Browse Definitions:
Definition

Shodan

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

Shodan (Sentient Hyper-Optimised Data Access Network) is a search engine designed to map and gather information about internet-connected devices and systems. Shodan is sometimes referred to as a search engine for the internet of things (IoT).  Applications of the software include market research, vulnerability analysis and penetration testing, as well as hacking.

Shodan makes it possible to detect devices that are connected to the internet at any given time, the locations of those devices and their current users. Such devices could be in almost any type of system, including business networks, surveillance cameras, industrial control systems (ICS) and smart homes. Shodan attempts to grab the system’s banner directly, gathering the data by way of the associated server’s ports. Banner grabbing is a key step for penetration testing as it helps identify vulnerable systems. Shodan also searches corresponding exploits in the search platform’s exploit section.

Shodan supports Boolean operators and provides filters to improve the efficiency of searching. The search engine provides 50 results for free and offers paid subscriptions for more extensive results.

John Matherly came up with the idea of searching Internet-connected devices in 2003 and launched Shodan in 2009. It quickly became apparent that hackers could use the tool to find vulnerable systems and that, furthermore, many systems all over the world were readily accessible and inadequately protected from hardware attacks, industrial espionage and sabotage.

Shodan is named for a character from a video game series called System Shock.

This was last updated in August 2016

Continue Reading About Shodan

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

SearchCompliance

  • internal audit (IA)

    An internal audit (IA) is an organizational initiative to monitor and analyze its own business operations in order to determine ...

  • pure risk (absolute risk)

    Pure risk, also called absolute risk, is a category of threat that is beyond human control and has only one possible outcome if ...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

SearchSecurity

  • principle of least privilege (POLP)

    The principle of least privilege (POLP), an important concept in computer security, is the practice of limiting access rights for...

  • identity management (ID management)

    Identity management (ID management) is the organizational process for identifying, authenticating and authorizing individuals or ...

  • zero-day (computer)

    A zero-day vulnerability, also known as a computer zero day, is a flaw in software, hardware or firmware that is unknown to the ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR)

    Business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) are closely related practices that describe an organization's preparation for ...

  • business continuity plan (BCP)

    A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that consists of the critical information an organization needs to continue ...

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

SearchStorage

  • SAS SSD (Serial-Attached SCSI solid-state drive)

    A SAS SSD (Serial-Attached SCSI solid-state drive) is a NAND flash-based storage or caching device designed to fit in the same ...

  • MTTR (mean time to repair)

    MTTR (mean time to repair) is the average time required to fix a failed component or device and return it to production status.

  • OpenStack Swift

    OpenStack Swift, also known as OpenStack Object Storage, is an open source object storage system that is licensed under the ...

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • hybrid hard disk drive (HDD)

    A hybrid hard disk drive is an electromechanical spinning hard disk that contains some amount of NAND Flash memory.

Close