An Open Source Malware Analysis Pipeline System
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README.md

Aleph - OpenSource /Malware Analysis Pipeline System

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What?

Aleph is designed to pipeline the analysis of malware samples. It has a series of collectors that will gather samples from many sources and shove them into the pipeline. The sample manager has a series of plugins that are ran against the sample and returns found data into JSON form.

These JSON data can be further processed and queried in a objective manner instead of grepping and regexing.

How?

The main Aleph daemon is a loose-coupled python application and library. These are composed by the Aleph Service that spawns:

  1. The Collectors. These are responsible for going to multiple sources (Filesystem folder, IMAP folder, FTP directory etc) and collect all the files there, store locally and add them to the processing queue. Each collector runs in its own process (fork).
  2. Multiple (quantity is configurable) parallel SampleManager services (that will pull samples from the work queue and process them) and run the plugins that receives the sample path and return the JSON object of found artifacts.
  3. The sample object is converted to JSON along with its data and is stored into an Elasticsearch backend.

Installing Aleph

Requirements

In order to get a clean and nice install, you should download some requirements: Ubuntu/Debian

apt-get install python-pyrex libffi-dev libfuzzy-dev python-dateutil libsqlite3-dev

ElasticSearch

First if you don't have an Elasticsearch instance ready, you must install one.

For Debian/Ubuntu/Redhat/Fedora/CentOS (yum + apt basically) users, follow this guide.

** Remember: Elasticsearh uses JVM, so you also must install it =) **

Python modules

We strongly suggest that you use python's virtual environment so you don't pollute the rest of your OS installation with python modules. To make a contained virtual environment, install virtualenv with pip:

pip install virtualenv

Go to the desired Aleph installation folder and type the following to create and activate your virtual environment:

virtualenv venv # 'venv' can be any name
source venv/bin/activate

There will be the environment name (venv) appended to your PS1 variable:

(venv)(2014-08-19 17:36:%)(~/opt/aleph/)

All python modules required are listed on the requirements.txt file on the root repository folder. You can install all of them at once using pip:

pip install -r requirements.txt

Then clone the repository and copy the settings file:

git clone https://github.com/merces/aleph.git --branch aleph-python --single-branch .
cp aleph/settings.py.orig aleph/settings.py

Edit settings.py and add a local source (a folder where Aleph will search for samples - WARNING: ALEPH WILL MOVE THE SAMPLE THUS REMOVING FROM THE ORIGINAL FOLDER) The folder must exists as Aleph won't try to create them

SAMPLE_SOURCES = [
    ('local', {'path': '/opt/aleph/unprocessed_samples'}),
]

Review your Elasticsearch installation URI

ELASTICSEARCH_URI = '127.0.0.1:9200'

** Workaround step ** As I still finish some of the code, there are some folders that are not on the repository and must be created manually and set accordingly on the settings.py file:

SAMPLE_TEMP_DIR = '/opt/aleph/temp'
SAMPLE_STORAGE_DIR = '/opt/aleph/samples'

Remember to verify folders permissioning. And Aleph is ready to run!

Running

Go to Aleph folder, activate the virtual environment and run the bin/aleph-server.py as following:

cd /opt/aleph/
source venv/bin/activate
./bin/aleph-server.py

And that's it. Check your logs under log/aleph.log to any troubleshooting.

Install the Web interface(Webui)

Edit the "SERVER_NAME" constant at your settings.py file. ex: SERVER_NAME = 'mydomain.com:90'

then create the following entry:

SECRET_KEY = 'Pu7s0m3cryp7l337here' #do not use this ;)
SAMPLE_SUBMIT_FOLDER= '/some/path' #where samples will be submitted from webui

Setup your database:

python bin/db_create.py

Run the webui script:

bin/aleph-webui.sh

To access your webinterface open your favorite browser at http://SERVER_NAME #That value you changed before.

Login: admin
Password: changeme12!

Note: For sake of Security's God, CHANGE YOUR PASSWORD! ;)

But if you do not like our webinterface you still can use other softwares to review and query data on elasticsearch. I strongly suggest this Chrome REST client plugin or the great Kibana

Currently implemented

Collectors

  • FileCollector: grabs samples from a local directory
  • MailCollector: grabs samples from email attachments on a IMAP folder

Plugins

  • PEInfo : extracts info from PE files such as entrypoint, number of sections and some PE characteristics(SEH/ASLR/DEP).
  • ZipArchivePlugin: extracts zip files and puts their contents back into analysis queue.
  • StringsPlugin: extracts strings from sample into three categories: All Strings, URI Strings and Filename Strings (not 100% but we do our best).
  • VirustotalPlugin: check a sample SHA256 hash against Virustotal database and get the report. If that hash doesnt exist, send the file to analise.
  • TrID: check the filetype of a sample.