Hack The Box - Writeup

We are going to pwn WriteUp from Hack The Box.

Link : https://www.hackthebox.eu/home/machines/profile/192

Like always begin with our Nmap Scan.

Nmap Scan Results:

22/tcp open  ssh
80/tcp open  http

22/tcp open     ssh     OpenSSH 7.4p1 Debian 10+deb9u6 (protocol 2.0)
| ssh-hostkey: 
|   2048 dd:53:10:70:0b:d0:47:0a:e2:7e:4a:b6:42:98:23:c7 (RSA)
|   256 37:2e:14:68:ae:b9:c2:34:2b:6e:d9:92:bc:bf:bd:28 (ECDSA)
|_  256 93:ea:a8:40:42:c1:a8:33:85:b3:56:00:62:1c:a0:ab (ED25519)
80/tcp filtered http
Warning: OSScan results may be unreliable because we could not find at least 1 open and 1 closed port
Aggressive OS guesses: Linux 3.10 - 4.11 (92%), Linux 3.13 (92%), Linux 3.13 or 4.2 (92%), Linux 3.16 (92%), Linux 3.16 - 4.6 (92%), Linux 3.2 - 4.9 (92%), Linux 4.2 (92%), Linux 4.4 (92%), Linux 4.8 (92%), Linux 4.9 (91%)
No exact OS matches for host (test conditions non-ideal).
Network Distance: 2 hops
Service Info: OS: Linux; CPE: cpe:/o:linux:linux_kernel

Like always start from webpage.

It seems like there is fail2ban running which bans IP’s If we try to bruteforce webpages.

Fail2Ban is an intrusion prevention software framework that protects computer servers from brute-force attacks.

Since we cant bruteforce lets try some common directories.

We got a hint , there is another directory /writeup

While checking the source code found its running as CMS Made Simple

There is quite a lot of vulnerabilites since we dont know its version I started with sql injection because some are Authenticated

Copied the Script to my directory.After reading the instructions of how to use the exploit ,I started it

After sometime it gives us user and password lets login with them in ssh.

We Successfully Logged in

Privilege Escalation:

While checking its id

There is an uncommon staff

staff: Allows users to add local modifications to the system (/usr/local) without needing root privileges (note that executables in /usr/local/bin are in the PATH variable of any user, and they may “override” the executables in /bin and /usr/bin with the same name). Compare with group “adm”, which is more related to monitoring/security.

So Immediately I checked the path

Later I uploaded pspy so check for cronjob

pspy is a command line tool designed to snoop on processes without need for root permissions. It allows you to see commands run by other users, cron jobs, etc. as they execute. Great for enumeration of Linux systems in CTFs. Also great to demonstrate your colleagues why passing secrets as arguments on the command line is a bad idea.

While its started I did another ssh connection. When doing that ,there is something called run-parts running. From the $PATH I came to know it first checks in usr/local/bin and the file not available it moves to usr/bin If the path is not specified fully we can hijack it. In our case path is not fully specified. Since the PATH first searches in usr/local/bin we can create a file run-parts and get root.

I created one with perl reverse shell because there is already .pl file running.


Started listener on one terminal and started login in another machine our run-parts(reverse shell) gets executed.

Got Root!!