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With the advent of the constantly connected computers (not only the Internet) the attack surface has increased immensely. At the same time the user machines became as powerful as the servers were. However, there was very little done to educate computer professionals to detect, prevent and cope intrusions or penetration attacks. Kali Linux Network Scanning Cookbook can serve very well as one to close the gap.

A little on Kali Linux: it is a specialized distribution for penetration testing and forensics purposes. It got a lot of traction lately in the penn-testing and security pros circles. As one of the less subtle features, it runs always under the super user rights and typically is installed as a VM guest OS.

Let me tell, I was shocked the book counted 450 + pages! This is how much insight and tooling actually was created to harden your computing infrastructure (jargon used by security pros, meaning making your systems less vulnerable). It is hard to imagine an average practitioner would harness each in one’s daily use, but I would to strive to. And I advocate looking in details into every applicable offering. Besides, the book uses a lot of Python code, thus the reader shall make sure one is familiar and feels comfortable performing some coding as well using basic text editors as Nano and VI. If the reader ever decides to prepare for the book I would recommend a good book on Learning Python and another from Packt on VI – Hacking VIM.

Justin being a very experienced professional delivers the material at a very detailed level, in depth, with a lot of examples and in a very digestible format. If I am not mistaken several dozens of tools are covered in his book. I think this is unprecedented!

I liked the most the chapter on TCP scanning, it was both fun and insightful. The other topic I enjoyed and trust can apply at work as a data guy is the SQL Injection with sqlmap. Fingerprinting and ghost OS detection were new to me. The familiar, but impossible to not to get in touch with tools discussed in the book are matasploit, fping and SNMPWalk. Frankly, most tools were totally new to me and I was able to gain a lot of knowledge out of this book.

I rated this book as 5 out of 5 – there seems to be nothing that can be taken out of the book nor added. A great read, highly recommend it!

Disclaimer: I was given a free electronic copy of the book by the publisher for the sole purpose of publishing a review.

Posted on Thursday, November 13, 2014 4:53 PM | Back to top

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