- Searching for Secrets
This article has been published in issue 4/2005 of the hakin9 magazine.
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- Searching for Secrets
oogle serves some 80 percent of all search queries on the Internet, mak- ing it by far the most popular search
engine. Its popularity is due not only to excel- lent search effectiveness, but also extensive querying capabilities. However, we should also remember that the Internet is a highly dynamic medium, so the results presented by Google are not always up-to-date - some search results might be stale, while other relevant resources might not yet have been visited by Googlebot (the automatic script that browses and indexes Web resources for Google).
Table 1 presents a summary of the most important and most useful query operators along with their descriptions, while Figure 1 shows document locations referred to by the operators when applied to Web searches. Of course, this is just a handful of examples - skil- ful Google querying can lead to much more interesting results.
Hunting for Prey
Google makes it possible to reach not just publicly available Internet resources, but also some that should never have been revealed.
Information which should be protected is very often publicly available, revealed by careless or ignorant users. The result is that lots of confidential data is freely available on the Internet
- just Google for it.
What You Will Learn...
• how to use Google to find sources of personal information and other confidential data,
• how to find information about vulnerable sys- tems and Web services,
• how to locate publicly available network de- vices using Google.
What You Should Know...
• how to use a Web browser,
• basic rules of operation of the HTTP protocol.
About the Author
Michał Piotrowski holds an MA in IT and has many years' experience in network and system administration. For over three years he has been a security inspector and is currently work- ing as computer network security exper t at one of the largest Polish financial institutions. His free time is occupied by programming, cr yp- tography and contributing to the open source community.
Table 1. Google query operators
restricts results to sites within the specified domain