This cheat sheet outlines tips and tools for reverse-engineering malicious documents, such as Microsoft Office (DOC, XLS, PPT) and Adobe Acrobat (PDF) files.
· Extract suspicious code from the file.
· If relevant, disassemble and/or debug shellcode.
· Understand next steps in the infection chain.
Microsoft Office Binary File Format Notes
Structured Storage (OLE SS) defines a file system inside the binary Microsoft Office file.
Data can be “storage” (folder) and “stream” (file).
Excel stores data inside the “workbook” stream.
PowerPoint stores data inside the “PowerPoint Document” stream.
Word stores data inside various streams.
Tools for Analyzing Microsoft Office Files
· OfficeMalScanner locates shellcode and VBA macros from MS Office (DOC, XLS, and PPT) files.
· DisView disassembles bytes at a given offset of an MS Office file. (Part of OfficeMalScanner)
· MalHost-Setup extracts shellcode from a given offset in an MS Office file and embeds it an EXE file for further analysis. (Part of OfficeMalScanner)
· Offvis shows raw contents and structure of an MS Office file, and identifies some common exploits.
· Office Binary Translator converts DOC, PPT, and XLS files into Open XML files (includes BiffView tool).
· OfficeCat scans MS Office files for embedded exploits that target several known vulnerabilities.
Useful MS Office Analysis Commands
OfficeMalScanner file.doc scan brute
Locate shellcode, OLE data, PE files in file.doc
OfficeMalScanner file.doc info
Locate VB macro code in file.doc (no XML files)
OfficeMalScanner file.docx inflate
Decompress file.docx to locate VB code (XML files)
DisView file.doc 0x4500
Disassemble shellcode at 0x4500 in file.doc
MalHost-Setup file.doc out.exe 0x4500
Extract shellcode from file.doc’s offset 0x4500 and create it as out.exe
Adobe PDF File Format Notes
· A PDF File is comprised of header, objects, cross-reference table (to locate objects), and trailer.
· “/OpenAction” and “/AA” (Additional Action) specifies the script or action to run automatically.
· “/Names”, “/AcroForm”, “/Action” can also specify and launch scripts or actions.
· “/GoTo*” changes the view to a specified destination within the PDF or in another PDF file.
· “/Launch” launches a program or opens a document.
· “/URI” accesses a resource by its URL.
· “/SubmitForm” and “/GoToR” can send data to URL.
· “/RichMedia” can be used to embed Flash in PDF.
· “/ObjStm” can hide objects inside an Object Stream.
Tools for Analyzing Adobe PDF Files
· PDFiD identifies PDFs that contain strings associated with scripts and actions. (Part of PDF Tools)
· PDF-parser identifies key elements of the PDF file without rendering it (Part of PDF Tools)
· Origami Walker examines the structure of PDF files.
· Origami pdfscan identifies PDFs that contain strings associated with scripts and actions.
· Sumatra PDF and MuPDF are lightweight and free viewers that may be used in place of Adobe Acrobat.
Useful PDF Analysis Commands
Locate script and action-related strings in file.pdf
Show file.pdf’s structure to identify suspect elements
Examine and display file.pdf’s structure (Usage)
Additional Malicious File Analysis Tools
· ExeFilter can filter scripts from Office and PDF files.
· ViCheck.ca automatically examines malicious Office and PDF files.
· VirusTotal can scan files with multiple anti-virus tools to identify some malicious documents.