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SolarWinds Issues Second Hotfix for Orion Platform Supply Chain Attack

SolarWinds Issues Second Hotfix for Orion Platform Supply Chain Attack

December 15, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Network monitoring services provider SolarWinds officially released a second hotfix to address a critical vulnerability in its Orion platform that was  exploited to insert malware  and breach public and private entities in a wide-ranging espionage campaign. In a new update posted to its  advisory  page, the company urged its customers to update Orion Platform to version 2020.2.1 HF 2 immediately to secure their environments. The malware, dubbed SUNBURST (aka Solorigate), affects Orion app versions 2019.4 through 2020.2.1, released between March 2020 and June 2020. "Based on our investigation, we are not aware that this vulnerability affects other versions—including future versions—of Orion Platform products," the company said. "We have scanned the code of all our software products for markers similar to those used in the attack on our Orion Platform products identified above, and we have found no evidence that other versions of our Orion Platform products or our ot
Wormable Gitpaste-12 Botnet Returns to Target Linux Servers, IoT Devices

Wormable Gitpaste-12 Botnet Returns to Target Linux Servers, IoT Devices

December 15, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A new wormable botnet that spreads via GitHub and Pastebin to install cryptocurrency miners and backdoors on target systems has returned with expanded capabilities to compromise web applications, IP cameras, and routers. Early last month, researchers from Juniper Threat Labs documented a crypto-mining campaign called " Gitpaste-12 ," which used GitHub to host malicious code containing as many as 12 known attack modules that are executed via commands downloaded from a Pastebin URL. The attacks occurred during a 12-day period starting from October 15, 2020, before both the Pastebin URL and repository were shut down on October 30, 2020. Now according to Juniper, the  second wave of attacks  began on November 10 using payloads from a different GitHub repository, which, among others, contains a Linux crypto-miner ("ls"), a file with a list of passwords for brute-force attempts ("pass"), and a local privilege escalation exploit for x86_64 Linux systems. Th
Nearly 18,000 SolarWinds Customers Installed Backdoored Software

Nearly 18,000 SolarWinds Customers Installed Backdoored Software

December 15, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
SolarWinds, the enterprise monitoring software provider which found itself at the epicenter of the most  consequential supply chain attacks , said as many as 18,000 of its high-profile customers might have installed a tainted version of its Orion products. The acknowledgment comes as part of a new filing made by the company to the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday. The Texas-based company serves more than 300,000 customers worldwide, including every branch of the US military and four-fifths of the Fortune 500 companies. The "incident was likely the result of a highly sophisticated, targeted and manual supply chain attack by an outside nation state," SolarWinds said in the  regulatory disclosure , adding it "currently believes the actual number of customers that may have had an installation of the Orion products that contained this vulnerability to be fewer than 18,000." The company also reiterated in its  security advisory  that besides 2019.4 HF
Exfiltrating Data from Air-Gapped Computers via Wi-Fi Signals (Without Wi-Fi Hardware)

Exfiltrating Data from Air-Gapped Computers via Wi-Fi Signals (Without Wi-Fi Hardware)

December 14, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A security researcher has demonstrated that sensitive data could be exfiltrated from air-gapped computers via a novel technique that leverages Wi-Fi signals as a covert channel—surprisingly, without requiring the presence of Wi-Fi hardware on the targeted systems. Dubbed " AIR-FI ," the attack hinges on deploying a specially designed malware in a compromised system that exploits "DDR SDRAM buses to generate electromagnetic emissions in the 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi bands" and transmitting information atop these frequencies that can then be intercepted and decoded by nearby Wi-Fi capable devices such as smartphones, laptops, and IoT devices before sending the data to remote servers controlled by an attacker. The findings were published today in a paper titled "AIR-FI: Generating Covert Wi-Fi Signals from Air-Gapped Computers" by Dr. Mordechai Guri , the head of R&D at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev's Cyber-Security Research Center, Israel. "The AI
SoReL-20M: A Huge Dataset of 20 Million Malware Samples Released Online

SoReL-20M: A Huge Dataset of 20 Million Malware Samples Released Online

December 14, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity firms Sophos and ReversingLabs on Monday jointly released the first-ever production-scale malware research dataset to be made available to the general public that aims to build effective defenses and drive industry-wide improvements in security detection and response. " SoReL-20M " (short for  So phos- Re versing L abs –  20   M illion), as it's called, is a dataset containing metadata, labels, and features for 20 million Windows Portable Executable (.PE) files, including 10 million disarmed malware samples, with the goal of devising machine-learning approaches for better malware detection capabilities. "Open knowledge and understanding about cyber threats also leads to more predictive cybersecurity," Sophos AI group said. "Defenders will be able to anticipate what attackers are doing and be better prepared for their next move." Accompanying the release are a set of  PyTorch  and  LightGBM -based machine learning  models pre-trained
Mount Locker Ransomware Offering Double Extortion Scheme to Other Hackers

Mount Locker Ransomware Offering Double Extortion Scheme to Other Hackers

December 11, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A relatively new ransomware strain behind a series of breaches on corporate networks has developed new capabilities that allow it to broaden the scope of its targeting and evade security software—as well as with ability for its affiliates to launch double extortion attacks. The MountLocker ransomware, which only began making the rounds in July 2020, has already gained notoriety for stealing files before encryption and demanding ransom amounts in the millions to prevent public disclosure of stolen data, a tactic known as  double extortion . "The MountLocker Operators are clearly just warming up. After a slow start in July they are rapidly gaining ground, as the high-profile nature of extortion and data leaks drive ransom demands ever higher," researchers from BlackBerry Research and Intelligence Team said. "MountLocker affiliates are typically fast operators, rapidly exfiltrating sensitive documents and encrypting them across key targets in a matter of hours."
Watch Out! Adrozek Malware Hijacking Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Yandex Browsers

Watch Out! Adrozek Malware Hijacking Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Yandex Browsers

December 11, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft on Thursday took the wraps off an ongoing campaign impacting popular web browsers that stealthily injects malware-infested ads into search results to earn money via affiliate advertising. "Adrozek," as it's called by the Microsoft 365 Defender Research Team, employs an "expansive, dynamic attacker infrastructure" consisting of 159 unique domains, each of which hosts an average of 17,300 unique URLs, which in turn host more than 15,300 unique malware samples. The campaign — which impacts Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, Yandex Browser, and Mozilla Firefox browsers on Windows — aims to insert additional, unauthorized ads on top of legitimate ads displayed on search engine results pages, leading users to click on these ads inadvertently. Microsoft said the persistent browser modifier malware has been observed since May this year, with over 30,000 devices affected every day at its peak in August. "Cybercriminals abusing affiliate programs is not
Russian APT28 Hackers Using COVID-19 as Bait to Deliver Zebrocy Malware

Russian APT28 Hackers Using COVID-19 as Bait to Deliver Zebrocy Malware

December 09, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A Russian threat actor known for its malware campaigns has reappeared in the threat landscape with yet another attack leveraging COVID-19 as phishing lures, once again indicating how adversaries are adept at repurposing the current world events to their advantage. Linking the operation to a sub-group of APT28 (aka Sofacy, Sednit, Fancy Bear, or STRONTIUM), cybersecurity firm Intezer said the pandemic-themed phishing emails were employed to deliver the Go version of Zebrocy (or Zekapab) malware. The cybersecurity firm told The Hacker News that the campaigns were observed late last month. Zebrocy is delivered primarily via phishing attacks that contain decoy Microsoft Office documents with macros as well as executable file attachments. First spotted in the wild in 2015 , the operators behind the malware have been found to overlap with GreyEnergy , a threat group believed to be the successor of BlackEnergy aka Sandworm , suggesting its role as a sub-group with links to Sofacy and
Amnesia:33 — Critical TCP/IP Flaws Affect Millions of IoT Devices

Amnesia:33 — Critical TCP/IP Flaws Affect Millions of IoT Devices

December 09, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers disclosed a dozen new flaws in multiple widely-used embedded TCP/IP stacks impacting millions of devices ranging from networking equipment and medical devices to industrial control systems that could be exploited by an attacker to take control of a vulnerable system. Collectively called " AMNESIA:33 " by Forescout researchers, it is a set of 33 vulnerabilities that impact four open-source TCP/IP protocol stacks — uIP, FNET, picoTCP, and Nut/Net — that are commonly used in Internet-of-Things (IoT) and embedded devices. As a consequence of improper memory management,  successful exploitation  of these flaws could cause memory corruption, allowing attackers to compromise devices, execute malicious code, perform denial-of-service (DoS) attacks, steal sensitive information, and even poison DNS cache. In the real world, these attacks could play out in various ways: disrupting the functioning of a power station to result in a blackout or taking smoke a
Payment Card Skimmer Group Using Raccoon Info-Stealer to Siphon Off Data

Payment Card Skimmer Group Using Raccoon Info-Stealer to Siphon Off Data

December 07, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A cybercrime group known for targeting e-commerce websites unleashed a "multi-stage malicious campaign" earlier this year designed with an intent to distribute information stealers and JavaScript-based payment skimmers. In a new report published today and shared with The Hacker News, Singapore-based cybersecurity firm Group-IB attributed the operation to the same group that's been linked to a separate attack aimed at online merchants using password-stealing malware to infect their websites with  FakeSecurity JavaScript-sniffers  (JS-sniffers). The campaign progressed in four waves, starting in February and ending in September, with the operators relying on specially-crafted phishing pages and lure documents laced with malicious macros to download Vidar and Raccoon information stealers onto victim systems. The ultimate goal of the attack, the researchers noted, was to steal payment and user data via several attack vectors and tools to deliver the malware. The fake we
Hackers-For-Hire Group Develops New 'PowerPepper' In-Memory Malware

Hackers-For-Hire Group Develops New 'PowerPepper' In-Memory Malware

December 04, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers on Thursday disclosed details of a previously undiscovered in-memory Windows backdoor developed by a hacker-for-hire operation that can execute remotely malicious code and steal sensitive information from its targets in Asia, Europe, and the US. Dubbed " PowerPepper " by Kaspersky researchers, the malware has been attributed to the  DeathStalker  group (formerly called Deceptikons), a threat actor that has been found to hit law firms and companies in the financial sector located in Europe and the Middle East at least since 2012. The hacking tool is so-called because of its reliance on steganographic trickery to deliver the backdoor payload in the form of an image of ferns or peppers. The espionage group first came to light  earlier this July , with most of their attacks starting with a spear-phishing email containing a malicious modified LNK (shortcut) file that, when clicked, downloads and runs a PowerShell-based implant named Powersing. While
TrickBot Malware Gets UEFI/BIOS Bootkit Feature to Remain Undetected

TrickBot Malware Gets UEFI/BIOS Bootkit Feature to Remain Undetected

December 03, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
TrickBot , one of the most notorious and adaptable malware botnets in the world, is expanding its toolset to set its sights on firmware vulnerabilities to potentially deploy bootkits and take complete control of an infected system. The new functionality, dubbed " TrickBoot " by Advanced Intelligence (AdvIntel) and Eclypsium, makes use of readily available tools to check devices for well-known vulnerabilities that can allow attackers to inject malicious code in the UEFI/BIOS firmware of a device, granting the attackers an effective mechanism of persistent malware storage. "This marks a significant step in the evolution of TrickBot as UEFI level implants are the deepest, most powerful, and stealthy form of bootkits," the researchers said. "By adding the ability to canvas victim devices for specific UEFI/BIOS firmware vulnerabilities, TrickBot actors are able to target specific victims with firmware-level persistence that survives re-imaging or even device br
Experts Uncover 'Crutch' Russian Malware Used in APT Attacks for 5 Years

Experts Uncover 'Crutch' Russian Malware Used in APT Attacks for 5 Years

December 02, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers today took the wraps off a previously undocumented backdoor and document stealer that has been deployed against specific targets from 2015 to early 2020. Codenamed " Crutch " by ESET researchers, the malware has been attributed to  Turla  (aka Venomous Bear or Snake), a Russia-based advanced hacker group known for its extensive attacks against governments, embassies, and military organizations through various watering hole and spear-phishing campaigns. "These tools were designed to exfiltrate sensitive documents and other files to Dropbox accounts controlled by Turla operators," the cybersecurity firm said in an analysis shared with The Hacker News. The backdoor implants were secretly installed on several machines belonging to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in an unnamed country of the European Union. Besides identifying strong links between a Crutch sample from 2016 and Turla's yet another second-stage backdoor called  Gazer , t
Nation-State Hackers Caught Hiding Espionage Activities Behind Crypto Miners

Nation-State Hackers Caught Hiding Espionage Activities Behind Crypto Miners

December 01, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A nation-state actor known for its cyber espionage campaigns since 2012 is now using coin miner techniques to stay under the radar and establish persistence on victim systems, according to new research. Attributing the shift to a threat actor tracked as Bismuth, Microsoft's Microsoft 365 Defender Threat Intelligence Team said the group deployed Monero coin miners in attacks that targeted both the private sector and government institutions in France and Vietnam between July and August earlier this year. "The coin miners also allowed Bismuth to hide its more nefarious activities behind threats that may be perceived to be less alarming because they're 'commodity' malware," the researchers  said  in an analysis published yesterday. The primary victims of the attack have been traced to state-owned enterprises in Vietnam and entities with ties to a Vietnamese government agency. The Windows maker likened Bismuth to  OceanLotus  (or APT32), linking it to spyware
Digitally Signed Bandook Malware Once Again Targets Multiple Sectors

Digitally Signed Bandook Malware Once Again Targets Multiple Sectors

November 27, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A cyberespionage group with suspected ties to the Kazakh and Lebanese governments has unleashed a new wave of attacks against a multitude of industries with a retooled version of a 13-year-old backdoor Trojan. Check Point Research called out hackers affiliated with a group named  Dark Caracal  in a  new report  published yesterday for their efforts to deploy "dozens of digitally signed variants" of the  Bandook  Windows Trojan over the past year, thus once again "reigniting interest in this old malware family." The different verticals singled out by the threat actor include government, financial, energy, food industry, healthcare, education, IT, and legal institutions located in Chile, Cyprus, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Singapore, Switzerland, Turkey, and the US. The unusually large variety of targeted markets and locations "reinforces a previous hypothesis that the malware is not developed in-house and used by a single entity, but is part of an offensive
Interpol Arrests 3 Nigerian BEC Scammers For Targeting Over 500,000 Entities

Interpol Arrests 3 Nigerian BEC Scammers For Targeting Over 500,000 Entities

November 25, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Three Nigerian citizens suspected of being members of an organized cybercrime group behind distributing malware, carrying out phishing campaigns, and extensive Business Email Compromise (BEC) scams have been arrested in the city of Lagos, Interpol reported yesterday. The investigation, dubbed " Operation Falcon ," was jointly undertaken by the international police organization along with Singapore-based cybersecurity firm Group-IB and the Nigeria Police Force, the principal law enforcement agency in the country. About 50,000 targeted victims of the criminal schemes have been identified so far, as the probe continues to track down other suspected gang members and the monetization methods employed by the group. Group-IB's participation in the year-long operation came as part of Interpol's Project Gateway, which provides a framework for agreements with selected private sector partners and receives threat intel directly. "The suspects are alleged to have develo
Evolution of Emotet: From Banking Trojan to Malware Distributor

Evolution of Emotet: From Banking Trojan to Malware Distributor

November 19, 2020The Hacker News
Emotet is one of the most dangerous and widespread malware threats active today. Ever since its discovery in 2014—when Emotet was a standard credential stealer and banking Trojan, the malware has evolved into a modular, polymorphic platform for distributing other kinds of computer viruses. Being constantly under development, Emotet updates itself regularly to improve stealthiness, persistence, and add new spying capabilities. This notorious Trojan is one of the most frequently malicious programs found in the wild. Usually, it is a part of a phishing attack, email spam that infects PCs with malware and spreads among other computers in the network. If you'd like to find out more about the malware, collect IOCs, and get fresh samples, check the following article in the Malware trends tracker , the service with dynamic articles. Emotet is the most uploaded malware throughout the past few years. Here below is the rating of uploads to ANY.RUN service in 2019, where users ran over
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