Cain and Abel (software)

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Cain and Abel
Developer(s)Massimiliano Montoro
Stable release
4.9.56 / April 7, 2014; 6 years ago (2014-04-07)
Operating systemMicrosoft Windows
TypePassword cracking/Packet analysis

Cain and Abel (often abbreviated to Cain) is a password recovery tool for Microsoft Windows. It can recover many kinds of passwords using methods such as network packet sniffing, cracking various password hashes by using methods such as dictionary attacks, brute force and cryptanalysis attacks.[1] Cryptanalysis attacks are done via rainbow tables which can be generated with the winrtgen.exe program provided with Cain and Abel.[2] Cain and Abel is maintained by Massimiliano Montoro[3] and Sean Babcock.


Status with virus scanners[edit]

Some virus scanners (and browsers, e.g. Google Chrome 20.0.1132.47) detect Cain and Abel as malware.

Avast! detects it as "Win32:Cain-B [Tool]" and classifies it as "Other potentially dangerous program",[4] while Microsoft Security Essentials detects it as "Win32/Cain!4_9_14" and classifies it as "Tool: This program has potentially unwanted behavior." Even if Cain's install directory, as well as the word "Cain", are added to Avast's exclude list, the real-time scanner has been known to stop Cain from functioning. However, the latest version of Avast no longer blocks Cain.

Symantec (the developer of the Norton family of computer security software) identified a buffer overflow vulnerability in version 4.9.24 that allowed for remote code execution in the event the application was used to open a large RDP file, as might occur when using the program to analyze network traffic.[5] The vulnerability had been present in the previous version (4.9.23) as well[6] and was patched in a subsequent release.


  1. ^ "How to use Cain and Able". Cybrary. Retrieved 2019-08-24.
  2. ^ "ECE 9609/9069: Introduction to Hacking". Whisper Lab. Retrieved 2019-08-24.
  3. ^ Zorz, Mirko (2009-07-07). "Q&A: Cain & Abel, the password recovery tool". Help Net Security. Retrieved 2019-08-24.
  4. ^ Metev, Denis (2019-07-29). "What Is Brute-Force And How to Stay Safe?". Tech Jury. Retrieved 2019-08-24.
  5. ^ "Attack: Massimiliano Montoro Cain & Abel .rdp File BO: Attack Signature - Symantec Corp". Retrieved 2019-08-24.
  6. ^ "Massimiliano Montoro Cain & Abel Malformed '.rdp' File Buffer Overflow Vulnerability". Retrieved 2019-08-24.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]