NKill aims to catalog vulnerabilities of every computer

The NKill database is updated daily and currently includes all .com, .org and .net domain names.

A security consultant is developing a search engine called NKill that aims to track the security vulnerabilities on every computer connected to the Internet, with the ability for users to search for vulnerable computers in a country or inside a specific company.

NKill, which currently covers all .com, .org and .net domain names, will be made available to the public within one month or so, said Anthony Zboralski, founder of Bellua Asia-Pacific, speaking Wednesday at the Hack In The Box Security Conference in Dubai.

Compiling a record of all of the vulnerabilities on every computer requires a TCP port scan of the entire Internet, a process that can take between eight and 16 hours using a 100M bps connection, Zboralski said.

These scans return detailed information, called banners, that include the version numbers of operating systems and applications that are running on each computer or server. While this information allows researchers to determine what vulnerabilities the computers have, it doesn't tell them who owns the computer.

"The main problem with scanning the Internet is that you end up with a bunch of IP addresses, but if you want to know if one of your customers is using one of these addresses it's really difficult," Zboralski said. "We could scan the entire Internet, but we didn't know which companies were vulnerable."

NKill solves this problem by matching IP addresses with domain names and the companies that use them. The database currently includes 102 million domain names and is updated daily. Users can search the database for computers with a specific vulnerability or search by company to identify vulnerabilities that affect its computers.

The database also tracks how vulnerabilities change over time, giving users a way to see how companies patch and maintain their systems over time or compare the level of computer security between different companies, Zboralski said.

Down the road, Zboralski hopes to make NKill an open-source project and plans to add more features, such as an iPhone application for mobile access and an API (application programming interface) that allows NKill to be integrated with other tools. He's also looking for a way to integrate whois data with NKill that would allow researchers to have a more detailed picture of all of the domains operated by a company or government.

"It would also be cool to show where the machines are using Google Maps," he said, adding that he's looking for volunteers to help out with the project.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags internetvulnerability disclosurenkill

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Sumner Lemon

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?