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Consider your web application hosted on a VPS or dedicated server and later moved to the cloud platform in which only your developed web application is considered in the scope.


This type of cloud assessment is performed where in the cloud system cannot be accessed externally and is private and which has firewall to prevent direct access and can only be accessed by a bastion host.


Testing the cloud console for any misconfigurations such as the created user accounts and their permissions, implemented ACL, etc. This is more of a configuration review verifying standards policies have been implemented while creating accounts. We can identify different techniques to perform privilege escalation.

AWS Cloud Penetration Testing Test Cases

  • Test for Unauthenticated Bucket Access

  • Test for Semi-Public Bucket access - Improper ACL permission

  • Targeting and compromising AWS Access keys in git commit

  • Test for Extracting keys from an EC2 instance

  • Exploiting AWS Security Misconfigurations

  • Testing to exploit EC2 instance

  • Exploiting Internal AWS Services using Lambda backdoors

  • Test for Subdomain Takeover

  • Testing for AWS iam Privilege Escalation

  • Test for RCE attack

  • Test for AWS Role Enumeration(IAM)

  • Test for EC2 service to exploit privilege escalation

  • Test for AWS Iam enumeration : Bypassing CloudTrail Logging

  • Test for BitBuckted Server data for credentials in AWS

  • DNS rebinding to compromise the cloud environment

  • Test for Change of local windows / Linux logs

  • Test to Create jobs or serverless actions to add root certificates and ssh private keys to machines and users (such as AWS lambda)

  • Test to Create an additional interface / assign an IP address in target network / subnet on a compromised machine (like assigning a secondary private IPv4 address or interface to an AWS EC2 instance

  • Steal virtual machine images from storage accounts, analyze them for passwords, keys and certificates to access live systems (like VM VHD snapshots from storage accounts)

  • Test to Gain OS level access to Instances/VMs via workload management service privileges (AWS SSM)

  • Create systems management commands or abuse instance metadata for scheduled and triggered command and control (AWS systems manager, modify EC2 UserData to trigger a reverse shell)

  • Test to Run or deploy a workload with an assigned/passed service or role, export instance credentials for those privileges (such as EC2 passed role and meta credentials)

  • Fingerprint server and application versions and frameworks, detect sensitive PII in application logs

  • Test for CSV injection in AWS CloudTrail

  • Tested for AWS secrets accessible via meta-data

  • Attempt load balancer MiTM for session hijacking (elb) by cloud service configuration or load balancer instance compromise

  • Steal credentials from metadata of proxy or http forwarding servers (credentials in AWS meta​

  • Steal cloud workload credentials (AWS metadata sts or Azure Linux Agent (waagent) folder credentials)

  • Steal credentials from or leverage privilege to operation of a cloud key service (aws kms, azure key vault

  • Alter data in datastore for fraudulent transactions or static website compromise (s3, rds, redshift)

  • Alter a serverless function, logic app or otherwise a business logic implementation for action on objective or escalation (AWS lambda orAzure logic apps)

  • Alter data in local sql or mysql databases

  • Operate in regions where logging is not enabled or disable global logging (like CloudTrail)

  • Alter log files in a non-validated log store or disable validation (like cloud trail log validation)

  • Tesed for Disable network traffic analysis / logging (VPC flowlogs)

  • Tesed for Disable cloud alerting to prevent detection and response (like cloudwatch alerts, GuardDuty, Security Hub, or Azure Security Center)

  • Tesed for Disable data store access logging to prevent detection and response (cloudtrain data access, s3 access logging, redshift user activity)

  • Alter log retention or damage the integrity of logs (s3 lifecycle, kms decryption cmk key deletion/role privilege lockout)

  • Process hooking, process injection, windows access token manipulation, leveraging misconfigured sudo capabilities

  • Test to Create or reset a login, access key or temporary credential belonging to a high privilege user (like iam:CreateAccessKey, sts or iam:UpdateLoginProfile)

  • Test to Change the default policy for a user or new users to include additional privileges (like setdefault-policy-version)

AWS Penetration Testing Methodology

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