No one’s going to confuse Nmap creator Fyodor with Wayne Newton, but here in Vegas at Black Hat, Fyodor is definitely a cult hero the blue hairs. Only thing is, these blue hairs are a bunch of 20-something coding geeks who turned out en masse today to get a glimpse of the man who developed the de facto network scanner.
Fyodor tore back the curtain on his Worldscan project this morning, a modestly ambitious project to scan tens of millions of IP addresses on the Internet, all in the name of enhanced functionality and effectiveness for Nmap and resolution of bugs in the tool.
Funny thing is, it almost didn’t happen.
As soon as Fyodor turned his version of Nmap on steroids loose on the Net, his phone was ringing with more than a few concerned sysadmins at his local ISP on the other end of the line. Watching Fyodor’s scanning thousands of hosts per second, they thought a superworm was on the loose.
“No. I’m not infected. I’m doing it on purpose,” he had to tell them. Lucky for him, once Fyodor explained who he was and what he was doing, the ISP sysadmins fell in line quickly. Turns out, they’re part of the blue-haired cult of Fyodor too.
“Once I told them I was doing the scans to ultimately make Nmap faster, they said ‘Carry on!” Fyodor said. “I had to slow it down a bit so I wouldn’t melt their switches. I don’t want to get kicked off my ISP — again.”