Shodan: The Strangest Search Engine Ever on the Internet

Have you ever searched for things, events, locations or activities on Google with no returned results? If you answered YES to that question, that means you need Shodan for your next couple of searches.

“When people do not see stuffs they searched for on Google search page, they think it is not possible for others to find it elsewhere. But, that is not true.”

That was what John Matherly, the man behind of creation of Shodan, the one and only strangest search engine ever on the Internet has to say when asked in an interview.

Shodan is a 3 year old search engine service provider with some kind of scaring search results which you cannot easily found elsewhere on the internet.Shodan search engine exposes loopholes

Unlike Google which crawls the World Wide Web collecting websites data (go round the website databases for content to index into its delivery stream); Shodan go through the back door of all internet channels to get its data.

You can refer to Shodan as a “Dark Google” if you like it that way!

It searches the Web, looking for webcams, printers, web servers, routers and all the other sources that is connected to and makes up the whole Internet.

Shodan runs every seconds of the day and gathers information from about 500 million linked devices and services each month in order to render them back to searchers.

You’d be amazed to know the countless number of stuff you can find on Shodan whenever you do searches. Shodan can bring information about open security cameras, traffic lights,  heating systems and home automation devices already connected to the internet.

According to data collected, searchers on Shodan has found control systems for a gas station, a water park, a crematorium and a hotel wine cooler without hassle because they are available online – although, these things aren’t supposed to be made available online. Besides, Cybersecurity researchers have used Shodan to locate control systems for a nuclear power plants, and that should tells you what the site can offer.

Is Shodan all for Security Breaches?

I know many of you guys may wonder why on earth would John Matherly think creating Shodan is the next big thing on the internet, after all  it is there to help the bad guys out there!

But you’re wrong. 

I know this may look harsh on you but I need to explain all I know about Shodan.

Shodan is here for the good guys, although some bad guys out there may decide to use Shodan for their own purposes. But I doubt that would work because John knew this would happen, and that was why he limits queries to 10 searches for unregistered user.

This means, before you could carry on large bunch of searches on Shodan, you’ll have to create your account – and this aims at keeping note of user searches (I didn’t mean tracking registered users’ information, but to have a backup of what they searched for against the bad days).

Also, there’s limit to what an individual can do on Shodan because it is basically made for security professionals, penetration testers, law enforcement agencies, and academic researchers. According to Matherly, “bad guys may use it as a starting point but it has limits.

In conclusion

Shodan is good for security personnel and agencies, but individual like YOU can make use of it. So, I expect you guys to make proper use of Shodan in exposing likely threat to organizations in your area in order to avoid attack. Just recently, two Indian hackers noticed a bug in Facebook webcam and they reported the case to the department at Facebook. That action helped Facebook protect its user’s data and in return resulted in $2500 cash reward. So, you can be the next person in line to do good. Go do that now!

Source: CNN Money

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