Creating your own tools to hunt bugs, a power often neglected | by Allam Rachid (zhero_) | Jan, 2023

Creating your own tools to hunt bugs, a power often neglected | by Allam Rachid (zhero_) | Jan, 2023

Creating your own tools based on the needs encountered while hunting bugs is often a power that is overlooked…

Hello hunters, as you know, there are many different security tools on GitHub and it’s not necessary to re-code what already exists because as they say: “Developers don’t reinvent the wheel”.

But what about the wheel that hasn’t been invented yet? 🧪

There is no perfect and absolute methodology in bug hunting, and everyone tries to find their way according to their skill level and preferred attack vectors. However, everyone can agree that anything that repeats itself or does not require much thinking should be automated.

The competition for bug bounty programs is fierce, it’s essential to optimize your time and automate what can be done so that you can focus on tasks that require manual tests and deep thinking. Whether you are a full-time hunter or not, your time is your capital, use it wisely and always strive to maximize your “chances” of success.

Whenever you identify a task that needs to be automated, start by doing some research to make sure that an existing tool has not already been created for this purpose — which will likely be the case most of the time as the infosec community is large and its contributors are many.

However, if existing tools are incomplete, too slow, or don’t suit you in any way, roll up your sleeves and get into code. You can either choose to customize the existing wheel according to your taste, or create a new one differently that will satisfy your expectations where the first one failed.

If the desired tool does not exist, there is no question anymore: it must be created from scratch. The time invested in creating a tool will most likely pay off later, whether there are tangible results or not — as the time formerly spent on these tasks manually will eventually be “refunded” when using the tool.

Sometimes it can be interesting — even necessary — to create “throwaway” tools to exploit specific vulnerabilities (race condition for example) that are unique to certain use cases with peculiar configurations on a program.

After using some of the most popular reconnaissance tools — all wonderful — for a while, some details bothered me a bit : sometimes slow because scans are big, having to use multiple different tools while crossing the results of different scans, visuals sometimes not pleasant while displaying results… Of course, this is only my opinion but it’s what pushed me among other things to start creating my humble tool : Gank recon. 🏹

Tool developed in Python

Subdomains enumeration, various scans, and testing of some vulnerabilities.

⚙️ Its features are as follows (*):

  • Enumeration of subdomains from a domain name
  • Checking if a subdomain is takeoverable
  • Checking if an inaccessible subdomain is bypassable via HTTP verb tampering or custom header
  • Port scan
  • Recording of results and notifications of changes between each execution of the program (new subdomain/open ports/HTTP code)
  • Ergonomic listing of the different active subdomains sorted by HTTP code with the information related to them (open ports, vulnerabilities, changes)

More features are coming soon, don’t hesitate to leave a star at the repo to see when they are uploaded

Output example from Gank recon.


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