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Critical PHP Vulnerability Exposes QNAP NAS Devices to Remote Attacks

Critical PHP Vulnerability Exposes QNAP NAS Devices to Remote Attacks

June 22, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
QNAP, Taiwanese maker of network-attached storage (NAS) devices, on Wednesday said it's in the process of fixing a critical three-year-old PHP vulnerability that could be abused to achieve remote code execution. "A vulnerability has been reported to affect PHP versions 7.1.x below 7.1.33, 7.2.x below 7.2.24, and 7.3.x below 7.3.11 with improper nginx config," the hardware vendor  said  in an advisory. "If exploited, the vulnerability allows attackers to gain remote code execution." The vulnerability, tracked as  CVE-2019-11043 , is rated 9.8 out of 10 for severity on the CVSS vulnerability scoring system. That said, it's required that Nginx and php-fpm are running in appliances using the following QNAP operating system versions - QTS 5.0.x and later QTS 4.5.x and later QuTS hero h5.0.x and later QuTS hero h4.5.x and later QuTScloud c5.0.x and later "As QTS, QuTS hero or QuTScloud does not have nginx installed by default, QNAP NAS are not aff
Europol Busts Phishing Gang Responsible for Millions in Losses

Europol Busts Phishing Gang Responsible for Millions in Losses

June 22, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Europol on Tuesday announced the dismantling of an organized crime group that dabbled in phishing, fraud, scams, and money laundering activities. The cross-border operation, which involved law enforcement authorities from Belgium and the Netherlands, saw the arrests of nine individuals in the Dutch nation. The suspects are men between the ages of 25 and 36 from Amsterdam, Almere, Rotterdam, and Spijkenisse and a 25-year-old woman from Deventer, according to a  statement  from the National Police Force. Also confiscated as part of 24 house searches were firearms, ammunition, jewelry, designer clothing, expensive watches, electronic devices, tens of thousands of euros in cash, and cryptocurrency, the officials said. "The criminal group contacted victims by email, text message and through mobile messaging applications," the agency  noted . "These messages were sent by the members of the gang and contained a phishing link leading to a bogus banking website." Unsu
Atlassian Confluence Flaw Being Used to Deploy Ransomware and Crypto Miners

Atlassian Confluence Flaw Being Used to Deploy Ransomware and Crypto Miners

June 17, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A recently patched  critical security flaw  in Atlassian Confluence Server and Data Center products is being actively weaponized in real-world attacks to drop cryptocurrency miners and ransomware payloads. In at least two of the Windows-related incidents observed by cybersecurity vendor Sophos, adversaries exploited the vulnerability to deliver Cerber ransomware and a  crypto miner  called z0miner on victim networks. The bug ( CVE-2022-26134 , CVSS score: 9.8), which was  patched  by Atlassian on June 3, 2022, enables an unauthenticated actor to inject malicious code that paves the way of remote code execution (RCE) on affected installations of the collaboration suite. All supported versions of Confluence Server and Data Center are affected. Other notable malware pushed as part of disparate instances of attack activity include Mirai and Kinsing bot variants, a rogue package called  pwnkit , and Cobalt Strike by way of a web shell deployed after gaining an initial foothold into the
Chinese Hackers Exploited Sophos Firewall Zero-Day Flaw to Target South Asian Entity

Chinese Hackers Exploited Sophos Firewall Zero-Day Flaw to Target South Asian Entity

June 17, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A sophisticated Chinese advanced persistent threat (APT) actor exploited a critical security vulnerability in Sophos' firewall product that came to light earlier this year to infiltrate an unnamed South Asian target as part of a highly-targeted attack. "The attacker implement[ed] an interesting web shell backdoor, create[d] a secondary form of persistence, and ultimately launch[ed] attacks against the customer's staff," Volexity  said  in a report. "These attacks aimed to further breach cloud-hosted web servers hosting the organization's public-facing websites." The zero-day flaw in question is tracked as  CVE-2022-1040  (CVSS score: 9.8), and concerns an authentication bypass vulnerability that can be weaponized to execute arbitrary code remotely. It affects Sophos Firewall versions 18.5 MR3 (18.5.3) and earlier. The cybersecurity firm, which issued a patch for the flaw on March 25, 2022, noted that it was abused to "target a small set of spec
Panchan: A New Golang-based Peer-To-Peer Botnet Targeting Linux Servers

Panchan: A New Golang-based Peer-To-Peer Botnet Targeting Linux Servers

June 15, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A new Golang-based peer-to-peer (P2P) botnet has been spotted actively targeting Linux servers in the education sector since its emergence in March 2022. Dubbed  Panchan  by Akamai Security Research, the malware "utilizes its built-in concurrency features to maximize spreadability and execute malware modules" and "harvests SSH keys to perform lateral movement." The feature-packed botnet, which relies on a basic list of default SSH passwords to carry out a  dictionary attack  and expand its reach, primarily functions as a cryptojacker designed to hijack a computer's resources to mine cryptocurrencies. The cybersecurity and cloud service company noted it first spotted Panchan's activity on March 19, 2022, and attributed the malware to a likely Japanese threat actor based on the language used in the administrative panel baked into the binary to edit the mining configuration. Panchan is known to deploy and execute two miners, XMRig and nbhash, on the host
Cloudflare Saw Record-Breaking DDoS Attack Peaking at 26 Million Request Per Second

Cloudflare Saw Record-Breaking DDoS Attack Peaking at 26 Million Request Per Second

June 14, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Cloudflare on Tuesday disclosed that it had acted to prevent a record-setting 26 million request per second (RPS) distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack last week, making it the largest HTTPS DDoS attack detected to date. The web performance and security company said the attack was directed against an unnamed customer website using its Free plan and emanated from a "powerful" botnet of 5,067 devices, with each node generating approximately 5,200 RPS at peak. The botnet is said to have created a flood of more than 212 million HTTPS requests within less than 30 seconds from over 1,500 networks in 121 countries, including Indonesia, the U.S., Brazil, Russia, and India. Roughly 3% of the attack came through Tor nodes. The attack "originated mostly from Cloud Service Providers as opposed to Residential Internet Service Providers, indicating the use of hijacked virtual machines and powerful servers to generate the attack — as opposed to much weaker Internet of Things
Unpatched Travis CI API Bug Exposes Thousands of Secret User Access Tokens

Unpatched Travis CI API Bug Exposes Thousands of Secret User Access Tokens

June 14, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
An unpatched security issue in the Travis CI API has left tens of thousands of developers' user tokens exposed to potential attacks, effectively allowing threat actors to breach cloud infrastructures, make unauthorized code changes, and initiate supply chain attacks. "More than 770 million logs of free tier users are available, from which you can easily extract tokens, secrets, and other credentials associated with popular cloud service providers such as GitHub, AWS, and Docker Hub," researchers from cloud security firm Aqua  said  in a Monday report. Travis CI is a  continuous integration  service used to build and test software projects hosted on cloud repository platforms such as GitHub and Bitbucket. The issue, previously reported in 2015 and  2019 , is rooted in the fact that the  API  permits access to historical logs in cleartext format, enabling a malicious party to even "fetch the logs that were previously unavailable via the API." The logs go all
HelloXD Ransomware Installing Backdoor on Targeted Windows and Linux Systems

HelloXD Ransomware Installing Backdoor on Targeted Windows and Linux Systems

June 13, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Windows and Linux systems are being targeted by a ransomware variant called HelloXD, with the infections also involving the deployment of a backdoor to facilitate persistent remote access to infected hosts. "Unlike other ransomware groups, this ransomware family doesn't have an active leak site; instead it prefers to direct the impacted victim to negotiations through  Tox chat  and onion-based messenger instances," Daniel Bunce and Doel Santos, security researchers from Palo Alto Networks Unit 42,  said  in a new write-up. HelloXD  surfaced in the wild on November 30, 2021, and is based off leaked code from Babuk, which was  published  on a Russian-language cybercrime forum in September 2021. The ransomware family is no exception to the norm in that the operators follow the tried-and-tested approach of  double extortion  to demand cryptocurrency payments by exfiltrating a victim's sensitive data in addition to encrypting it and threatening to publicize the inform
Microsoft Blocks Iran-linked Lebanese Hackers Targeting Israeli Companies

Microsoft Blocks Iran-linked Lebanese Hackers Targeting Israeli Companies

June 03, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft on Thursday said it took steps to disable malicious activity stemming from abuse of OneDrive by a previously undocumented threat actor it tracks under the chemical element-themed moniker Polonium. In addition to removing the offending accounts created by the Lebanon-based activity group, the tech giant's Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC) said it suspended over 20 malicious OneDrive applications created by Polonium andd that it notified affected organizations. "The observed activity was coordinated with other actors affiliated with Iran's Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS), based primarily on victim overlap and commonality of tools and techniques," MSTIC  assessed  with "moderate confidence." The adversarial collective is believed to have breached more than 20 organizations based in Israel and one intergovernmental organization with operations in Lebanon since February 2022. Targets of interest included entities in the manufacturing
U.S. Proposes $1 Million Fine on Colonial Pipeline for Safety Violations After Cyberattack

U.S. Proposes $1 Million Fine on Colonial Pipeline for Safety Violations After Cyberattack

May 10, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
The U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has proposed a penalty of nearly $1 million to Colonial Pipeline for violating federal safety regulations, worsening the impact of the ransomware attack last year. The $986,400 penalty is the result of an inspection conducted by the regulator of the pipeline operator's control room management ( CRM ) procedures from January through November 2020. The PHMSA  said  that "a probable failure to adequately plan and prepare for manual shutdown and restart of its pipeline system [...] contributed to the national impacts when the pipeline remained out of service after the May 2021 cyberattack." Colonial Pipeline, operator of the largest U.S. fuel pipeline, was forced to temporarily take its systems offline in the wake of a  DarkSide ransomware attack  in early May 2021, disrupting gas supply and prompting a  regional emergency declaration  across 17 states. The inciden
Ukrainian CERT Warns Citizens of a New Wave of Attacks Distributing Jester Malware

Ukrainian CERT Warns Citizens of a New Wave of Attacks Distributing Jester Malware

May 09, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
The Computer Emergency Response Team of Ukraine (CERT-UA) has warned of phishing attacks that deploy an information-stealing malware called Jester Stealer on compromised systems. The mass email campaign carries the subject line "chemical attack" and contains a link to a macro-laced Microsoft Excel file, opening which leads to computers getting infected with Jester Stealer. The attack, which requires potential victims to enable macros after opening the document, works by downloading and executing an .EXE file that is retrieved from compromised web resources, CERT-UA detailed. Jester Stealer, as documented by Cyble in February 2022, comes with features to steal and transmit login credentials, cookies, and credit card information along with data from passwords managers, chat messengers, email clients, crypto wallets, and gaming apps to the attackers. It's purchasable for $99 per month or $249 for lifetime access. "The hackers get the stolen data via Telegram usi
Chinese "Override Panda" Hackers Resurface With New Espionage Attacks

Chinese "Override Panda" Hackers Resurface With New Espionage Attacks

May 02, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A Chinese state-sponsored espionage group known as Override Panda has resurfaced in recent weeks with a new phishing attack with the goal of stealing sensitive information. "The Chinese APT used a spear-phishing email to deliver a beacon of a Red Team framework known as 'Viper,'" Cluster25  said  in a report published last week. "The target of this attack is currently unknown but with high probability, given the previous history of the attack perpetrated by the group, it might be a government institution from a South Asian country." Override Panda, also called  Naikon , Hellsing, and Bronze Geneva, is known to operate on behalf of Chinese interests since at least 2005 to conduct intelligence-gathering operations targeting  ASEAN countries . Attack chains unleashed by the threat actor have involved the use of decoy documents attached to spear-phishing emails that are designed to entice the intended victims to open and compromise themselves with malware
Russian Hackers Targeting Diplomatic Entities in Europe, Americas, and Asia

Russian Hackers Targeting Diplomatic Entities in Europe, Americas, and Asia

May 02, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A Russian state-sponsored threat actor has been observed targeting diplomatic and government entities as part of a series of phishing campaigns commencing on January 17, 2022. Threat intelligence and incident response firm Mandiant attributed the attacks to a hacking group tracked as APT29 (aka Cozy Bear), with some set of the activities associated with the crew assigned the moniker  Nobelium  (aka UNC2452/2652). "This latest wave of spear phishing showcases APT29's enduring interests in obtaining diplomatic and foreign policy information from governments around the world," Mandiant  said  in a report published last week. The initial access is said to have been aided through spear-phishing emails masquerading as administrative notices, using legitimate but compromised email addresses from other diplomatic entities. These emails contain an HTML dropper attachment called ROOTSAW (aka  EnvyScout ) that, when opened, triggers an infection sequence that delivers and exec
Microsoft Documents Over 200 Cyberattacks by Russia Against Ukraine

Microsoft Documents Over 200 Cyberattacks by Russia Against Ukraine

April 29, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
At least six different Russia-aligned actors launched no less than 237 cyberattacks against Ukraine from February 23 to April 8, including 38 discrete destructive attacks that irrevocably destroyed files in hundreds of systems across dozens of organizations in the country. "Collectively, the cyber and kinetic actions work to disrupt or degrade Ukrainian government and military functions and undermine the public's trust in those same institutions," the company's Digital Security Unit (DSU)  said  in a special report. The major malware families that have been leveraged for destructive activity as part of Russia's relentless digital assaults include:  WhisperGate ,  HermeticWiper  ( FoxBlade  aka KillDisk),  HermeticRansom  (SonicVote),  IssacWiper  (Lasainraw),  CaddyWiper ,  DesertBlade ,  DoubleZero  (FiberLake), and  Industroyer2 . WhisperGate, HermeticWiper, IssacWiper, and CaddyWiper are all data wipers designed to overwrite data and render machines unboot
Experts Detail 3 Hacking Teams Working Under the Umbrella of TA410 Group

Experts Detail 3 Hacking Teams Working Under the Umbrella of TA410 Group

April 28, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A cyberespionage threat actor known for targeting a variety of critical infrastructure sectors in Africa, the Middle East, and the U.S. has been observed using an upgraded version of a remote access trojan with information stealing capabilities. Calling  TA410  an umbrella group comprised of three teams dubbed FlowingFrog, LookingFrog, and JollyFrog, Slovak cybersecurity firm ESET  assessed  that "these subgroups operate somewhat independently, but that they may share intelligence requirements, an access team that runs their spear-phishing campaigns, and also the team that deploys network infrastructure." TA410 — said to share behavioral and tooling overlaps with  APT10  (aka Stone Panda or TA429) — has a history of targeting U.S.-based organizations in the utilities sector as well as diplomatic entities in the Middle East and Africa. Other identified victims of the hacker collective include a manufacturing company in Japan, a mining business in India, and a charity in Is
Cloudflare Thwarts Record DDoS Attack Peaking at 15 Million Requests Per Second

Cloudflare Thwarts Record DDoS Attack Peaking at 15 Million Requests Per Second

April 27, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
Cloudflare on Wednesday disclosed that it acted to mitigate a 15.3 million request-per-second (RPS) distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack. The web infrastructure and website security company called it one of the "largest HTTPS DDoS attacks on record."  "HTTPS DDoS attacks are more expensive in terms of required computational resources because of the higher cost of establishing a secure TLS encrypted connection," Cloudflare's Omer Yoachimik and Julien Desgats  said . "Therefore it costs the attacker more to launch the attack, and for the victim to mitigate it." The volumetric DDoS attack is said to have lasted less than 15 seconds and targeted an unnamed Cloudflare customer operating a crypto launchpad.  Volumetric DDoS attacks are designed to overwhelm a target network/service with significantly high volumes of malicious traffic, which typically originate from a botnet under a threat actor's control. Cloudflare said the latest attack w
Gold Ulrick Hackers Still in Action Despite Massive Conti Ransomware Leak

Gold Ulrick Hackers Still in Action Despite Massive Conti Ransomware Leak

April 26, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
The infamous ransomware group known as Conti has  continued  its onslaught against entities despite suffering a massive data leak of its own earlier this year, according to new research. Conti, attributed to a Russia-based threat actor known as Gold Ulrick , is the second most prevalent malware strain in the ransomware landscape, accounting for  19% of all attacks  during the three-month-period between October and December 2021. One of the most prolific ransomware groups of the last year along the likes of LockBit 2.0, PYSA, and Hive, Conti has locked the networks of hospitals, businesses, and government agencies, while receiving a ransom payment in exchange for sharing the decryption key as part of its name-and-shame scheme. But after the cybercriminal cartel came out in support of Russia over its invasion of Ukraine in February, an anonymous Ukrainian security researcher under the Twitter handle  ContiLeaks  began leaking the source code as well as private conversations between i
FBI Warns of BlackCat Ransomware That Breached Over 60 Organisations Worldwide

FBI Warns of BlackCat Ransomware That Breached Over 60 Organisations Worldwide

April 24, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is sounding the alarm on the BlackCat ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS), which it said victimized at least 60 entities worldwide between as of March 2022 since its emergence last November. Also called ALPHV and  Noberus , the malware is notable for being the first-ever ransomware written in the Rust programming language, which is known to be memory safe and offer improved performance. "Many of the developers and money launderers for BlackCat/ALPHV are linked to  DarkSide / BlackMatter , indicating they have extensive networks and experience with ransomware operations," the FBI said in an  advisory  published last week. The disclosure comes weeks after twin reports from  Cisco Talos  and  Kasperksy  uncovered links between BlackCat and BlackMatter ransomware families, including the use of a modified version of a data exfiltration tool dubbed Fendr that's been previously only observed in BlackMatter-related activity. "A
New Incident Report Reveals How Hive Ransomware Targets Organizations

New Incident Report Reveals How Hive Ransomware Targets Organizations

April 21, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
A recent Hive ransomware attack carried out by an affiliate involved the exploitation of "ProxyShell" vulnerabilities in the Microsoft Exchange Server that were disclosed last year to encrypt an unnamed customer's network. "The actor managed to achieve its malicious goals and encrypt the environment in less than 72 hours from the initial compromise," Varonis security researcher, Nadav Ovadia,  said  in a post-mortem analysis of the incident.  Hive, which was  first observed  in June 2021, follows the lucrative ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) scheme adopted by other cybercriminal groups in recent years, enabling affiliates to deploy the file-encrypting malware after gaining a foothold into their victims' networks. ProxyShell  — tracked as CVE-2021-31207, CVE-2021-34523, and CVE-2021-34473 — involves a combination of security feature bypass, privilege escalation, and remote code execution in the Microsoft Exchange Server, effectively granting the attacker
Five Eyes Nations Warn of Russian Cyber Attacks Against Critical Infrastructure

Five Eyes Nations Warn of Russian Cyber Attacks Against Critical Infrastructure

April 20, 2022Ravie Lakshmanan
The Five Eyes nations have released a  joint cybersecurity advisory  warning of increased  malicious attacks  from Russian state-sponsored actors and criminal groups targeting critical infrastructure organizations amidst the ongoing military siege on Ukraine. "Evolving intelligence indicates that the Russian government is exploring options for potential cyberattacks," authorities from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the U.K., and the U.S.  said . "Russia's invasion of Ukraine could expose organizations both within and beyond the region to increased malicious cyber activity. This activity may occur as a response to the unprecedented economic costs imposed on Russia as well as material support provided by the United States and U.S. allies and partners." The  advisory  follows  another alert  from the U.S. government cautioning of nation-state actors deploying specialized malware to maintain access to industrial control systems (ICS) and supervisory control an
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