PasteHunter is a python3 application that is designed to query a collection of sites that host publicly pasted data. For all the pastes it finds it scans the raw contents against a series of Yara rules looking for information that can be used by an organisation or a researcher.


There are a few ways to install

Local Installation


If you want to run the latest stable version grab the latest release from If you want to run the development version clone the repository or download the latest archive.

Pastehunter has very few dependancies you can install all the python libraries using the requirements.txt file and sudo pip3 install -r requirements.txt


Yara is the scanning engine that scans each paste. Use the official documentation to install yara and the python3 library.

All yara rules are stored in the YaraRules directory. An index.yar file is created at run time that includes all additional yar files in this directory. To add or remove yara rules, simply add or remove the rule file from this directory.

Elastic Search

If you want to use the elastic search output module you will need to install elastic search. Pastehunter has been tested with version 6.x of Elasticsearch.

To install follow the official directions on

You will also need the elasticsearch python library which can be installed using sudo pip3 install elasticsearch.


Kibana is the fronted search to Elasticsearch. If you have enabled the Elasticsearch module you probably want this. To install follow the official directions on

Also Read – Cloud Security Audit : A Command Line Security Audit Tool For Amazon Web Services

Docker Installation

You will find a Dockerfile that will build the latest stable version of PasteHunter.

This can be used with the included docker-compose.yml file. A sample podspec for kubernets is coming soon.


Before you can get up and running you will need to set up the basic config. Copy the settings.json.sample to settings.json and edit with your editor of choice.


  • rule_path: defaults to the YaraRules directory in the PasteHunter root.
  • blacklist: If set to true, any pastes that match this rule will be ignored.
  • test_rules: Occasionaly I release some early test rules. Set this to true to use them.


Logging for the application is configured here.



General config options here.

  • run_frequency: Sleep delay between fetching list of inputs to download. This helps rate limits.

For Input, Output and Postprocess settings please refer to the relevant sections of the docs.


You can run pastehunter by calling the script by name.



You can install pastehunter as a service if your planning on running for long periods of time. An example systemd service file is show below

Create a new service file /etc/systemd/system/pastehunter.service

Add the following text updating as appropriate for your setup paying attention to file paths and usernames.:


ExecStart=/usr/bin/python3 /opt/PasteHunter/


Before starting the service ensure you have tested the pastehunter app on the command line and identify any errors. Once your ready then update systemctl systemctl daemon-reload enable the new service systemctl enable pastehunter.service and start the service systemctl start pastehunter

Supported Inputs

Pastehunter currently has support for the following sites:

  • stackexchange # There are about 176!

Supported Outputs

Pastehunter supports several output modules:

  • dump to ElasticSearch DB (default).
  • Email alerts (SMTP).
  • Slack Channel notifications.
  • Dump to JSON file.
  • Dump to CSV file.
  • Send to syslog.