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  • Millions of websites are powered by WordPress and holding the number one position, with 62% of the market share in the CMS world.

    A recent web application vulnerability report by Acunetix shows that around 30% of WordPress sites found vulnerable.

    There is plenty of online security scanner to scan your website. However, if you are looking for software to install and scan from your server, then WPScan is your friend. It is useful if your website is on a private network or Intranet where the Internet is not available. Or, want to test multiple sites at multiple times.

    WPScan is free software, helps you to identify the security-related problems on your WordPress site. It does several things like:

    • Check if the site is using vulnerable WP version
    • Check if a theme and plugin is up-to-date or known to be vulnerable
    • Check Timthumbs
    • Check for configuration backup, DB exports
    • Brute force attack

    and a lot more…

    There is several ways to use WPScan.

    • By installing on Linux servers
    • Using Docker
    • Using pre-installed Linux distro like Kali Linux, BackBox, Pentoo, BlackArch, etc.
    • Online version

    Using on CentOS

    The following are tested on CentOS 7.x.

    • Login to CentOS with root
    • Update the repository
    yum update -y
    • Install latest Ruby and their dependencies
    yum -y install curl gpg gcc gcc-c++ make patch autoconf automake bison libffi-devel libtool patch readline-devel sqlite-devel zlib-devel openssl-devel && gpg --keyserver hkp://pool.sks-keyservers.net --recv-keys 409B6B1796C275462A1703113804BB82D39DC0E3 7D2BAF1CF37B13E2069D6956105BD0E739499BDB && curl -sSL https://get.rvm.io | bash -s stable --ruby
    
    • Install Ruby Nokogiri
    yum -y install rubygem-nokogiri
    
    • Reboot the server and then install WPScan using gem command
    gem install wpscan

    It will take few seconds to install, and once done; you should see something like this.

    Done installing documentation for ffi, get_process_mem, mini_portile2, nokogiri, concurrent-ruby, i18n, thread_safe, tzinfo, zeitwerk, activesupport, public_suffix, addressable, opt_parse_validator, ruby-progressbar, ethon, typhoeus, yajl-ruby, sys-proctable, cms_scanner, wpscan after 32 seconds
    20 gems installed
    

    WPScan is installed and ready to use now. Execute wpscan and you should see it returns below.

    [[email protected] ~]# wpscan
    One of the following options is required: url, update, help, hh, version
    
    Please use --help/-h for the list of available options.
    [[email protected] ~]#

    Here is the output of one of the site’s test.

    [[email protected] ~]# wpscan --url https://geekflaresg.com
    _______________________________________________________________
             __          _______   _____
             \ \        / /  __ \ / ____|
              \ \  /\  / /| |__) | (___   ___  __ _ _ __ ®
               \ \/  \/ / |  ___/ \___ \ / __|/ _` | '_ \
                \  /\  /  | |     ____) | (__| (_| | | | |
                 \/  \/   |_|    |_____/ \___|\__,_|_| |_|
    
             WordPress Security Scanner by the WPScan Team
                             Version 3.7.6
           Sponsored by Automattic - https://automattic.com/
           @_WPScan_, @ethicalhack3r, @erwan_lr, @firefart
    _______________________________________________________________
    
    [+] URL: https://geekflaresg.com/
    [+] Started: Wed Jan  8 21:14:16 2020
    
    Interesting Finding(s):
    
    [+] https://geekflaresg.com/
     | Interesting Entries:
     |  - Server: nginx
     |  - X-Cache-Enabled: True
     |  - Host-Header: 5d77dd967d63c3104bced1db0cace49c
     |  - X-Proxy-Cache: MISS
     | Found By: Headers (Passive Detection)
     | Confidence: 100%
    
    [+] https://geekflaresg.com/robots.txt
     | Interesting Entries:
     |  - /wp-admin/
     |  - /wp-admin/admin-ajax.php
     | Found By: Robots Txt (Aggressive Detection)
     | Confidence: 100%
    
    [+] https://geekflaresg.com/xmlrpc.php
     | Found By: Direct Access (Aggressive Detection)
     | Confidence: 100%
     | References:
     |  - http://codex.wordpress.org/XML-RPC_Pingback_API
     |  - https://www.rapid7.com/db/modules/auxiliary/scanner/http/wordpress_ghost_scanner
     |  - https://www.rapid7.com/db/modules/auxiliary/dos/http/wordpress_xmlrpc_dos
     |  - https://www.rapid7.com/db/modules/auxiliary/scanner/http/wordpress_xmlrpc_login
     |  - https://www.rapid7.com/db/modules/auxiliary/scanner/http/wordpress_pingback_access
    
    [+] https://geekflaresg.com/readme.html
     | Found By: Direct Access (Aggressive Detection)
     | Confidence: 100%
    
    [+] https://geekflaresg.com/wp-cron.php
     | Found By: Direct Access (Aggressive Detection)
     | Confidence: 60%
     | References:
     |  - https://www.iplocation.net/defend-wordpress-from-ddos
     |  - https://github.com/wpscanteam/wpscan/issues/1299
    
    [+] WordPress version 5.3.2 identified (Latest, released on 2019-12-18).
     | Found By: Rss Generator (Passive Detection)
     |  - https://geekflaresg.com/feed/, https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3.2
     |  - https://geekflaresg.com/comments/feed/, https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3.2
    
    [+] WordPress theme in use: twentyseventeen
     | Location: https://geekflaresg.com/wp-content/themes/twentyseventeen/
     | Last Updated: 2019-05-07T00:00:00.000Z
     | Readme: https://geekflaresg.com/wp-content/themes/twentyseventeen/README.txt
     | [!] The version is out of date, the latest version is 2.2
     | Style URL: https://geekflaresg.com/wp-content/themes/twentyseventeen/style.css
     | Style Name: Twenty Seventeen
     | Style URI: https://wordpress.org/themes/twentyseventeen/
     | Description: Twenty Seventeen brings your site to life with header video and immersive featured images. With a fo...
     | Author: the WordPress team
     | Author URI: https://wordpress.org/
     |
     | Found By: Urls In Homepage (Passive Detection)
     | Confirmed By: Urls In 404 Page (Passive Detection)
     |
     | Version: 2.1 (80% confidence)
     | Found By: Style (Passive Detection)
     |  - https://geekflaresg.com/wp-content/themes/twentyseventeen/style.css, Match: 'Version: 2.1'
    
    [+] Enumerating All Plugins (via Passive Methods)
    
    [i] No plugins Found.
    
    [+] Enumerating Config Backups (via Passive and Aggressive Methods)
     Checking Config Backups - Time: 00:00:01 <===================================================================================================> (21 / 21) 100.00% Time: 00:00:01
    
    [i] No Config Backups Found.
    
    [!] No WPVulnDB API Token given, as a result vulnerability data has not been output.
    [!] You can get a free API token with 50 daily requests by registering at https://wpvulndb.com/users/sign_up
    
    [+] Finished: Wed Jan  8 21:14:28 2020
    [+] Requests Done: 51
    [+] Cached Requests: 7
    [+] Data Sent: 9.52 KB
    [+] Data Received: 369.97 KB
    [+] Memory used: 202.898 MB
    [+] Elapsed time: 00:00:12
    [[email protected] ~]# 
    

    Note: if you need vulnerability data in output, then you need to use their API.

    If you are interested in testing specific metrics, then check out the help by executing wpscan with --help syntax.

    [[email protected] ~]# wpscan --hh
    _______________________________________________________________
             __          _______   _____
             \ \        / /  __ \ / ____|
              \ \  /\  / /| |__) | (___   ___  __ _ _ __ ®
               \ \/  \/ / |  ___/ \___ \ / __|/ _` | '_ \
                \  /\  /  | |     ____) | (__| (_| | | | |
                 \/  \/   |_|    |_____/ \___|\__,_|_| |_|
    
             WordPress Security Scanner by the WPScan Team
                             Version 3.7.6
           Sponsored by Automattic - https://automattic.com/
           @_WPScan_, @ethicalhack3r, @erwan_lr, @firefart
    _______________________________________________________________
    
    Usage: wpscan [options]
            --url URL                                 The URL of the blog to scan
                                                      Allowed Protocols: http, https
                                                      Default Protocol if none provided: http
                                                      This option is mandatory unless update or help or hh or version is/are supplied
        -h, --help                                    Display the simple help and exit
            --hh                                      Display the full help and exit
            --version                                 Display the version and exit
            --ignore-main-redirect                    Ignore the main redirect (if any) and scan the target url
        -v, --verbose                                 Verbose mode
            --[no-]banner                             Whether or not to display the banner
                                                      Default: true
            --max-scan-duration SECONDS               Abort the scan if it exceeds the time provided in seconds
        -o, --output FILE                             Output to FILE
        -f, --format FORMAT                           Output results in the format supplied
                                                      Available choices: cli-no-colour, cli-no-color, cli, json
            --detection-mode MODE                     Default: mixed
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --scope DOMAINS                           Comma separated (sub-)domains to consider in scope. 
                                                      Wildcard(s) allowed in the trd of valid domains, e.g: *.target.tld
                                                      Separator to use between the values: ','
            --user-agent, --ua VALUE
            --headers HEADERS                         Additional headers to append in requests
                                                      Separator to use between the headers: '; '
                                                      Examples: 'X-Forwarded-For: 127.0.0.1', 'X-Forwarded-For: 127.0.0.1; Another: aaa'
            --vhost VALUE                             The virtual host (Host header) to use in requests
            --random-user-agent, --rua                Use a random user-agent for each scan
            --user-agents-list FILE-PATH              List of agents to use with --random-user-agent
                                                      Default: /usr/local/rvm/gems/ruby-2.6.3/gems/cms_scanner-0.8.1/app/user_agents.txt
            --http-auth login:password
        -t, --max-threads VALUE                       The max threads to use
                                                      Default: 5
            --throttle MilliSeconds                   Milliseconds to wait before doing another web request. If used, the max threads will be set to 1.
            --request-timeout SECONDS                 The request timeout in seconds
                                                      Default: 60
            --connect-timeout SECONDS                 The connection timeout in seconds
                                                      Default: 30
            --disable-tls-checks                      Disables SSL/TLS certificate verification, and downgrade to TLS1.0+ (requires cURL 7.66 for the latter)
            --proxy protocol://IP:port                Supported protocols depend on the cURL installed
            --proxy-auth login:password
            --cookie-string COOKIE                    Cookie string to use in requests, format: cookie1=value1[; cookie2=value2]
            --cookie-jar FILE-PATH                    File to read and write cookies
                                                      Default: /tmp/wpscan/cookie_jar.txt
            --cache-ttl TIME_TO_LIVE                  The cache time to live in seconds
                                                      Default: 600
            --clear-cache                             Clear the cache before the scan
            --cache-dir PATH                          Default: /tmp/wpscan/cache
            --server SERVER                           Force the supplied server module to be loaded
                                                      Available choices: apache, iis, nginx
            --force                                   Do not check if the target is running WordPress
            --[no-]update                             Whether or not to update the Database
            --api-token TOKEN                         The WPVulnDB API Token to display vulnerability data
            --wp-content-dir DIR                      The wp-content directory if custom or not detected, such as "wp-content"
            --wp-plugins-dir DIR                      The plugins directory if custom or not detected, such as "wp-content/plugins"
            --interesting-findings-detection MODE     Use the supplied mode for the interesting findings detection. 
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --wp-version-all                          Check all the version locations
            --wp-version-detection MODE               Use the supplied mode for the WordPress version detection, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --main-theme-detection MODE               Use the supplied mode for the Main theme detection, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
        -e, --enumerate [OPTS]                        Enumeration Process
                                                      Available Choices:
                                                       vp   Vulnerable plugins
                                                       ap   All plugins
                                                       p    Popular plugins
                                                       vt   Vulnerable themes
                                                       at   All themes
                                                       t    Popular themes
                                                       tt   Timthumbs
                                                       cb   Config backups
                                                       dbe  Db exports
                                                       u    User IDs range. e.g: u1-5
                                                            Range separator to use: '-'
                                                            Value if no argument supplied: 1-10
                                                       m    Media IDs range. e.g m1-15
                                                            Note: Permalink setting must be set to "Plain" for those to be detected
                                                            Range separator to use: '-'
                                                            Value if no argument supplied: 1-100
                                                      Separator to use between the values: ','
                                                      Default: All Plugins, Config Backups
                                                      Value if no argument supplied: vp,vt,tt,cb,dbe,u,m
                                                      Incompatible choices (only one of each group/s can be used):
                                                       - vp, ap, p
                                                       - vt, at, t
            --exclude-content-based REGEXP_OR_STRING  Exclude all responses matching the Regexp (case insensitive) during parts of the enumeration.
                                                      Both the headers and body are checked. Regexp delimiters are not required.
            --plugins-list LIST                       List of plugins to enumerate
                                                      Examples: 'a1', 'a1,a2,a3', '/tmp/a.txt'
            --plugins-detection MODE                  Use the supplied mode to enumerate Plugins, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Default: passive
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --plugins-version-all                     Check all the plugins version locations according to the choosen mode (--detection-mode, --plugins-detection and --plugins-version-detection)
            --plugins-version-detection MODE          Use the supplied mode to check plugins versions instead of the --detection-mode or --plugins-detection modes.
                                                      Default: mixed
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --plugins-threshold THRESHOLD             Raise an error when the number of detected plugins via known locations reaches the threshold. Set to 0 to ignore the threshold.
                                                      Default: 100
            --themes-list LIST                        List of themes to enumerate
                                                      Examples: 'a1', 'a1,a2,a3', '/tmp/a.txt'
            --themes-detection MODE                   Use the supplied mode to enumerate Themes, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --themes-version-all                      Check all the themes version locations according to the choosen mode (--detection-mode, --themes-detection and --themes-version-detection)
            --themes-version-detection MODE           Use the supplied mode to check themes versions instead of the --detection-mode or --themes-detection modes.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --themes-threshold THRESHOLD              Raise an error when the number of detected themes via known locations reaches the threshold. Set to 0 to ignore the threshold.
                                                      Default: 20
            --timthumbs-list FILE-PATH                List of timthumbs' location to use
                                                      Default: /root/.wpscan/db/timthumbs-v3.txt
            --timthumbs-detection MODE                Use the supplied mode to enumerate Timthumbs, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --config-backups-list FILE-PATH           List of config backups' filenames to use
                                                      Default: /root/.wpscan/db/config_backups.txt
            --config-backups-detection MODE           Use the supplied mode to enumerate Config Backups, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --db-exports-list FILE-PATH               List of DB exports' paths to use
                                                      Default: /root/.wpscan/db/db_exports.txt
            --db-exports-detection MODE               Use the supplied mode to enumerate DB Exports, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --medias-detection MODE                   Use the supplied mode to enumerate Medias, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
            --users-list LIST                         List of users to check during the users enumeration from the Login Error Messages
                                                      Examples: 'a1', 'a1,a2,a3', '/tmp/a.txt'
            --users-detection MODE                    Use the supplied mode to enumerate Users, instead of the global (--detection-mode) mode.
                                                      Available choices: mixed, passive, aggressive
        -P, --passwords FILE-PATH                     List of passwords to use during the password attack.
                                                      If no --username/s option supplied, user enumeration will be run.
        -U, --usernames LIST                          List of usernames to use during the password attack.
                                                      Examples: 'a1', 'a1,a2,a3', '/tmp/a.txt'
            --multicall-max-passwords MAX_PWD         Maximum number of passwords to send by request with XMLRPC multicall
                                                      Default: 500
            --password-attack ATTACK                  Force the supplied attack to be used rather than automatically determining one.
                                                      Available choices: wp-login, xmlrpc, xmlrpc-multicall
            --stealthy                                Alias for --random-user-agent --detection-mode passive --plugins-version-detection passive
    
    [[email protected] ~]# 
    

    Using WPScan on Kali Linux

    The beauty of using Kali Linux is you don’t have to install anything. WPScan is pre-installed.

    Let’s find out how to run the scanner.

    • Login into Kali Linux with root and open terminal
    • Run the scan using wpscan command
    wpscan --url https://mysite.com

    Using Docker

    A Docker fan?

    Why not, it is easy to get it started. Ensure you have Docker installed.

    • Pull WPScan docker image
    docker pull wpscanteam/wpscan
    • Once pulled, run it like below.
    docker run -it --rm wpscanteam/wpscan --url https://example.com

    Easy?

    WPScan powered Online Scanner

    You can leverage the following tools powered by WPScan.

    Geekflare

    Geekflare WordPress Security Scanner let you quickly find out if given WordPress site is having vulnerable core version, theme, plugin, etc.

    On top of WPScan metrics, it also checks the following.

    • Is the admin console exposed?
    • If considered safe by Google
    • Accessible over HTTPS
    • If front-end JavaScript libraries are vulnerable

    You don’t need to register an account; you can run the test on-demand in FREE.

    Pentest-Tools

    A tool by Pentest-Tools lets you test the WP site on-demand and produce the report.

    What’s next?

    Well done! If your site is not vulnerable. However, if it does, then work on those risk items. If you are not sure how to mitigate them, then take professional help.