ShellShock Detector for Bro

This script detects successful exploitation of the Bash vulnerability with CVE-2014-6271 nicknamed "ShellShock". It's more comprehensive than most of the detections around in that it's watching for behavior from the attacked host that might indicate successful compromise or actual vulnerability.

If a host is seen receiving an attack over HTTP, Bro will watch for that host to either download a dropper payload or send an ICMP ping. Many more mechanisms could show up, but this would cover most of the existing known response mechanisms. This script is configured by default to watch for files of mime type application/x-executable which would cover the dropper listed in the attack here:

Alternately if attackers are just testing with a ping command, this script will watch for a ping command from the victim shortly after an attack is detected.

This script will also add a tag to the "tags" field in the HTTP log for any requests that appear to be possible attacks. The content of the tag is: ShellShock::HIT.

For what it's worth, this script is cluster-aware and should work on Bro clusters just fine and should be ok to run operationally.


This script currently supports Bro 2.3, 2.4, and 2.5. Please file a ticket if this script is giving you trouble on any supported version of Bro.


This repository includes an example packet capture that exploits an example server named exploit.pcap. Here are the relevant logs that are output.


#separator \x09
#set_separator	,
#empty_field	(empty)
#unset_field	-
#path	notice
#open	2014-09-26-10-47-02
#fields	ts	uid	id.orig_h	id.orig_p	id.resp_h	id.resp_p	fuid	file_mime_type	file_desc	proto	note	msg	sub	src	dst	p	peer_descr	actions	suppress_for	dropped	remote_location.country_code	remote_location.region	remote_location.latitude	remote_location.longitude
#types	time	string	addr	port	addr	port	string	string	string	enum	enum	string	string	addr	addr	port	count	string	set[enum]	interval	bool	string	string	string	double	double
1411666207.583791	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	ShellShock::Scanner sent at least 1 CVE-2014-6271 exploit attempts in 0m0s.	Used payload: "() { :;}; /bin/ping -c1" :: against sample victim hosts:	-	-	-	bro	Notice::ACTION_LOG	3600.00000-
1411666207.588581	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	-	ShellShock::Exploit	High likelihood of successful CVE-2014-6271 exploitation against  Attack over HTTP and sent a ping to within 0.000 seconds of an attack.	Attack over HTTP and sent a ping to within 0.000 seconds of an attack.	-	-	-	bro	Notice::ACTION_LOG	3600.000000	F	-	-	-	-	-


#separator \x09
#set_separator	,
#empty_field	(empty)
#unset_field	-
#path	http
#open	2014-09-26-10-47-02
#fields	ts	uid	id.orig_h	id.orig_p	id.resp_h	id.resp_p	trans_depth	method	host	uri	referrer	user_agent	request_body_len	response_body_len	status_code	status_msg	info_code	info_msg	filename	tags	username	password	proxied	orig_fuids	orig_mime_types	resp_fuids	resp_mime_types
#types	time	string	addr	port	addr	port	count	string	string	string	string	string	count	count	count	string	count	string	string	set[enum]	string	string	set[string]	vector[string]	vector[string]	vector[string]	vector[string]
1411666207.583791	CC7s232GDnmtxZUly5	43616	80	1	GET	/exploitable.cgi	-	() { :;}; /bin/ping -c1	0	615	500	Internal Server Error	-	-	-	ShellShock::HIT	-	-	-	-	-	FgVgjb1GU12ixSuugc	text/html
#close	2014-09-26-10-47-02


bro-pkg refresh
bro-pkg install corelight/bro-shellshock


There are a couple of configuration variables.

## The number of apparent attacks a host must send for it to be 
## detected as ShellShock::Scanner.
const ShellShock::scan_threshold = 10 &redef;

## The period over which scanner detection is performed.
const ShellShock::scan_detection_period = 10min &redef;

These can be used to expand how long ShellShock scanned are watched for and the number of attacks that need to happen before they are declared to be scanning and have a notice created.


Seth Hall <>


Stephen Hosom   - Provided a fully exploiting packet capture.
Nick Weaver     - Valuable discussion on how shellshock is and isn't exploitable.
Vlad Grigorescu - Feature request after feature request.
Mike Patterson  - Suggesting to watch for shellscripts as a post-exploit dropper.

Package Version :