New Year, New Analyzers

Dear fellow incident handlers and cybercrime fighters around the world, the galaxy, the known and the unknown universe, first and foremost, all TheHive Project’s team would like to wish a wonderful new year 2019 to you and to your cherished relatives. We truly hope that eagles, pandas, kittens, babars, bears and all sorts of animals will stay out of the way. And remember that you don’t need to go bankrupt by purchasing so-called Next Gen™ magical solutions that work only when there’s a full moon and the page number of the book you are currently reading is 42 to investigate threats 😉

We would like to begin the year by introducing version 1.15.0 of Cortex analyzers, bringing the total number of analyzers to a whopping 113! And thanks to Kyle Parrish, this release improves the Mailer responder to allow you to specify a custom port number for your SMTP server and adds a new one to blacklist observables on Cisco Umbrella utilizing the Enforcement API. The Cisco Umbrella Blacklister responder will then add the tag Umbrella:blockedto the observable.

Cortex-Analyzers 1.15.0 also include fixes and enhancements for Eml_Parser, IBM X-Force, Fortiguard, and Shodan. Most of these modifications were contributed by our continuously growing user community. Thanks to all of those who help us in our mission to provide free and open source security incident response tools to the masses!

Please read the relevant sections in the Cortex installation guide to install or update your analyzers and responders in order to benefit from all this sweet & tasty honey.

New Analyzers

The following analyzers have been added:

Cyberprotect

This analyzer lets you query the Cyberprotect ThreatScore service for domains and IP addresses. No configuration is needed and it can be used out of the box.

TheHive displays the analyzer results as follows:

Have I Been Pwned

The HIBP_Query analyzer lets you check email addresses on Have I Been Pwned. You can use an optional parameter to include unverified breaches in the search results. Otherwise, it can be used without any additional configuration.

When called from TheHive, results would display as such:

PatrOwl

As it name states, The Patrowl_GetReport analyzer will let you get the current PatrOwl report for a FQDN, a domain name or an IP address. You need a running PatrOwl instance or to have access to one to use the analyzer.

If you fire it from TheHive, it would display results as follows:

SecurityTrails

This analyzer comes in two flavors in order to get Whois data and Passive DNS details using SecurityTrails. To use both flavors, you will need an account for the service to retrieve the associated API key, which you need to configure the analyzers.

SecurityTrails_Passive_DNS displays results in TheHive as follows:

The Whois variant produces reports such as:

Cisco Umbrella

In addition to Cisco Umbrella Investigate, you can now query the Umbrella Reporting API for recent DNS queries and their status for a domain name using the new Umbrella_Report analyzer.

New Shodan Flavors

In addition to Shodan_Host and Shodan_Search, which allow you to obtain Shodan information on a host and the search results for a domain name, now you can get domain resolutions (Shodan_DNSResolve), obtain scan history results for an IP address (Shodan_Host_History), get information on a domain (Shodan_InfoDomain) and the reverse DNS resolutions for an IP address (Shodan_ReverseDNS).

DomainTools

The following DomainTools flavors were added to this release:

  • DomainTools_HostingHistory: get a list of historical registrant, name servers and IP addresses for a domain.
  • DomainTools_ReverseIPWhois: get a list of IP addresses which share the same registrant information. It applies to a mail, IP, or domain.

Moreover, please note that DomainTools_WhoisLookup now handles IP addresses in addition to domains and provides parsed results. DomainTools_WhoisLookup_IP is thus not needed anymore. Instead, DomainTools_WhoisLookupUnparsed has been added to do the same as DomainTools_WhoisLookup, except that the output results are unparsed.

Cerana 0.9 and Cortex 2.0.4 are Out!

We are proud to announce the immediate availability of Cerana 0.9 (TheHive 3.0.9) and Cortex 2.0.4. These hotfix releases address a number of issues and we encourage you to update your current installation at your earliest opportunity. For your comfort and sanity. Seriously.

We also took this opportunity to update Cortex analyzers to fix issues with CIRCL Passive SSL, Hybrid Analysis, and the Joe Sandbox URL Analysis template. Moreover, we have updated the cortexutils library to set the taxonomy level to info if it is invalid. To upgrade cortexutils​ to 1.2.4:

sudo pip install -U cortexutils && sudo pip3 install -U cortexutils

To update your Cortex analyzers:

cd /path/to/Cortex-analyzers && git pull

Note: the Bluecoat analyzer was removed since it does not comply with the updated Terms of Service of Symantec Web Pulse SiteReview. Symantec does no longer permit programmatic querying of the service.

Fixes in Cerana 0.9

  • #527: display long reports when the analyst clicks on the corresponding short reports. Meh!
  • #541: make the drop-down menu for case templates scroll when there is a truckload of them.
  • #452: prevent WSAPI failure.
  • #531: fix naming inconsistencies in the Live Stream.
  • #530: correct an error when trying to analyze a filename using the Hybrid Analysis analyzer.
  • #543: generate an error if unable to contact Cortex.
  • #518: merge observable sightings when merging cases.
  • #535: fix the tag color of the PhishTank analyzer which was transparent under certain conditions.

Fixes in Cortex 2.0.4

  • #89: let a read,analyze user change or display their API key.
  • #91: sort analyzers by name.
  • #92: redirect users to the index page when they click on the Cortex logo.
  • #93: under the Organization > Configurations page, the UI displays wrong green checkmarks for empty configurations.
  • #94: orgadmin users are not able to update their organization’s users after the users are created. The UI doesn’t display any error message.
  • #95: avoid ‘lax programming’, Nabil style😜, and strictly filter the list of analyzers in the Run dialog.
  • #90: fix Python dependency errors in docker.

Support

Something does not work as expected? You have troubles installing or upgrading? Spotted new bugs? No worries, please open issues on GitHub or comment on existing ones, join our user forum, contact us on Gitter, or send us an email at support@thehive-project.org. We are here to help.

CorrectionApril 14, 2018
An earlier version of this post did not mention that the Bluecoat analyzer was removed in the latest Cortex Analyzers repository release.

Cortex 2: a Sneak Peek

Unless you’ve been living in a cave with no Internet connection during the last year or so, you certainly know a thing or two about Cortex, TheHive’s perfect sidekick, which allows you to analyze observables, at scale, using its 30+ analyzers.

As of this writing, the latest version of Cortex is 1.1.4. Cortex can be queried using its Web UI for quick assessment of an observable. But the true power of Cortex is unleashed when the engine is queried through its REST API, either from TheHive (which can leverage multiple Cortex instances), from alternative SIRPs (Security Incident Response Platforms), Threat Intelligence Platforms and programs thanks to Cortex4py. Indeed, when Cortex is called through the API, it can analyze large sets of observables. Each analysis generates a job. Jobs are queued on first-created, first-executed basis.

However, Cortex 1 has three limitations:

  1. It does not support authentication. If you install it and don’t shield it from abuse (using a firewall for example), anyone can submit analysis jobs and consume your query quotas for subscription-based, commercial services, for example. Non-CSIRT/CERT/SOC personnel or threat actors can also view all the jobs you’ve executed (what observables you have analyzed, using which analyzers and what the associated results were).
  2. It does not support rate-limiting. All it takes to ruin your quotas is an unexperienced analyst who’d create a case in TheHive from a MISP event containing thousands of attributes, select them all from the newly created case, and run them through various Cortex analyzers.
  3. It has no persistence. If you restart the Cortex service or the host it runs on, all your analysis results will disappear. Please note that if you query Cortex from TheHive, the latter will keep a copy of all the reports generated by the analyzers.

Moreover, analyzer configuration is not as easy as we’d like it to be. Enters Cortex 2.

Authentication, Organizations, Configuration and Rate Limiting

Cortex 2, due for release in February 2018, almost a year after the release of the first version, will support all the authentication methods TheHive supports: LDAP, Active Directory, local accounts, API keys and/or SSO using X.509 certificates (an experimental feature as of this writing).

Once created, users will be associated to an organization. Each organization has its own configuration: which analyzers are enabled, associated API keys and/or authentication credentials for services (VirusTotal, PassiveTotal, MISP, …) and a query quota.

For example, if you have an overall quota on VT for 10,000 queries/month, you can limit the number of queries to 5000 for org A, 3000 for org B and leave 2000 for other uses. Rate limits can be configured per month or per day.

Screen Shot 2017-12-15 at 17.16.06
Cortex 2 — Architecture

More on Organizations

Organizations will be ideal for multi-tenant Cortex instances deployed, for a example, by the central CSIRT of a large company. They can then create orgs for their regional SOCs. Commercial teams such as MSSPs will also be able to use a single instance to serve all their customers.

Graphical Interface Enhancements

Administrators will not have to edit /etc/cortex/application.conf by hand to enable and configure analyzers per org. They will be able to do so from the Web UI. The Web UI will also allow them to manage users, orgs and authentication tokens when applicable.

Report Persistence and Freshness

Cortex 2 will use ES 5 for storage, like TheHive. That way, you will no longer lose your existing jobs when you reboot the Cortex host or restart the service. You will also be able to query historical results to monitor changes and so on. We will also add an optional parameter to make Cortex 2 to serve the latest report generated by an analyzer if it is called again, on the same observable in the last X seconds or minutes. That way, we’ll avoid running the same queries again and again for the same observable and thus consuming quotas and CPU and storage resources.

Pricing

Cortex 2 is a significant development over Cortex 1 … but it’ll still cost you nothing as it will remain free and open source. We could feel you itching when you started reading this paragraph. Chill out! But if you are willing to support the project, you can donate to Creative Source, the non-profit organization we have created to sustain TheHive, Cortex and Hippocampe in the long run. Interested? Contact us at support@thehive-project.org then.