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China-Linked 'Muddling Meerkat' Hijacks DNS to Map Internet on Global Scale

China-Linked 'Muddling Meerkat' Hijacks DNS to Map Internet on Global Scale

Apr 29, 2024 DNS Security / Cyber Espionage
A previously undocumented cyber threat dubbed  Muddling Meerkat  has been observed undertaking sophisticated domain name system (DNS) activities in a likely effort to evade security measures and conduct reconnaissance of networks across the world since October 2019. Cloud security firm Infoblox described the threat actor as likely affiliated with the People's Republic of China (PRC) with the ability to control the Great Firewall ( GFW ), which censors access to foreign websites and manipulates internet traffic to and from the country. The moniker is reference to the "bewildering" nature of their operations and the actor's abuse of DNS open resolvers – which are DNS servers that accept recursive queries from all IP addresses – to send queries from the Chinese IP space. "Muddling Meerkat demonstrates a sophisticated understanding of DNS that is uncommon among threat actors today – clearly pointing out that DNS is a powerful weapon leveraged by adversaries,"
PixieFail UEFI Flaws Expose Millions of Computers to RCE, DoS, and Data Theft

PixieFail UEFI Flaws Expose Millions of Computers to RCE, DoS, and Data Theft

Jan 18, 2024 Firmware Security / Vulnerability
Multiple security vulnerabilities have been disclosed in the TCP/IP network protocol stack of an open-source reference implementation of the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface ( UEFI ) specification used widely in modern computers. Collectively dubbed  PixieFail  by Quarkslab, the  nine issues  reside in the TianoCore EFI Development Kit II ( EDK II ) and could be exploited to achieve remote code execution, denial-of-service (DoS), DNS cache poisoning, and leakage of sensitive information. UEFI firmware – which is responsible for  booting the operating system  – from AMI, Intel, Insyde, and Phoenix Technologies are impacted by the shortcomings. EDK II incorporates its own TCP/IP stack called  NetworkPkg  to enable network functionalities available during the initial Preboot eXecution Environment ( PXE , pronounced "pixie") stage, which allows for management tasks in the absence of a running operating system. In other words, it is a client-server interface to  boot a
New Side Channel Attacks Re-Enable Serious DNS Cache Poisoning Attacks

New Side Channel Attacks Re-Enable Serious DNS Cache Poisoning Attacks

Nov 19, 2021
Researchers have demonstrated yet another variant of the SAD DNS cache poisoning attack that leaves about 38% of the domain name resolvers vulnerable, enabling attackers to redirect traffic originally destined to legitimate websites to a server under their control. "The  attack  allows an off-path attacker to inject a malicious DNS record into a DNS cache," University of California researchers Keyu Man, Xin'an Zhou, and Zhiyun Qian  said . "SAD DNS attack allows an attacker to redirect any traffic (originally destined to a specific domain) to his own server and then become a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacker, allowing eavesdropping and tampering of the communication." The latest flaw affects Linux kernels as well as popular DNS software, including BIND, Unbound, and dnsmasq running on top of Linux, but not when run on other operating systems FreeBSD or Windows. From Kaminsky Attack to SAD DNS DNS cache poisoning, also called DNS spoofing, is a  technique  i
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What's the Right EDR for You?

What's the Right EDR for You?

May 10, 2024Endpoint Security / Threat Detection
A guide to finding the right endpoint detection and response (EDR) solution for your business' unique needs. Cybersecurity has become an ongoing battle between hackers and small- and mid-sized businesses. Though perimeter security measures like antivirus and firewalls have traditionally served as the frontlines of defense, the battleground has shifted to endpoints. This is why endpoint detection and response (EDR) solutions now serve as critical weapons in the fight, empowering you and your organization to detect known and unknown threats, respond to them quickly, and extend the cybersecurity fight across all phases of an attack.  With the growing need to defend your devices from today's cyber threats, however, choosing the right EDR solution can be a daunting task. There are so many options and features to choose from, and not all EDR solutions are made with everyday businesses and IT teams in mind. So how do you pick the best solution for your needs? Why EDR Is a Must Because of
SAD DNS — New Flaws Re-Enable DNS Cache Poisoning Attacks

SAD DNS — New Flaws Re-Enable DNS Cache Poisoning Attacks

Nov 13, 2020
A group of academics from the University of California and Tsinghua University has uncovered a series of critical security flaws that could lead to a revival of DNS cache poisoning attacks. Dubbed " SAD DNS attack " (short for Side-channel AttackeD DNS), the technique makes it possible for a malicious actor to carry out an off-path attack, rerouting any traffic originally destined to a specific domain to a server under their control, thereby allowing them to eavesdrop and tamper with the communications. "This represents an important milestone — the first weaponizable network side channel attack that has serious security impacts," the researchers said. "The attack allows an off-path attacker to inject a malicious DNS record into a DNS cache." Tracked as CVE-2020-25705, the findings were presented at the ACM Conference on Computer, and Communications Security (CCS '20) held this week. The flaw affects operating systems Linux 3.18-5.10, Windows Serv
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