Friday, February 2, 2018

Reading Notes database on macOS

The notes app comes built-in with every OSX/macOS release since OSX 10.8 (Mountain Lion). It is great for quick notes and keeps notes synced in the cloud. It can have potentially useful tidbits of user information in an investigation.

Artifact breakdown  & Forensics

Locations 

Depending on version of macOS, this can vary. Sometimes there is more than one database, probably as a result of an upgrade! But only one is actively used at any given time (not both). So far, we haven't seen any duplicate data when two are present.

Location 1

/Users/<USER>/Library/Containers/com.apple.Notes/Data/Library/Notes/
In here, databases will be named as one of the following:
NotesV2.storedata ← Mavericks
NotesV4.storedata ← Yosemite
NotesV6.storedata ← Elcapitan
NotesV7.storedata ← HighSierra
If a note has an attachment, then the attachment is usually stored at the following location:
/Users/<USER>/Library/Containers/com.apple.Notes/Data/Library/CoreData/Attachments/UUID/

There does not appear to be much difference between the database types. The following tables have been seen.
     
Tables for NotesV2
Tables for NotesV6

Each note can be associated with either a local account or an online one. The following account information can be obtained.  

Account email address, id and username from ZACCOUNT table

Individual note data is stored in ZNOTEBODY and the rest of the tables provide information about note parent folder, sync information, and attachment locations. 

Notes converts all data to HTML as seen below.

ZNOTES Table with note Html content
The graphic below shows how you can find and resolve note attachments to their locations on disk. If an attachment is present, ZNOTEBODY.ZHTMLSTRING will contain the UUID of that which can be matched up to the ZATTACHMENT.ZCONTENTID to get a binary plist blob. When parsed, you can find the full path to the attachment in the plist.

Resolving attachment location

The dates and times fetched are Mac Absolute time, which is the number of seconds since 1/1/2001.

Reading the data

The following SQL query will pull out most pertinent information from this database:

SELECT n.Z_PK as note_id, datetime(n.ZDATECREATED + 978307200, 'unixepoch') as created, datetime(n.ZDATEEDITED + 978307200, 'unixepoch') as edited, n.ZTITLE, (SELECT ZNAME from ZFOLDER where n.ZFOLDER=ZFOLDER.Z_PK) as Folder,(SELECT zf2.ZACCOUNT from ZFOLDER as zf1  LEFT JOIN ZFOLDER as zf2 on (zf1.ZPARENT=zf2.Z_PK) where n.ZFOLDER=zf1.Z_PK) as folder_parent,ac.ZEMAILADDRESS as email, ac.ZACCOUNTDESCRIPTION, b.ZHTMLSTRING, att.ZCONTENTID, att.ZFILEURLFROM ZNOTE as nLEFT JOIN ZNOTEBODY as b ON b.ZNOTE = n.Z_PKLEFT JOIN ZATTACHMENT as att ON att.ZNOTE = n.Z_PKLEFT JOIN ZACCOUNT as ac ON ac.Z_PK = folder_parent

Location 2

/Users/<USER>/Library/Group Containers/group.com.apple.notes/NoteStore.sqlite
This one has been seen on El Capitan, Sierra and HighSierra. Attachments are stored in the Media folder located here:
/Users/<USER>/Library/Group Containers/group.com.apple.notes/Media/<UUID>/
Here UUID is the unique identifier for each attachment. The database scheme is different here.

NoteStore.sqlite in HighSierra

NotesStore.sqlite in ElCapitan





Only account name and identifier (UUID) is available. To get full account information, this will need to be correlated with the account info database stored elsewhere.
ZICLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT account info
Note data is available in the ZICNOTEDATA table. 

ZICNOTEDATA table
That ZICNOTEDATA.ZDATA blob is gzip compressed. Upon decompression, it reveals the note data stored in a proprietary unknown binary format. As seen below, you can spot the text, its formatting information and attachment info.

ZDATA gzipped blob showing gzip signature (1F8B08)
Uncompressed ZDATA blob showing text, formatting and attachment info

Most notable in this database is the presence of several timestamps-
Note Title Modified → ZDATEFORLASTTITLEMODIFICATION
Note Created → ZCREATIONDATE
Note Modified → ZMODIFICATIONDATE1
Attachment Modified → ZMODIFICATIONDATE
Attachment Preview Updated → ZPREVIEWUPDATEDATE

Reading NoteStore.sqlite


The following SQL query will pull out most pertinent information from this database:
SELECT n.Z_12FOLDERS as folder_id , n.Z_9NOTES as note_id, d.ZDATA as data,
c2.ZTITLE2 as folder,
datetime(c2.ZDATEFORLASTTITLEMODIFICATION + 978307200, 'unixepoch') as folder_title_modified,
datetime(c1.ZCREATIONDATE + 978307200, 'unixepoch') as created,
datetime(c1.ZMODIFICATIONDATE1 + 978307200, 'unixepoch')  as modified,
c1.ZSNIPPET as snippet, c1.ZTITLE1 as title, c1.ZACCOUNT2 as acc_id,
c5.ZACCOUNTTYPE as acc_type, c5.ZIDENTIFIER as acc_identifier, c5.ZNAME as acc_name,
c3.ZMEDIA as media_id, c3.ZFILESIZE as att_filesize,
datetime(c3.ZMODIFICATIONDATE + 978307200, 'unixepoch') as att_modified,
datetime(c3.ZPREVIEWUPDATEDATE + 978307200, 'unixepoch') as att_previewed,
c3.ZTITLE as att_title, c3.ZTYPEUTI, c3.ZIDENTIFIER as att_uuid,
c4.ZFILENAME, c4.ZIDENTIFIER as media_uuid
FROM Z_12NOTES as n
LEFT JOIN ZICNOTEDATA as d ON d.ZNOTE = n.Z_9NOTES
LEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c1 ON c1.Z_PK = n.Z_9NOTES
LEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c2 ON c2.Z_PK = n.Z_12FOLDERS
LEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c3 ON c3.ZNOTE = n.Z_9NOTES
LEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c4 ON c3.ZMEDIA = c4.Z_PK
LEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c5 ON c5.Z_PK = c1.ZACCOUNT2
ORDER BY note_id
 
On HighSierra, use this query:
SELECT n.Z_PK, n.ZNOTE as note_id, n.ZDATA as data,c3.ZFILESIZE,c4.ZFILENAME, c4.ZIDENTIFIER as att_uuid,c1.ZTITLE1 as title, c1.ZSNIPPET as snippet, c1.ZIDENTIFIER as noteID,datetime(c1.ZCREATIONDATE1, 'unixepoch') as created, datetime(c1.ZLASTVIEWEDMODIFICATIONDATE, 'unixepoch'), datetime(c1.ZMODIFICATIONDATE1, 'unixepoch') as modified,c2.ZACCOUNT3, c2.ZTITLE2 as folderName, c2.ZIDENTIFIER as folderID,c5.ZNAME as acc_name, c5.ZIDENTIFIER as acc_identifier, c5.ZACCOUNTTYPEFROM ZICNOTEDATA as nLEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c1 ON c1.ZNOTEDATA = n.Z_PKLEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c2 ON c2.Z_PK = c1.ZFOLDERLEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c3 ON c3.ZNOTE= n.ZNOTELEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c4 ON c4.ZATTACHMENT1= c3.Z_PKLEFT JOIN ZICCLOUDSYNCINGOBJECT as c5 ON c5.Z_PK = c1.ZACCOUNT2ORDER BY note_id
If you are looking for an automated way to read this, use mac_apt, the NOTES plugin will parse it.

No comments:

Post a Comment