All posts by Oleg Afonin

DFU (Device Firmware Update) is a special service mode available in many Apple devices for recovering corrupted devices by uploading a clean copy of the firmware. Forensic specialists use DFU during checkm8 extractions (Elcomsoft iOS Forensic Toolkit). Unlike Recovery, which serves a similar purpose, DFU operates on a lower level and is undocumented. Surprisingly, there might be more than one DFU mode, one being more reliable than the others when it comes to forensic extractions. The method described in this article works for the iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X.

iOS Forensic Toolkit 7.60 brings gapless low-level extraction support for several iOS versions from iOS 15.2 up to and including iOS 15.3.1, adding full file system extraction support for Apple devices based on Apple A11-A15 and M1 chips.

Disk encryption is widely used desktop and laptop computers. Many non-ZFS Linux distributions rely on LUKS for data protection. LUKS is a classic implementation of disk encryption offering the choice of encryption algorithms, encryption modes and hash functions. LUKS2 further improves the already tough disk encryption. Learn how to deal with LUKS2 encryption in Windows and how to break in with distributed password attacks.

Modern versions of Windows have many different types of accounts. Local Windows accounts, Microsoft accounts, and domain accounts feature different types of protection. There is also Windows Hello with PIN codes, which are protected differently from everything else. How secure are these types of passwords, and how can you break them? Read along to find out!

While Windows 11 requires a Trusted Platform Module (TPM), older versions of Windows can do without while still using PIN-based Windows Hello sign-in. We prove that all-digit PINs are a serious security risk on systems without a TPM, and can be broken in a matter of minutes.

Elcomsoft System Recovery 8.30 introduced the ability to break Windows Hello PIN codes on TPM-less computers. This, however, was just one of the many new features added to the updated release. Other features include the ability to detect Microsoft Azure accounts and LUKS2 encryption, as well  as new filters for bootable forensic tools.

This article continues the series of publications aimed to help experts specify and build economical and power-efficient workstations for password recovery workloads. Electricity costs, long-term reliability and warranty coverage must be considered when building a password recovery workstation. In this article we will review the most common cooling solutions found in today’s GPUs, and compare consumer-grade video cards with their much lesser known professional counterparts.

This article opens the series of publications aimed to help experts specify and build effective and power-efficient workstations for brute-forcing passwords. Power consumption and power efficiency are two crucial parameters that are often overlooked in favor of sheer speed. When building a workstation with 24×7 workload, absolute performance numbers become arguably less important compared to performance per watt. We measured the speed and power consumption of seven video cards ranging from the NVIDIA Quadro T600 to NVIDIA RTX 3070 Ti and calculated their efficiency ratings.

Today’s data protection methods utilize many thousands (sometimes millions) hash iterations to strengthen password protection, slowing down the attacks to a crawl. Consumer-grade video cards are commonly used for GPU acceleration. How do these video cards compare, and what about the price-performance ratio? We tested five reasonably priced NVIDIA boards ranging from the lowly GTX 1650 to RTX 3060 Ti.

The ninth beta of iOS Forensic Toolkit 8.0 for Mac introduces forensically sound, checkm8-based extraction of sixteen iPad, iPod Touch and Apple TV models. The low-level extraction solution is now available for all iPad and all iPod Touch models susceptible to the checkm8 exploit.