Short Bytes: A ping packet can also be malformed to perform denial of service attack by sending continuous ping packets to the target IP address. A continuous ping will cause buffer overflow at the target system and will cause the target system to crash.We often use the CMD command “Ping” to mostly check if a server or a gateway is up and running. But, ping command can also be used for some other purposes.
If we look at the basic level, then a ping packet is generally of size 56 bytes or 84 bytes (including IP header as well). However, a ping packet can also be made as large as up to 65536 bytes.
Well, that’s the negative side of the ping packet. When we increase the size of the ping packet unnaturally, forming a malformed ping packet to attack a computer system, this type of attack is called “Ping of death” attack.
How Ping of Death attack works?
Not all computers can handle data larger than a fixed size. So, when a ping of death packet is sent from a source computer to a target machine, the ping packet gets fragmented into smaller groups of packets.
One fragment is of 8 octets size. When these packets reach the target computer, they arrive in fragments. So, the target computer reassembles the malformed packets which are received in chunks. But, the whole assembled packet causes buffer overflow at the target computer.
This buffer flow often causes the system crash making the system more vulnerable to attack.
Once the system becomes more vulnerable to attack, it allows more attacks like the injection of a trojan horse on the target machine.
A simple tutorial on how to perform DoS attack using ping of death using CMD:
Disclaimer: This is just for educational purposes. It’s nothing great but you can use it to learn.
Here are the steps:
- Open Notepad
- Copy the following text on the notepad
ping <IP Address> -l 65500 -w 1 -n 1
In the above command, replace <IP Address> with an IP address.
- Save the Notepad with any name. Let’s say dos.txt
- Right click on the dos.txt and click on rename.
- Change the extension from .txt to .bat
- So, now the file name should be dos.bat
- Double click on it and you will see a command prompt running with a lot of pings.
Note: This command might not work on some systems.