An important aspect of network security is hands-on experience. Considering this I would like to share a step-by-step guide that illustrates how to create a web content management system with eCommerce shopping card software. What is the purpose? The purpose is to create a simulated real world e-commerce website in a controlled and virtual environment. Here you can find known vulnerabilities that will allow you to learn and practice security concepts. Will also allow you to have a scenario where you can practice offensive and defensive techniques legally, safely and for educational purposes. The scenario is based on an older version of Joomla and Virtuemart running on a LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) stack.
Probably the most common attack vector against Joomla based content management websites is SQL injection vulnerabilities. The National Vulnerability Database shows 755 matching records when searching for CVE’s affecting Joomla versions. ExploitDB shows 839 potential exploits for different Joomla versions and a variety of components. 487 SQL Injection related, 30 Cross Site Scripting 42 Local File Inclusion, 25 Remote File Inclusion and others. If you are familiar with Vmware this scenario can easily be extended to an Attacker system with Backtrack plus a Firewall like pfSense and/or IDS like Snort between the systems. This will allow you to further extend your skills in intrusion analysis, incident handling and penetration testing and others.