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Maximizing Penetration Testing Success with Effective Reconnaissance Techniques using ChatGPT
  • Sheetal Temara
Sheetal Temara
University of the Cumberlands

Corresponding Author:stemara22276@ucumberlands.edu

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ChatGPT is a generative pretrained transformer language model created using artificial intelligence implemented as chatbot which can provide very detailed responses to a wide variety of questions. As a very contemporary phenomenon, this tool has a wide variety of potential use cases that have yet to be explored. With the significant extent of information on a broad assortment of potential topics, ChatGPT could add value to many information security uses cases both from an efficiency perspective as well as to offer another source of security information that could be used to assist with securing Internet accessible assets of organizations. One information security practice that could benefit from ChatGPT is the reconnaissance phase of penetration testing. This research uses a case study methodology to explore and investigate the uses of ChatGPT in obtaining valuable reconnaissance data. ChatGPT is able to provide many types of intel regarding targeted properties which includes Internet Protocol (IP) address ranges, domain names, network topology, vendor technologies, SSL/TLS ciphers, ports & services, and operating systems used by the target. The reconnaissance information can then be used during the planning phase of a penetration test to determine the tactics, tools, and techniques to guide the later phases of the penetration test in order to discover potential risks such as unpatched software components and security misconfiguration related issues. The study provides insights into how artificial intelligence language models can be used in cybersecurity and contributes to the advancement of penetration testing techniques.