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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: Chinese Hackers

Experts Link Sidewalk Malware Attacks to Grayfly Chinese Hacker Group

Experts Link Sidewalk Malware Attacks to Grayfly Chinese Hacker Group

September 10, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A previously undocumented backdoor that was recently found targeting an unnamed computer retail company based in the U.S. has been linked to a longstanding Chinese espionage operation dubbed Grayfly. In late August, Slovakian cybersecurity firm ESET  disclosed  details of an implant called SideWalk, which is designed to load arbitrary plugins sent from an attacker-controlled server, gather information about running processes in the compromised systems, and transmit the results back to the remote server. The cybersecurity firm attributed the intrusion to a group it tracks as SparklingGoblin, an adversary believed to be connected to the Winnti (aka APT41) malware family. But latest research published by researchers from Broadcom's Symantec has pinned the SideWalk backdoor on the China-linked espionage group, pointing out the malware's overlaps with the older Crosswalk malware, with the latest Grayfly hacking activities singling out a number of organizations in Mexico, Taiwan
ShadowPad Malware is Becoming a Favorite Choice of Chinese Espionage Groups

ShadowPad Malware is Becoming a Favorite Choice of Chinese Espionage Groups

August 20, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
ShadowPad, an infamous Windows backdoor that allows attackers to download further malicious modules or steal data, has been put to use by five different Chinese threat clusters since 2017. "The adoption of ShadowPad significantly reduces the costs of development and maintenance for threat actors," SentinelOne researchers Yi-Jhen Hsieh and Joey Chen  said  in a detailed overview of the malware, adding "some threat groups stopped developing their own backdoors after they gained access to ShadowPad." The American cybersecurity firm dubbed ShadowPad a "masterpiece of privately sold malware in Chinese espionage." A successor to PlugX and a modular malware platform since 2015,  ShadowPad  catapulted to widespread attention in the wake of supply chain incidents targeting  NetSarang ,  CCleaner , and  ASUS , leading the operators to shift tactics and update their defensive measures with advanced anti-detection and persistence techniques. More recently, atta
Experts Believe Chinese Hackers Are Behind Several Attacks Targeting Israel

Experts Believe Chinese Hackers Are Behind Several Attacks Targeting Israel

August 10, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A Chinese cyber espionage group has been linked to a string of intrusion activities targeting Israeli government institutions, IT providers, and telecommunications companies at least since 2019, with the hackers masquerading themselves as Iranian actors to mislead forensic analysis. FireEye's Mandiant threat intelligence arm attributed the campaign to an operator it tracks as "UNC215", a Chinese espionage operation that's believed to have singled out organizations around the world dating back as far as 2014, linking the group with "low confidence" to an advanced persistent threat (APT) widely known as  APT27 , Emissary Panda, or Iron Tiger. "UNC215 has compromised organizations in the government, technology, telecommunications, defense, finance, entertainment, and health care sectors," FireEye's Israel and U.S. threat intel teams  said  in a report published today. "The group targets data and organizations which are of great interest
New Chinese Spyware Being Used in Widespread Cyber Espionage Attacks

New Chinese Spyware Being Used in Widespread Cyber Espionage Attacks

August 04, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A threat actor presumed to be of Chinese origin has been linked to a series of 10 attacks targeting Mongolia, Russia, Belarus, Canada, and the U.S. from January to July 2021 that involve the deployment of a remote access trojan (RAT) on infected systems, according to new research. The intrusions have been attributed to an advanced persistent threat named APT31 (FireEye), which is tracked by the cybersecurity community under the monikers Zirconium (Microsoft), Judgement Panda (CrowdStrike), and Bronze Vinewood (Secureworks). The group is a "China-nexus cyber espionage actor focused on obtaining information that can provide the Chinese government and state-owned enterprises with political, economic, and military advantages,"  according  to FireEye. Positive Technologies, in a  write-up  published Tuesday, revealed a new malware dropper that was used to facilitate the attacks, including the retrieval of next-stage encrypted payloads from a remote command-and-control server,
Chinese Hackers Target Major Southeast Asian Telecom Companies

Chinese Hackers Target Major Southeast Asian Telecom Companies

August 03, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Three distinct clusters of malicious activities operating on behalf of Chinese state interests have staged a series of attacks to target networks belonging to at least five major telecommunications companies located in Southeast Asian countries since 2017. "The goal of the attackers behind these intrusions was to gain and maintain continuous access to telecommunication providers and to facilitate cyber espionage by collecting sensitive information, compromising high-profile business assets such as the billing servers that contain Call Detail Record (CDR) data, as well as key network components such as the Domain Controllers, Web Servers and Microsoft Exchange servers," Cybereason's Lior Rochberger, Tom Fakterman, Daniel Frank, and Assaf Dahan  revealed  in a technical analysis published Tuesday. The Boston-based cybersecurity firm linked the campaigns, collectively named "DeadRinger," to three different Chinese threat actors, namely  Gallium  (aka Soft Cell)
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