Automatic RootKit scanning using “chkrootkit”

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Scanning servers for presence of any hidden RootKit was always an important role of system administration but recently discovery of Linux Ransomeware (luckily fix too) has highlighted the importance of it and also motivated me to write something about it. So what I have come with?

chkrootkit is among mostfamous and widely used tool for the detection of rootkits so I decided to write a script which take care of the installation, scanning and the report. The installation is pretty easy and quickly but why I wrote the script?

Usually when smart hackers are able to inject rootkit in server they also scan the system for the presence of AntiRootKit and if they found they replace it with hacked version of tool, but they are not done yet as they also replace your system binaries (ls, ps, egrep, awk etc) which Antirootkit tools uses hence by using the modified binaries Antirootkit tools fail to detect the presence of any rootkit and you think that you are safe.

So what script does?

The script download the latest version of chkrootkit, compile it, download safe versions of my system libraries (Ubuntu 14.04.3 LTS, which you need to replace with your own as you should not be using mine on your servers), scan the system and send its report on your email. As we don’t want hackers to know that we are using antirootkit when everything is done the script also remove the traces of chkrootkit installation and anything related. Lastly remove itself (the bash script) from filesystem and clear history. You can find the script here

Once the script downloaded you need to execute it as below

./chkrootkit.sh && history -c && history -w

Notes: Before using the script you should also review your hosts file (/etc/hosts) for any malformed entries as that way hacker can lead you to its own website and download modified version of chkrootkit.

Don’t install any cron of it as it will help hacker to detect the presence of antirootkit tool.

Update: If you are receiving “chkrootkit: can’t find `ssh’” error then its a bug in current release and you can find additional details here.

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