[Case study] Decrypt strings using Dumpulator

Original text by m4n0w4r

1. References
2. Code analysis

I received a suspicious Dll that needs to be analyzed. This Dll is packed. After unpacking it and throwing the Dll into IDA, IDA successfully analyzed it with over 7000 functions (including API/library function calls). Upon quickly examining at the Strings tab, I came across numerous strings in the following format:

Based on the information provided, I believe these strings have definitely been encrypted. Going through the code snippet using an arbitrary string, I found the corresponding assembly code and pseudocode as follows (function and variable names have been changed accordingly):

With the image above, it is easy to see:

  • The 
    register will hold the address of the encrypted string.
  • The 
    register will hold the address of the string after decryption.
  • The 
    function performs the task of decrypting the string.

Here, if any of you have the same idea of analyzing the 

<mark><strong>mw_decrypt_str_wrap</strong> </mark>
function to rewrite the IDApython code for decryption, congratulations to you 🙂 You share the same thought as me! The 
<mark><strong>mw_decrypt_str_wrap</strong> </mark>
function will call the 
<mark><strong>mw_decrypt_str</strong> </mark>

After going around various functions and thinking about how to code, I started feeling increasingly discouraged. Moreover, when examining the cross-references to the 

<mark>mw_decrypt_str_wrap </mark>
function, I noticed that it was called over 4000 times to decrypt strings… WTF 😐

3. Use dumpulator

As shown in the above image, there are too many function calls to the decryption function. Moreover, rewriting this decryption function would be time-consuming and require code debugging for verification. I think I need to find a way to emulate this function to perform the decryption step and retrieve the decrypted string. Several solutions came to mind, and I also asked my brother, who suggested using x or y solutions. After some trial and error, I decided to try using dumpulator. To be able to use dumpulator, we first need to create a minidump file of this DLL (dump when halted at DllEntryPoint). After obtaining the dump file, I tested the following code snippet:

from dumpulator import Dumpulator
dec_str_fn = 0x02FE08C0
enc_str_offset = 0x02FD9988
dp = Dumpulator("mal_dll.dmp", quiet=True)
tmp_addr = dp.allocate(256)
dp.call(dec_str_fn, [], regs={'eax':enc_str_offset , 'edx': tmp_addr})
dec_str = dp.read_str(dp.read_long(tmp_addr))
print(f"Encrypted string: '{dp.read_str(enc_str_offset)}'")
print(f"Decrypted string: '{dec_str}'")

Result when executing the above code:

0ly Sh1T… 😂 that’s exactly what I wanted.

Next, I will rewrite the code according to my intention as follows:

  • Use regex to search for patterns and extract all encoded string addresses.
  • Filter out addresses that match the pattern but are not decryption functions or undefined addresses and add them to the 

Here’s a lame code snippet that meets my needs:

import re
import struct
import pefile
from dumpulator import Dumpulator
dump_image_base = 0x2F80000
dec_str_fn = 0x02FE08C0
BLACK_LIST = [0x3027520, 0x30380b6, 0x30380d0, 0x3039a08, 0x3039169, 0x303a6b6, 0x303aa0e, 0x303ab5c, 0x303bbf3, 0x3066075, 0x306661b, 0x3083e50,
              0x3084373, 0x30856d1, 0x30858aa, 0x308c7ac, 0x308d02d, 0x30acbfd, 0x30cd12e, 0x30cd187, 0x30cd670, 0x30cd6d4, 0x30cfe2f, 0x30d4cc4,
FILE_PATH = 'dumped_dll.dll'
dp = Dumpulator("mal_dll.dmp", quiet=True)
file_data = open(FILE_PATH, 'rb').read()
pe = pefile.PE(data=file_data)
egg = rb'\x8D\x55.\xB8(....)\xE8....\x8b.'
tmp_addr = dp.allocate(256)
def decrypt_str(xref_addr, enc_str_offset):    
    print(f"Processing xref address at: {hex(xref_addr)}")
    print(f"Encryped string offset: {hex(enc_str_offset)}")
    dp.call(dec_str_fn, [], regs={'eax': enc_str_offset, 'edx': tmp_addr})
    dec_str = dp.read_str(dp.read_long(tmp_addr))
    print(f"{hex(xref_addr)}: {dec_str}\n")
    return dec_str
for m in re.finditer(egg, file_data):
    enc_str_offset = struct.unpack('<I', m.group(1))[0]
    inst_offset = m.start() 
    enc_str_offset_in_dmp = enc_str_offset - 0x400000 + dump_image_base
    call_fn_addr = inst_offset + 8 - 0x400 + dump_image_base + 0x1000
    if call_fn_addr not in BLACK_LIST:
        str_ret =  decrypt_str(call_fn_addr, enc_str_offset_in_dmp)
print(f"H0lY SH1T... IT's D0NE!!!")

Result when executing the above script:

No errors whatsoever 😈!!! As a final step, I added a code snippet to this script that will output a Python file. This file will contain the 

commands to set comment for the decrypted strings above at the address where the decrypt function is called. 

The final result is as follows:



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