Wednesday, August 16, 2017

DIGITAL ALCHEMY: Colors to IP Addresses

Crypto challenge fun for everyday use...

CRYPTO CHALLENGES encourage us to think about things in ways we normally don't. They challenge our brains and intellect to treat a certain data point in a unique fashion often outside the realm of 'normalcy'. I believe these efforts help us evolve our awareness and creativity, and sharpen our techniques regardless of our craft. Let's take the below for example....


There's no place


There is a 'hidden location' embedded in the above. At first glance you may think the image could hold EXIF data or Steganography. In this case however the twist comes in the form of chosen TEXT COLORS for the 'anomalous words' in the sentence. Let's take a look at the raw HTML code:

<span style="color: #7f0000;">LIKE</span>
<span style="color: #000001;">HOME</span>

The 2 pieces of information that "stand out" are the values used for text color:
LIKE (text color used) = #7f0000 (r=127, g=0, b=0)
HOME (text color used)  = #000001 (r=0, g=0, b=1)

If we take the HEX values for the 2 different colors (in correct order) and with proper bit-shifting/truncation we can translate the value back into an IP ADDRESS. In our example...

1st color: #7f0000
-- Remove the LAST 2 bytes from the value. New value = 7f00

2nd color: #000001
-- Remove the FIRST 2 bytes from the value. New value = 0001

Now concatenate (left to right) the first 'new value' & the second 'new value' to get the final HEX:
7f000001 (or #7f000001)

If we convert this value from HEX to DECIMAL...

RESULT: 2130706433

If we convert the DECIMAL to an IP ADDRESS...


The 'hidden location' turned out to be the IP ADDRESS for HOME/LOCALHOST:

NOTE: We can also use the websites below to convert from HEX directly to an IP ADDRESS.


1) First we start out by choosing our target IP ADDRESS. For this example let's use ''.

2) We need to convert our IP ADDRESS to a HEX value. Let's use the site below:

New HEX value: C0A87BEA

3) We need to split this value into 2 unique RGB HEX values by using the method below...

To create the 1st color:
Remove the LAST 2 bytes from the HEX value: C0A87B (or #C0A87B)

To create the 2nd color:
Remove the FIRST 2 bytes from the HEX value: A87BEA (or #A87BEA)

Let's use the site below to validate the 2 unique colors we just created:


Notice the 'rgb' values above as they should look familiar. It should be apparent as to why the bit-shift/truncation needs to happen to construct a usable IP ADDRESS from the '2-COLOR IP CIPHER'. Now we can leave a 'secret message' with a clue leading to the next rendezvous point.

4) Create a secret message using the 2 unique colors we just created:

Secret Message (which we of course know is ''):

<span style="color: #c0a87b;">LOOK</span> <span style="color: #a87bea;">HERE</span>


One more special message to go, then I'm done & I can go home...