How does antispoof in pfSense work?



  • Hi there,

    I was looking through the generated rules file and found this:

    antispoof  for $LAN tracker 1000002620
    

    Now since antispoof is defined without quick it evaluates last as far as I understand it.

    User rules are generally defined as quick (that is if they are not floating and quick is explicitly disabled). So does that mean that if someone mistakenly sets the source of a new rule to any instead of LAN net (or whatever the interface in question is) that the antispoof rules have no effect?

    This "mistake" could be rather common given that when adding a new rule on an interface tab the source is set to any by default.

    Till today I was operating under the assumptions that antispoof would be one of the first things the firewall checks. There is also no mention on when it occurs in https://docs.netgate.com/pfsense/en/latest/firewall/firewall-rule-processing-order.html#longer-version which might help.

    Thanks in advance,
    Florian


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    where are you seeing this?

    in the /tmp/rules.debug

    My understand when the rules are loaded antispoof will be expanded into 2 rules.

    So for example

    in my rules.debug I see this

    antispoof for $LAN tracker 1000002620

    But when I look in actual rules

    [2.4.4-RELEASE][admin@sg4860.local.lan]/tmp: pfctl -vvsr | grep 1000002620
    @62(1000002620) block drop in on ! igb0 inet from 192.168.9.0/24 to any
    @63(1000002620) block drop in inet from 192.168.9.253 to any
    


  • @johnpoz said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    in the /tmp/rules.debug

    Yes, it's in /tmp/rules.debug

    My understand when the rules are loaded antispoof will be expanded into 2 rules.

    Yes, they will be expanded (according to the pf docs https://www.openbsd.org/faq/pf/filter.html#antispoof), from:

    antispoof for fxp0 inet
    

    to

    block in on ! fxp0 inet from 10.0.0.0/24 to any
    block in inet from 10.0.0.1 to any
    

    That said, the expanded rules would only be marked quick if antispoof itself was marked as such. Therefor antispoff will match after any user defined rules by default if I understand it correctly.


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    you quicker than my edit ;)

    So yeah what is the concern? That they are not marked quick?



  • @johnpoz said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    So yeah what is the concern? That they are not marked quick?

    Yes (especially the security implications of it), because without quick they will not match most of the time if the admin didn't explicitly set a proper source when creating rules on interface tabs.

    Ie if you generate a new rule on the LAN interface tab to allow LAN to access everything it will by default look like this:

    pass  in  quick  on $LAN inet from any to any tracker 0100000101 keep state  label "USER_RULE: Allow lan to access everything"
    

    This will match before the antispoof and as such allow spoofing on the interface again. The only way I can see around is by setting LAN net as a source manually. I thought the whole point of antispoof was to preventing spoofing without providing (by default) another gun (Source = any by default) to shoot yourself in the foot.

    Or do I miss something?


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    But what if want to allow multiple downstream networks to be passed.. Which is why I would set specific any as source...

    There valid reasons why source might be any vs just the net of the interface. Those users rules would be set to quick and allow traffic before the antispoof rule would hit.



  • I just found that /etc/inc/filter.inc has this interesting comment around the localhost rules:

            /*       
             * NB: The loopback rules are needed here since the antispoof would take precedence then.
             *      If you ever add the 'quick' keyword to the antispoof rules above move the loopback
             *      rules before them.
             */      
    

    So apparently it was considered, leaving the question why it wasn't done in the first place.



  • @johnpoz said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    There valid reasons why source might be any vs just the net of the interface. Those users rules would be set to quick and allow traffic before the antispoof rule would hit.

    Absolutely, but wouldn't it at least make some sense to default to something more specific like the "interface net"? Then the user can still choose to set to "Any", but by default would have actual antispoof protection.


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    There are a lot of things that might make sense to default to, in multiple places in the gui.. For example /32 as default mask causes uses pain all the time since they don't notice it and set an interface mask with /32 vs what they actually wanted - which is most likely /24 ;)

    Setting drop down lists default can always run into issues like this... Why do firewall rules default to tcp? Uses mess this one up all the time as well when they want say tcp/udp for dns,

    It is the admins responsibility to make sure the rules or settings are how they are suppose to be vs what defaults in a dropdown or bank field, etc.

    As to the specific reason for not quick on antispoof - lets see if @jimp can shed some light?



  • Fair enough. So all in all you can confirm that the antispoof rules will not be matched if they are accepted by the interface tab first.

    Which brings me to part two of the question: What can I set as sensible source for interface groups then? If I set the source to a combination of the involved interfaces it would still be possible to spoof addresses shared between those interfaces…


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    So the way I read the rules...

    Lets say you have 2 interfaces

    em0 192.168.1/24
    em1 192.168.2/24

    So this block prevents 192.168.1/24 being used on anything other than em0?

    And prevents source of firewall IP on any interface from being used as source..

    That is the way I read the rules, this early in the morning with my first cup of coffee only about half gone.. When those might actually come into play would require reading over the full set of rules in specific load order and evaluation order, etc.

    Why I am hoping maybe jimp can smack some knowledge on us both ;) If not him - maybe he knows who can..



  • @johnpoz said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    So the way I read the rules...

    Lets say you have 2 interfaces

    em0 192.168.1/24
    em1 192.168.2/24

    So this block prevents 192.168.1/24 being used on anything other than em0?

    Yes this is correct, and the same for 192.168.2/24 with anything other than em1.

    And prevents source of firewall IP on any interface from being used as source..

    Correct.

    Now imagine you were to create an interface group consisting of em0 & em1. Note that interface groups are just some logical grouping, no new antispoof rules get added for this (which makes sense). Lets name the interface group TEST for fun and create a rule on it allowing everyone to access some server:

    pass return  in  quick  on $TEST inet proto { tcp  }  from any to $SOME_HOST
    

    Now everyone on em0 & em1 can access SOME_HOST. So far so good, but the result of that rule is also than anyone on em0 can use a spoofed IP from em1 to access that host (actually any address), which is what I am trying to prevent.

    Yes, the knowledge of jimp would most certainly be appreciated.


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    Lets page @stephenw10 he might also be able to smack down some info ;)

    I show him online - as well, let me see if he will join in on the discussion


  • Rebel Alliance Developer Netgate

    The defaults can't stop you from hurting yourself. No matter how they are set, there will be some way to misuse them or break things. The burden is on the user to choose appropriate options.

    /24 is a worse default for interfaces than /32. With /32, everyone has to change the mask and it's safely broken (not going to hurt any other networks), whereas /24 could harm any number of misconfigured WANs.

    any as a default source is the most eye-catching default. Anyone who sees that should want to fix it. If we defaulted to something else, it could break in other ways. Not every interface has an address, thus doesn't have an interface network, so using that would not work on such interfaces.

    Sure there is a lot of subjectivity here but ultimately the burden is on the end user to know what they are doing.

    @apollo13 said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    Now everyone on em0 & em1 can access SOME_HOST. So far so good, but the result of that rule is also than anyone on em0 can use a spoofed IP from em1 to access that host (actually any address), which is what I am trying to prevent.

    That example isn't valid, though. If the user spoofed the address in that scenario, it would either never leave the network or never get a reply. They couldn't access anything. At most they'd get a single packet to the destination, so it's more of a concern for attacks that may only have a single packet payload or need no response.

    By not using quick we give the user the option to override the antispoof behavior. If we changed them to quick then odds are we'd break thousands of networks out there that rely on being able to manually manage that behavior.


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    @jimp said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    Sure there is a lot of subjectivity here but ultimately the burden is on the end user to know what they are doing.

    Completely and wholeheartedly agree with this! ;)

    @jimp so could you give an example of when the antispoof actually comes into play for sake of completeness.



  • Ok, thank you for clearing up the rationale behind those defaults. I do agree with most of them. I guess what threw me off was that https://docs.netgate.com/pfsense/en/latest/firewall/firewall-rule-processing-order.html#longer-version has "Internal automatic rules (pass and block for various items like lockout, snort, DHCP, etc.)" before "User-defined rules" and I assume antispoof was such an internal automatic rule.

    @jimp said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    @apollo13 said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    Now everyone on em0 & em1 can access SOME_HOST. So far so good, but the result of that rule is also than anyone on em0 can use a spoofed IP from em1 to access that host (actually any address), which is what I am trying to prevent.

    That example isn't valid, though. If the user spoofed the address in that scenario, it would either never leave the network or never get a reply. They couldn't access anything. At most they'd get a single packet to the destination, so it's more of a concern for attacks that may only have a single packet payload or need no response.

    Okay, this is where my network knowledge appears to be lacking. In which cases wouldn't it leave the network? Is it because the return-path would make no sense for pfSense or something else?

    And couldn't it be used for instance to send a DNS response to the spoofed address? Or with any other UDP protocol to generate amplification.

    I understand that the last questions are most likely not realistic attack scenarios after all, but the answer to those would help me widen my understanding of how all of this works. So while the question might be naive, I'd appreciate if you find the time to give me a few more pointers.


  • Netgate Administrator

    If a client connected to em0 manually sets an IP from em1 and you have rules to pass that that bypass the antispoof rules as discussed they should not have any connectivity.
    What do they set as their gateway IP? If they set the em0 IP that's outside their subnet (probably). If they set the em1 IP they would ARP for it and it would not reply as it's in a different subnet.
    But even if it did and they managed to send traffic any replies would be sent back out of em1. If in fact it left at all since the client would not respond to ARPs from em1 as it's not connected there.

    Interesting question though. I normally try to avoid that sort of thing! 😉 I don't think I've ever tested how it fails exactly.

    Steve



  • @stephenw10 said in How does antispoof in pfSense work?:

    If a client connected to em0 manually sets an IP from em1 and you have rules to pass that that bypass the antispoof rules as discussed they should not have any connectivity.

    Sure, there would be no (full) connectivity. But I am more thinking about malicious users here, not legitimate users.

    But even if it did and they managed to send traffic any replies would be sent back out of em1. If in fact it left at all since the client would not respond to ARPs from em1 as it's not connected there.

    Right, but an answer sent back to em1 could be considered kind of an attack (DNS amplification attacks etc come to mind?)

    Interesting question though. I normally try to avoid that sort of thing! 😉

    Hehe, me to. I was tightening firewall rules and looked at the generated rules.debug and started wondering…

    Thank you all for your insights, it was fun to dig through the rules and I guess I learned something on the way.


  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    I would still like to see a when would this really "make sense" and do what it suppose to do, etc. as an example.



  • Well, I cannot see any legitimate or useful use case myself aside from launching attacks against the network :)


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