Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Eight GTX 1080 connected cards serve not to play, but to crack passwords

Eight GTX 1080 connected cards serve not to play, but to crack passwords

Video game enthusiasts are sure to dream of having the most powerful CPU and GPU configurations on their computers, and in this sense the combination of several graphics cards was one of the most attractive options. What happens is that combining several graphics cards is not just for playing.

In fact a group of security experts have uncovered how to combine no less than eight GeForce GTX 1080 for a singular purpose: crack passwords at vertigo speeds.

A brute power to break passwords
The server dedicated to breaking passwords is not cheap, but certainly not as expensive as the supercomputers that are focused on this task. The creators of the same make use of a Tyan motherboard, traditional in the multiCPU and multiGPU configurations, which "flooded" with 2 Xeon E5 processors, 64 GB of memory, a SSD of 1 TB and 8 cards EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition (recommend those specific editions).

The software used to control that singular server is Ubuntu 14.04.3 Server, on which both hashcat and hashview run, two programs very popular among "password hunters".

The use of dictionaries (in certain cases) and the raw power of GPGPU computing offered by those eight bestial graphic cards does the rest. In a quick synthetic test, they verified how that server was capable of delivering 341 GH / s (gigahash per second, one billion passwords), which logically makes even brute force search feasible in certain scenarios.

This type of server can be used to perform security audits on all types of web services, but also to verify that passwords remain the weak link of many users who try to protect their data. In an example of the capture they were viewed as passwords like "Passw0rd!", "Password1", "Winter2017" or "Password!" Were especially popular in the analyzed file. What we all wonder, of course, is how we would play "Battlefield 1" or "Overwatch" with this "monster".

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