OpenSSH is the premier connectivity tool for remote login with the SSH protocol. It encrypts all traffic to eliminate eavesdropping, connection hijacking, and other attacks. In addition, OpenSSH provides a large suite of secure tunneling capabilities, several authentication methods, and sophisticated configuration options.
Gyrfalcon is a Linux capability that performs a ptrace on an OpenSSH client enabling the collection of username, password, TCP/IP connections, and session data. In short, it is a tool designed to bypass the security features of OpenSSH.
ptrace is a system call found in several Unix and Unix-like operating systems. By using ptrace (the name is an abbreviation of "process trace") one process can control another, enabling the controller to inspect and manipulate the internal state of its target. ptrace is used by debuggers and other code-analysis tools, mostly as aids to software development.
ptrace is also used by specialized programs to patch running programs, to avoid unfixed bugs or to overcome security features. It can further be used as a sandbox and as a runtime environment simulator (like emulating root access for non-root software).
By attaching to another process using the ptrace call, a tool has extensive control over the operation of its target. This includes manipulation of its file descriptors, memory, and registers. It can single-step through the target's code, can observe and intercept system calls and their results, and can manipulate the target's signal handlers and both receive and send signals on its behalf. The ability to write into the target's memory allows not only its data store to be changed, but also the application's own code segment, allowing the controller to install breakpoints and patch the running code of the target.
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