Immersive Exploration of HTML Injection:
To adequately comprehend HTML Injection, it’s crucial to initially acquaint ourselves with HTML.
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HTML, a markup language, is employed to craft distinct elements of a website utilising tags. Primarily, it is utilized to build websites. Webpages are transmitted to the browser as HTML documents, which are subsequently transformed into ordinary websites and exhibited to the final users.
This handbook is designed to offer an in-depth understanding of HTML Injection, containing its diversified types, safety precautions, and real-life examples, explained in straightforward language for smooth grasping of the concept.
What You’ll Learn:
What does HTML Injection mean?
The crux of this injection assault encompasses infusing HTML code into susceptible areas of a webpage. Malevolent users transfer HTML code via weak fields intending to modify the website’s aesthetics or change the displayed details.
Subsequently, users may visualize the details dispatched by the ill-intentioned user. Broadly, HTML Injection refers to the infusion of a markup language code into the web page’s file.
The details dispatched during this category of injection assault can vary. It can range from a couple of HTML tags that merely present the dispatched details, to an entire counterfeit form or page. When this assault transpires, the browser typically interprets the malicious user’s data as legitimate and showcases it.
Amending the look of a webpage isn’t the sole hazard related to this type of assault. It resembles an XSS assault, where the ill-intended user pilfers someone else’s credentials. Hence, identity theft can also take place during HTML Injection attacks.
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Kinds of HTML Injection
This assault isn’t particularly intricate to apprehend or execute because HTML is seen as a relatively simple language. Nevertheless, there are several ways to execute this type of assault, leading to different kinds of HTML Injection.
Primarily, these types can be classified based on the dangers they pose.
As alluded to earlier, this injection assault can serve two chief objectives:
- To modify the look of the webpage.
- To purloin someone else’s credentials.
Additionally, this injection assault can be executed via different sections of the webpage, such as data input fields and webpage links.
Regardless, the primary types of HTML Injection are:
- Stored HTML Injection
- Reflected HTML Injection
#1) Stored HTML Injection:
The key distinction between these injection types is that a stored injection assault occurs when malicious HTML code is retained on the web server and activated each time the user invokes a relevant function.
On the contrary, in a reflected injection assault, ill-intentioned HTML code isn’t permanently stored on the web server. Instead, the webpage responds immediately to the ill-intentioned input.
#2) Reflected HTML Injection:
This type can be additionally divided into the following subcategories:
- Reflected GET
- Reflected POST
- Reflected URL
Reflected Injection assaults can be conducted differently depending on the HTTP methods, i.e., GET and POST. It’s worth noting that the POST method involves sending data, whereas the GET method involves requesting data.
To identify which method is utilized for specific webpage elements, one can inspect the source code of the page.
For Instance, a tester can scrutinize the source code of the login form to identify the method in use. Based on this data, a fitting HTML Injection method can be chosen accordingly.
Reflected GET Injection occurs when our input is showcased (reflected) on the webpage. For instance, if we possess a simple page with a search form vulnerable to this assault, any HTML code entered would surface on the webpage and be injected into the HTML document.
For Instance, if we input simple text with HTML tags:
Reflected POST HTML Injection is a tad more complicated. It takes place when ill-intentioned HTML code is dispatched instead of appropriate POST method parameters.
For Example,, if we possess a login form susceptible to HTML assault where data entered in the login form is dispatched using the POST method, any HTML code inputted in place of the correct parameters will be dispatched with the POST method and displayed on the webpage.
To execute a Reflected POST HTML assault, it is suggested using a browser plugin capable of simulating the data dispatch. One such plugin is “Tamper Data” for Mozilla Firefox, which intercepts the dispatched data and permits the user to modify it before dispatching it to the browser. In this manner, the altered data is dispatched and displayed on the webpage.
For Instance, utilizing such a plugin, if we dispatch the same HTML code <h1>Testing test</h1>, it will be displayed in a manner similar to the previous instance.