Monthly Archives: July 2017

Automated posting on Vkontakte public pages using VK API and Python

Vk.com (Vkontakte) is the most popular social network Russia and Ex-USSR with 430+ million users. Originally it was a Facebook clone. But now, after 10 years of development, these two services are quite different from each other.

Traditional advantages of vk.com – huge amount of free music and video. The service allows users to upload and share files and for a long time was quite tolerant to piracy. In 2016 Mail.Ru Group, Vkontakte parent company, has solved all problems with major music labels and  now works closely with the rights holders.

Unlike Facebook, VKontakte has very efficient features for creating communities: public pages (blogs) and groups (open and closed web-forums). In VK communities you can easily share news, photo, audio, video, text files in different formats, create discussions topics and wiki-pages. When I was studying at the University in 2003-2009, to share information in a study group we needed to create our own website and phpBB-based forum. Now practically all students simply use VKontakte groups for this. Unlike Facebook, VKontakte shows all content in groups as is, without hiding and filtering.

With reach automation capabilities, you can do various interesting things based on VK. For a start, I decided to post all annotations from my https://avleonov.com blog to https://vk.com/avleonovcom Vkontakte page. I created this page in web GUI and filled it with content automatically using my own python scripts.

Creating a new application

I want to work with Vkontakte from my Python scripts. So, I will need to create a new Standalone Application for this. You can do it here: https://vk.com/editapp?act=create

vk new application

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Petya, M.E.Doc and the problem of trust

I’ve already mentioned in “Petya the Great and why *they* don’t patch vulnerabilities“, that NotPetya ransomware seems trivial from Vulnerability Management point of view. It uses known Windows vulnerabilities, that were patched by Microsoft long time ago.

Despite of this, I was really interested in M.E.Doc (servers were confiscated by Ukrainian police and website is not operational) role in the initial phase of malware spreading. In my opinion, we have a pretty interesting example of an attack vector, that will be very hard to detect and mitigate. And moreover, it’s once again shows that protected perimeter won’t be a panacea anymore.

m.e.doc

M.E.Doc – My Electronic Document Circulation System. “m.e.doc” sounds like the word, that mean “honey” in Russian and Ukrainian. That’s why all these bees in promo materials.

M.E.Doc is an Document Circulation System very popular in Ukraine. It makes possible to send reports to the government authorities in electronic form. It can be used in any organization. I can even imagine situation when usage of this kind of software may be even mandatory. Now the researchers [Eset, Dr.Web] say that M.E.Doc servers sent updates with backdoors  to the customers.

This backdoor has abilities:

  • Data collection for accessing mail servers
  • Arbitrary commands execution in the infected system
  • Running any executables
  • Downloading arbitrary files to the infected computer
  • Uploading arbitrary files to a remote server
  • Identify the exact organization using EDRPOU number.

I don’t really care about technical details about this backdoor. For me it’s enough that malicious code was on official server of the vendor and was spread to legitimate customers. Boom!

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