The Use of HoneyPots and HoneyNets to Trick Hackers
By Stephen Bucaro
A honeyPot is a storage area on a network that has confidential and valuable
data. It will most likely contain names, account numbers, credit card numbers, and social
security numbers that a hacker can sell for big bucks. At least that's what a hacker
thinks they've found when they gain unauthorized access to it.
In reality false data was deliberately placed in the honeypot by network security
administrators to attract and tempt the hacker. While the unsuspecting hacker is
at his mouth thinking he's stealing valuable data, his every action is being monitored
and logged, and his location is being traced. Poor hacker.
When network security administrators do identify the hackers location, will they have
him immediately arrested and put in a cage where they belong? Well, not really, for
two reasons: 1. Most attacks come from countries like China and Russia where the U.S.
and international organizations have little authority, and 2. security administrators
prefer to study the hackers methods and learn from them for a while.
The lessons learned from monitoring the honeypot can then be used to protect the
real data on the actual production servers which are chugging away perfectly securely
while the unsuspecting hacker is entertaining himself in the honeypot. Sometimes
companies set up an entire network of false data, called a honeynet so the hacker
can really enjoy them self.