sequence algorithm.

All this will give you the required knowledge for what you're after.

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Let me know if this helps!

Martin
Martin, Computer Hardware Engineer
Category: Programming
Satisfied Customers: 3,093
Experience: 10+ Years Experience CCNA Network Engineer A+ Net+ Linux & Windows OS C++ Programming
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Customer reply replied 5 months ago
I'll have to check out these tools you've listed. I have a better understanding of what direction I need to take now. Thank you. I'm just kicking myself because I've always feared the Assembly language. It looks daunting. I'll check out the links you've provided and go from there. Thank you again for everything Martin. I really appreciate it.

You're more than welcome.

Just to clarify, in one of the last 3 tools I mentioned I made a typo, it's W32dasm.

Those 3 tools work in conjunction.

I'm glad I was of help, have a lovely weekend!

Martin

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