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KillerBee is a Framework and Tools for Testing & Auditing ZigBee and IEEE 802.15.4 Networks


  • usb0.x support is being deprecated/removed
  • Apimote v1 support is being deprected/removed

If you require these features please create an issue to explain your usecase and requirements.

KillerBee 3.0.0-beta Update

Hi everyone, thank you for your continued support and interest in KillerBee.

As we are putting new effort into cleaning up the code, migrating to Python 3, adding features, functionality, and consistency, we're using this overhaul as an opportunity to revisit the goals and uses for the project and the best way to accomplish those.

This effort will result in a major version update as we deprecate old functions and dependencies and restructure the code to help organize features and enable funcitonality to be extended.

This is also an attempt to define the pieces that make up KillerBee, aiming to draw more distinct lines around features in KillerBee and treating it as library. See for details about this and future goals.


Distributed under a BSD license, see LICENSE.txt for details. All Rights Reserved.

The main toolkit was/is authored by:

We appreciate the many contributers to the framework, including the following who have contributed capabilities:

  • Anonymous Contributors
  • Spencer McIntyre (scapy extension)
  • Bryan Halfpap (additional tools)
  • Travis Goodspeed
  • Mike Kershaw (dragorn)
  • Chris Wang (aikiba)
  • Nick DePetrillo
  • Ed Skoudis
  • Matt Carpenter
  • Sergey Bratus (research support at Dartmouth)
  • Jeff Spielberg
  • Scytmo (bug fixes and CC2530/1 EMK board support)
  • Adam Laurie/rfidiot (APS crypto implementation, firmware, DFU & BOOTLOADER, SubGHZ, SiLabs NodeTest)
  • Steve Martin
  • Taylor Centers (Python 3 port)
  • SecureAB (Python 3)
  • Jan Rude (Python 3, Sewio)
  • Damien Cauquil (CC2531 BumbleBee)


KillerBee is developed and tested on Linux systems. MacOS usage is possible but not supported.

We have striven to use a minimum number of software dependencies, however, it is necessary to install the following Python modules before installation. The install will detect and prompt you for what is needed.

On Ubuntu systems, you can install the needed dependencies with the following commands:

# apt-get install python-usb python-crypto python-serial python-dev libgcrypt-dev

On Mac OS, you can install the dependencies with the following commands

# brew install libusb libgcrypt
# pip3 install pyusb scapy

The python-dev and libgcrypt are required for the Scapy Extension Patch.

Also note that this is a fairly advanced and un-friendly attack platform. This is not Cain & Abel. It is intended for developers and advanced analysts who are attacking ZigBee and IEEE 802.15.4 networks. I recommend you gain some understanding of the ZigBee protocol (the book ZigBee Wireless Networks and Transceivers by Shahin Farahani is reasonable, though still not great) and familiarity with the Python language before digging into this framework.


KillerBee uses the standard Python '' installation file, once dependencies are installed.

Install KillerBee with the following command:

# python3 install


The directory structure for the KillerBee code is described as follows:

  • doc - HTML documentation on the KillerBee library, courtesy of epydoc.
  • firmware - Firmware for supported KillerBee hardware devices.
  • killerbee - Python library source.
  • sample - Sample packet captures, referenced below.
  • scripts - Shell scripts used in development.
  • tools - ZigBee and IEEE 802.15.4 attack tools developed using this framework.


The KillerBee framework is being expanded to support multiple devices. Currently there is support for the River Loop ApiMote, Atmel RZ RAVEN USB Stick, MoteIV Tmote Sky, TelosB mote, Sewino Sniffer, and various hardware running Silicon Labs Node Test firmware.

See firmware/ for details on hardware support and firmware programming.

Support for Freaklab's Freakduino with added hardware & the Dartmouth arduino sketch and Zigduino boards are available but are not listed as they are not maintained. You must enable these to be searched for in killerbee/ and then reinstall KillerBee.


KillerBee includes several tools designed to attack ZigBee and IEEE 802.15.4 networks, built using the KillerBee framework. Each tool has its own usage instructions documented by running the tool with the "-h" argument, and summarized below.

  • zbid - Identifies available interfaces that can be used by KillerBee and associated tools.
  • zbwireshark - Similar to zbdump but exposes a named pipe for real-time capture and viewing in Wireshark.
  • zbdump - A tcpdump-like took to capture IEEE 802.15.4 frames to a libpcap or Daintree SNA packet capture file. Does not display real-time stats like tcpdump when not writing to a file.
  • zbreplay - Implements a replay attack, reading from a specified Daintree DCF or libpcap packet capture file, retransmitting the frames. ACK frames are not retransmitted.
  • zbstumbler - Active ZigBee and IEEE 802.15.4 network discovery tool. Zbstumbler sends beacon request frames out while channel hopping, recording and displaying summarized information about discovered devices. Can also log results to a CSV file.
  • zbpanidconflictflood - Requires two killerbee interfaces one killerbee interface listens for packets and marks their PAN ID. The other interface constantly sends out beacon packets with found PAN ID's. The beacon packets with the same PAN ID cause the PAN coordinator to believe that there is a PAN ID conflict, and the coordinator begins the process of realigning the network on a new PAN ID. The process repeats ad nauseum. Typically, network devices can't keep up with the rapid change and after several seconds the network falls apart. NO TARGETING BUILT IN: This may destroy all zigbee networks within range on the channel you are performing the attack on. Use with caution.
  • zborphannotify - Spoofs an orphan notification packet from the target device to a PAN Coordinator to test Coordinator behavior.
  • zbrealign - Spoofs an 802.15.4 PAN Realignment frame from the coordinator to a target device. May be able to reset the device's PAN ID or Channel
  • zbfakebeacon - Spoofs beacon frames, either spamming them or on response to seeing a beacon request come through.
  • zbopenear - Assists in data capture where devices are operating on multiple channels or fast-frequency-hopping. It assigns multiple interfaces sequentially across all channels.
  • zbassocflood - Repeatedly associate to the target PANID in an effort to cause the device to crash from too many connected stations.
  • zbconvert - Convert a packet capture from Libpcap to Daintree SNA format, or vice-versa.
  • zbdsniff - Captures ZigBee traffic, looking for NWK frames and over-the-air key provisioning. When a key is found, zbdsniff prints the key to stdout. The sample packet capture sample/zigbee-network-key-ota.dcf can be used to demonstrate this functionality.
  • zbfind - A GTK GUI application for tracking the location of an IEEE 802.15.4 transmitter by measuring RSSI. zbfind can be passive in discovery (only listen for packets) or it can be active by sending Beacon Request frames and recording the responses from ZigBee routers and coordinators. If you get a bunch of errors after starting this tool, make sure your DISPLAY variable is set properly.
  • zbgoodfind - Implements a key search function using an encrypted packet capture and memory dump from a legitimate ZigBee or IEEE 802.15.4 device. This tool accompanies Travis Goodspeed's GoodFET hardware attack tool, or other binary data that could contain encryption key information such as bus sniffing with legacy chips (such as the CC2420). Zbgoodfind's search file must be in binary format (obj hexfile's are not supported). To convert from the hexfile format to a binary file, use the objcopy tool: objcopy -I ihex -O binary mem.hex mem.bin
  • zbwardrive - Discovers available interfaces and uses one to inject beacon requests and listen for respones across channels. Once a network is found on a channel, it assigns another device to continuously capture traffic on that channel to a PCAP file. Scapy must be installed to run this.
  • zbscapy - Provides an interactive Scapy shell for interacting via a KillerBee interface. Scapy must be installed to run this.
  • kbbootloader - Switches device into DFU/BOOTLOADER mode (if device is capable)

Additional tools, that are for special cases or are not stable, are stored in the Api-Do project repository: and at


KillerBee is designed to simplify the process of sniffing packets from the air interface or a supported packet capture file (libpcap), and for injecting arbitrary packets. Helper functions including IEEE 802.15.4, ZigBee NWK and ZigBee APS packet decoders are available as well.

The KillerBee API is documented in epydoc format, with HTML documentation in the doc/ directory of this distribution. If you have epydoc installed, you can also generate a convenient PDF for printing, if desired, as shown:

$ cd killerbee
$ mkdir pdf
$ epydoc --pdf -o pdf killerbee/

The pdf/ directory will have a file called "api.pdf" which includes the framework documentation.

To get started using the KillerBee framework, take a look at the included tools (zbdump and zbreplay are good examples to get started).

Since KillerBee is a Python library, it integrates well with other Python software as well. For example, the Sulley library is a fuzzing framework written in Python by Pedram Amini. Using the Sulley mutation features and KillerBee's packet injection features, it is staightforward to build a mechanism for generating and transmitting malformed ZigBee data to a target.


Please use the ticketing system at

The original version was written by: The current version, fixes, etc are handled by: (See the list above for all contributors/credits.)

For contributors/developers, see for details and guidance.