2021 Wrap-Up Top Articles and Videos


Here we are wrapping up 2021!  A ton of things have happened this year in security, I can't even begin to cover everything that has happened.  

Some stand-out security events that come to mind are Solarwinds, the global awareness of nation state cyber crime and very recently(as of this writing) log4j.

I have commented on a few of these events and I have been quite busy trying to keep up.  I want to share my top 5 articles this year along with my top 5 YouTube videos.

Thanks for reading and watching!


Why I chose "Hack the Box" over "Try Hack Me"

This year I signed up for HTB.  I did a trial of THM and I found that while both products are really good, HTB really pushed me to research on my own.  HTB pushed my Offensive security skills and even inspired me to create a playlist on my YouTube channel called #92MachineChallenge.  

The name comes from a list I found on the internet of 92 retired HTB machines that are recommended to complete before attempting your OSCP certification.


Python - Super Quick Port Scan

I really enjoy scripting and my preferred language to do so in is Python.  If you have been to my blog before you will notice that I have posted a number of articles on this topic.  I also enjoy port scanning, so my fourth highest visited article this year is a combination of both of these things!


Python and Shodan 2.0

"Python and Shodan 2.0" is actually a second more beefy article I wrote on the subject of the automating shodan.  The first article can be found here.  What is fun about 2.0 version is that it is additional functionality.  Check it out, it may be of use to you.


How to Start a Technology Blog

When I wrote this article I was in a very reflective mood.  I had just gone through months of struggling to get my blog monetized.  I had been rejected 3 times by Google and finally I made a minor change and was approved.  I was so relieved.  During this long process I had a tremendous amount of learning.  Looking back I am thankful for the rejections because it actually forced me to make changes to my blog that ultimately were really good.  I remember what it first looked like and I am happy with the way it has evolved.  

One (Most Popular Article of 2021!!)

Python Crypto Script: Send Secret Message

It's fun that this was my number one article this year.  Truly when it comes to encryption there are many better options then the one I have highlighted here.  However what this article was focusing on was a fun way to encrypt a secret message and send it to a friend.  The friend knowing the symmetric passcode would be able to decrypt the message.

I am currently working on a couple new ideas that fall along this same idea.

YouTube: RedBlueLabs


Wireshark Episode # 11 Detecting ARP Storm

On my channel I have a number of videos focusing on Wireshark.  This particular video focuses on the ARPs being blasted across the network.  A ton of ARP traffic can be a sign that a scan is occurring. 


Block Website PFBlockerNG

I use PFSense a ton in my own personal lab and when I am teaching networking and security in post secondary.  It is an awesome tool for learning proper networking and firewalls.  In addition to all the awesome built in features available to PFSense there are a many community built packages that are great.

One such package is "PFBlockerNG"  Popular things to do with PFBlocker is to block websites and to set up geo restrictions.


Point PFSense to Your DNS Server
By default PFSense works as a DNS resolver for you.  However in most business environments you would actually have a DNS server configured to do the resolving for you.  So with this infrastructure in mind we want to be able to point our users to the appropriate resolver.  
In this third most popular video of 2021 I demonstrate how to point your PFSense machine to your DNS server.


Super Easy Install of SNORT

I love using snort in my lab.  It is a tool that can easily be set up in any environment and can be running fairly easily.  This video highlights the step by step configuration of Snort on a Linux distro.

One: Top YouTube video of 2021!

How To Change your External IP

That brings us to my number one video in 2021!  There are a number of reasons why someone would want to change their external IP.  Some people are hosting servers internally and they need to share their external IP so that people can be "port forwarded" to the correct asset.  Some folks have been banned from services and their external IP has been put on the "naughty" list.  Whatever the reason is the theory behind changing it is simple.  
Your IP is associated with a network interface.  That network interface has a MAC address.  
Change the MAC, and the service (your ISP) providing you with an IP believes a new machine is connected, therefore it gives you a new IP.  

Thanks everyone for reading and watching this year!!

2021 picture 

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