A pipe is a block of shared memory that processes can use for communication and data exchange.
Named Pipes is a Windows mechanism that enables two unrelated processes to exchange data between themselves, even if the processes are located on two different networks. It's very simar to client/server architecture as notions such as a named pipe server and a named pipe client exist.
A named pipe server can open a named pipe with some predefined name and then a named pipe client can connect to that pipe via the known name. Once the connection is established, data exchange can begin.
This lab is concerned with a simple PoC code that allows:
creating a single-threaded dumb named pipe server that will accept one client connection
named pipe server to write a simple message to the named pipe so that the pipe client can read it
Below is the PoC for both the server and the client:
Below shows the named pipe server and named pipe client working as expected:
Worth nothing that the named pipes communication by default uses SMB protocol:
Checking how the process maintains a handle to our named pipe mantvydas-first-pipe:
Similary, we can see the client having an open handle to the named pipe:
We can even see our pipe with powershell:
Note that in order to impersonate the token of the client process you need to have (the server process creating the pipe) the SeImpersonate token privilege
It is possible for the named pipe server to impersonate the named pipe client's security context by leveraging a ImpersonateNamedPipeClient API call which in turn changes the named pipe server's current thread's token with that of the named pipe client's token.
We can update the the named pipe server's code like this to achieve the impersonation - note that modifications are seen in line 25 and below:
Running the server and connecting to it with the client that is running under [email protected] security context, we can see that the main thread of the named server pipe assumed the token of the named pipe client - offense\administrator, although the PipeServer.exe itself is running under ws01\mantvydas security context. Sounds like a good way to escalate privileges?