Inside the Core
The Macintosh Forensic Podcast


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Disclaimer:
The Inside the Core podcast is provided for entertainment only. Any information, techniques, software or equipment that is discussed should be researched, tested and validated prior to use. This podcast is not a substitute for specialized training that is required for computer forensics. The topics of discussion and/or opinions are those of the host(s) and do not reflect the views of the hosts employers or former employers. Discussion of content, goods, or services provided by outside entities does not imply endorsement. Nothing in the podcast should be construed as an offer, solicitation or recommendation to buy or sell any specific products or training.

Inside the Core - The Night Before MacMas This is our holiday special episode. We gather around the Christmas tree with the kids and read our version of The Night Before Christmas.

We want to thank all of you for taking the time to listen to the podcast and provide us feedback to help make the show better. We try our best to provide information that will help you in your Mac exams or at least point you in the direction where your questions can be answered.

We would especially like to thank our own MacDudette, KK, for writing the MacMas version and for her on the fly editing while Chris and Dave were totally clueless on how to make two words rhyme.

We hope that you have a Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah or whatever you are celebrating!

Be safe and we hope to see you in the new year!

The MacDudes
Direct download: Inside_the_Core_-_The_Night_Before_MacMas.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:08am PDT

Inside the Core Episode 9 In Episode 9, The MacDudes talk about hardening your Mac using native security applications and processes.

Following in the security theme, the Plist of the Week (PLoW) covers com.apple.loginwindow.plist and com.apple.loginitems.plist.

We have a great interview with Joe Duke of AccessData. Joe will discuss the use of FTK in analyzing Macintosh and the new FTK Mac Forensics course.

The following are some of the websites we talk about concerning Mac Security & anti-virus

Mac Shadows
Secure Mac
Mac Hacking
Security Social
Intego Blog

The show note to follow, honest!

Be Safe,
The MacDudes

Direct download: Inside_the_Core_Episode_9.m4a
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:38pm PDT

Inside the Core Episode 8 In Episode 8, we cover preparing a Mac for use as an analysis system. We also go over a lot of tools that are useful in analysis of a Mac. We have an interview with Ben Charnota of BlackBag Technologies about their new software write block (beware: Ryan's mic will be found lacking).

Google is providing free internet access in a number of airports this holiday season. Here is a link to an article about it: http://tiny.cc//Free_Google312

Plist of the Week: com.apple.recentitems.plist

No Website of the Week this episode, the show was getting a little too long so I pulled it out. We will include it in the next show.

Show notes to follow!

Be safe,
The MacDudes
Direct download: Inside_the_Core_Episode_8.m4a
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:51pm PDT

Sound Quality There was a problem with the sound quality of the Episode 7 interview. Yes, sound quality issues, imagine that. I corrected the problem and uploaded a new version yesterday afternoon. Still trying to get it right. Sorry for the inconvenience it is causing while listening. Be safe, Dave
Category:general -- posted at: 2:25pm PDT

Inside the Core Episode 7 This episode, the MacDudes have an interview with Lee Whitfield of the Forensic 4cast Podcast, talk about features in Snow Leopard that are of interest to examiners, and the Plist of the Week.

Also discussed;

Problems with Time Capsule
Linkedin Groups
Bodega application
Twitter's Computer Forensic Information
Snow Leopard's Problems with Guest Accounts
MobileSyncBrowser


Look for show notes soon.

Direct download: Inside_the_Core_Episode_7.m4a
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:48pm PDT

Inside the Core Episode 6 In this Episode, Ryan interviews Al Lewis of SubRosaSoft, Chris talks with Social Media & Communications expert, Christ M. Miller about her website, Cops2Point0.com.

The MacDudes also discuss:

HFS+ read support in BootCamp 3.0
Mac OS's native screenshot capabilities
Plist of the Week: com.apple.sidebarlists.plist

We're still struggling with some sound quality issues,  hopefully we will have this worked out with the next round of interviews.

Show notes will be posted shortly.
Direct download: Inside_the_Core_Episode_6.m4a
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:29pm PDT

Inside the Core Episode 5 In this episode, the MacDudes talk about iPhone backup files and tools to parse them, imaging iPods, how to extract a dictionary file from swap files over 2GB in size and the Plist of the Week.
Direct download: Inside_the_Core_Episode_5.m4a
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:04pm PDT

Inside the Core Episode 4 This episode covers why we point everyone to the user's Home folder first. Ryan talks about Diskarbitration for Leopard and Tiger. Chris showcases the Plists of the Week, Safari bookmarks, history, downloads, TopSites & Last Session.

Websites of the Week:  MacTracker & EveryMac

Podcasts to listen to: CyberSpeak & Forensic 4Cast

Show notes are available for download. They are more detailed than the synopsis below:

Click here to Download

Show notes synopsis:

Home Folder:
-Most of the evidence is located in the Userʼs Home Folder
-Majority of the Preference PLists with user-specific settings are in 
 User/Library/ Preferences

 -User Logs:
  -Indicative of the userʼs activity
  -Not system activity, but user specific logs

-Preferences:
 -PLists files or proprietary format files for the User
 -Contains configurations and settings for the User
 -I.E. Online activity, buddy lists, email, logins, etc.

-Application Support:
 -Mozilla Cache, iPhone backup files from MobileSync folder  -Application PLists with information

LEOPARD:
-Disk Arbitration looks at devices and mounts the device and makes icon 
  to access this device available to the user
-On Boot, Disk Arbitration recognizes the internal hard drive. Recognizes
  file system. Mounts partitions on desktop.
 -In order to prevent writes, we must prevent the mount.

 -To turn off Disk Arbitration, enter Terminal and type:

sudo launchctl unload System/Library/LaunchDaemon/com.apple.diskarbitrationd.plist

-Now when you connect a disk, the disk will not mount

-To turn back on, enter Terminal and type:
sudo launchctl load System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.diskarbitrationd.plist

or Reboot system and diskarbitration will become active again

TIGER:
-Not controlled by LaunchCtl process
-Need to move the PList from one location to another

-Method:
1. Make copy of the diskarbitrationd.plist
2.Once the copy is made, use the remove command in Terminal to delete  
   the com.apple.diskarbitrationd.plist from the /etc/mach_init.d folder
3.Reboot system
4.Only OS Boot partition will mount.

To UNDO, Copy the diskarbitrationd.plist back to the /etc/mach_init.d  
   folder and reboot the system.

PList(s) of the Week(PLOW):

User/Library/Safari:

Bookmarks.plist:
 -User created/maintained bookmarks

Downloads.plist
 -Any downloads specific to Safari
 -Download history

History.plist:
 -History from Safari if not cleared

TopSites.plist
 -Came with Safari 4
 -When a New Tab is opened, it opens thumbnails of  most visited sites
 -Instead of typing URL,  just click on thumbnail and it opens the site.

LastSession.plist:
 -Indicates what was open on last Safari session
 -If multiple windows opened, it will indicate each as a different Item
Direct download: Inside_the_Core_Episode_4.m4a
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:23pm PDT

Episode 3 Show Notes Sorry it took so long but the show notes for Episode 3 are ready. You can either read a shortened version below or download the PDF. The PDF has images that help explain some of the locations and other aspects of what was discussed.

Download Show Notes

Safari Internet Cache:

Original location for Safari 2 and early 3:
     - Users/USERNAME/Library/Caches/Safari/
     - Files were given Unique ID and extension of .cache 

Version 3: switched to a sqlite database file and moved the cache to /var/folders

-Location: /var/folders/(UniqueID)/(UniqueID)/caches/com.apple.Safari
-Cache.db file

-If in Windows environment, ie. Encase, you will not see “/var/folders”, instead it will be:
      -/private/var/folders/(UniqueID)/(UniqueID)/caches/com.apple.Safari

-var/folders view on Mac is called “soft link” as Private is implied

Latest Safari Ver 3 & Version 4 moves the cache back to:

Users/USERNAME/Library/Caches\com.apple.safari

- The Cache.db file resides here. Probable change was security based as it placed te file back in the users folder.

Viewing Safari Cache:

SQLite DB Browser 1.3:

Database: can use SQLite DB browser 1.3 from Sourceforge
-Displays the .db tables
-Example: “Response Table”: has website URL and Date/Time Stamp in GMT

Filejuicer:
-Drop the Cache.db on Filejuicer and it will parse the data out
-Images, HTML, TXT, etc.

Incident Response/Trusted Utilities:
-Often times, whenever out on scene, it is an unknown environment
-Must consider all machines to be unknown and applications possibly  
  altered
-Best way to prepare is to have our own trusted utilities disk
-Recommend a flash drive, minimum 4 GB to use
-If PowerPC: recommend Firewire, if Intel: recommend USB

Trusted Utilities Drive:

1. Disk Initialization (formatting for you Microsofties): Use Disk Utility
    to initialize the drive and wipe it prior to placing tools on it.
2. Put on utilities: i.e. Terminal, System Profiler, etc.
3. Rule of thumb: Command Line Tools/GUI Tools/Evidence Collection.
4. Name the Volume/Disk something you will recognize i.e.
    “RyansTrusted Utilities" This eliminates confusion on Suspectʼs
    desktop
5. Run Trusted Utilities: Date, System Profiler and export information to
   Evidence Collection.
6. Keep record of the commands run for later review and reporting, i.e.
    use PDF printout from Mac builtin utilities.
7. Remember to direct your path to the Trusted Utilities Disk as you are
    never sure what the suspect has done to their machine. Control your 
    environment.


PList(s) of the Week(PLOW):

Address Book:

/Users/USERNAME/Library/Preferences/addressbookme.plist:
-This PList originates information entered at Registration
-Can contain: First Name, Last Name, Local Phone #, Street Address 1     
  and 2, City, State, Zip, Area Code, Local Phone#, Company, Existing  
  email address

/Users/USERNAME/Library/Preferences/com.apple.addressbook.plist:
-Covers the settings for the address book entries
-Print Dialog Setting

/Users/USERNAME/Library/ApplicationSupport/addressbook/metadata:
-Unique User ID # for each “address book entry”
-File saved as “UUID/ABPerson.abcdp
-Viewable with Plist Editor or by copying out and dropping in  
  AddressBook

Users/USERNAME/Library/ApplicationSupport/AddressBook/images:
UUID matches the Metadata UUID
-This is the image that represents the corresponding address book entry
 
To View in Address Book:
1. Create a clean User account.
2. Copy the suspect com.apple.AddressBook folder and drop into the
    corresponding location in the new account. Also, copy and drop 
    AddressBookMe.plist
3. Open Address Book and then you can view and print out the entries.

Host at Large Reggie “Good Stuff” Chapman:

Part One of his series on the Terminal & Commands

Terminal:
-Darwin: Open Source Unix Core of MacOSX
-Terminal located in /Applications/Utilities
-Drag and place on your dock for quick access
-Change the Terminal to fit your settings, color, size
-Click on “Terminal --> Preferences” (LEOPARD)
-”Settings” box allows to change:
-Text, Window, Shell, Keyboard, and other Advanced Changes

 -RYANʼs TEMPLATE OF CHOICE: OCEAN is a good setting for Court Presentation

Websites of the Week

MACOSXHINTS.com:
-Site that has a blog theme
-People post ideas/ways to solve problems
-Has Forum to help research issues and find answers
-Good App and Scripting resource

Developer.Apple.Com:
-Has the technical notes for Macs
-Tech Note 1150: HFS File System
-Free Utilities and information 
Category:general -- posted at: 7:35am PDT

Inside the Core Episode 3 Hey,

Episode 3 is uploaded and ready for your listening pleasure. We cover Safari Internet cache, the Trusted Utilities Disk and the Plist of the Week. We also have our Host at Large, Reggy, with part one of his series on the Terminal.

Show notes should be posted tomorrow.

Thanks for listening and keep those emails coming in!

Be Safe,
The MacDudes

Direct download: Inside_the_Core_Episode_3.m4a
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:44pm PDT