How to Protect Yourself from a Rainbow Table Attack

Rainbow Desk assaults are very efficient at cracking even the supposedly lengthy passwords. Nonetheless, defending your self is simple and we let you know how. Keep tuned!

We’re at all times informed to set lengthy strings of passwords for higher on-line safety. Whereas that is true to some extent, cybersecurity is rather more advanced than organising an elaborate string of alphanumeric characters.

Whereas hacking a protracted password is often a frightening job, it is a piece of cake if in case you have the password hash (defined within the subsequent part) and the required rainbow desk.

What’s a Rainbow Desk assault?

Not as advanced (or colourful), rainbow tables are datasets (like this: free rainbow tables) of hashes that match the frequent (or leaked) passwords.

To grasp their significance in an internet assault, we have to perceive how passwords work.

A password database usually shops user-specified passwords in a secret (hashed) format for added safety. They obtain this by encoding the passwords in plain textual content utilizing a hash algorithm.

So each time we enter a password in an internet portal (e.g. Gmail), a hash is created and it’s in contrast towards the saved hashes. And we log in efficiently if the generated hash matches the one within the database.

For instance, I’ve used our personal Geekflare’s Generate Hash device; look:


So if somebody makes use of a (dangerously easy) password like geekflare123a corresponding hash is saved as c0b78d5679f24e02fe72b8b30f16bbda within the database.

The hash algorithm used to generate this hash is MD5 specifically.

Now suppose a nasty actor illegally accesses the hash database; they’ll use a password cracking device that makes use of a rainbow desk (for the MD5 algorithm) to match this hash and reveal the unique password, which is geekflare123.

Then they hyperlink it to your username and the precise account is hacked.

That is referred to as a rainbow desk assault.

Learn additionally: How one can crack passwords with the Hashcat Instrument?

Steps to guard towards a rainbow desk assault

A rainbow desk assault outcomes from a compromised hash database. Both the hacker has direct entry to it, or he makes use of what’s already obtainable on the darkish net.

In any case, safety towards such assaults is determined by you and the password database administrator.

As a person you may:

  1. Arrange distinctive passwords and maintain checking their standing for darkish net leaks. You are able to do this through the use of monitoring instruments on the darkish net, which let you confirm if a credential has been made public. Then change the precise password to remain secure.
  2. What’s even higher is utilizing multi-factor authentication. It provides yet another variable to the sturdy safety equation. You possibly can simply use authenticator apps or {hardware} safety instruments like Yubikey.
  3. Nonetheless, the very best resolution is passwordless authentication. They’re arguably safer than utilizing passwords. No passwords, no password hacks. This works with the assistance of magical login hyperlinks, TOTPs, biometrics, and many others. Nonetheless, not all on-line portals have such a complicated login infrastructure. However use them when they’re obtainable.

There are a number of extra issues that primarily concentrate on password administration techniques.

  1. Including salt (additional characters) to the passwords earlier than hashing makes them distinctive, rendering the obtainable rainbow tables ineffective. As well as, the salt should not include the username for first-class randomness.
  2. You need to keep away from utilizing outdated hash algorithms like MD5, SHA1, and many others. As a substitute, SHA256 or SHA512 are at present higher choices till one thing safer involves market.
  3. As well as, the saved hashes will be improved by rehashing the primary hash with salt and the unique password. The method will be repeated a number of instances, making hacking exponentially tough resulting from laptop limitations.

Are Rainbow Desk assaults nonetheless a menace?

These assaults have gotten more and more out of date as salted hashes are the brand new norm. As well as, superior hashing algorithms have gotten commonplace, making rainbow desk assaults a factor of the previous.

As a result of making a rainbow desk by yourself may be very difficult. And an attacker is commonly restricted to the rainbow tables obtainable, which is of no use if the aforementioned precautions are taken.

To dam

Cybersecurity is an ongoing battle between us and the web. You possibly can’t let your guard down and it is good to maintain abreast of present finest practices.

Whereas rainbow desk assaults might not be related within the present context, the listed measures are good to pay attention to and apply instantly.

PS: However rainbow desk assaults should not the one ones, and there are a number of extra varieties of cybercrime to be careful for.

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