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Realtek Vulnerability Under Attack: Over 134 Million Attempts to Hack IoT Devices

Realtek Vulnerability Under Attack: Over 134 Million Attempts to Hack IoT Devices

Jan 30, 2023 Internet of Things / Malware
Researchers are warning about a spike in exploitation attempts weaponizing a now-patched critical remote code execution flaw in Realtek Jungle SDK since the start of August 2022. According to Palo Alto Networks Unit 42, the ongoing campaign is said to have recorded 134 million exploit attempts as of December 2022, with 97% of the attacks occurring in the past four months. Close to 50% of the attacks originated from the U.S. (48.3%), followed by Vietnam (17.8%), Russia (14.6%), The Netherlands (7.4%), France (6.4%), Germany (2.3%0, and Luxembourg (1.6%). What's more, 95% of the attacks leveraging the security shortcoming that emanated from Russia singled out organizations in Australia. "Many of the attacks we observed tried to deliver malware to infect vulnerable IoT devices," Unit 42 researchers  said  in a report, adding "threat groups are using this vulnerability to carry out large-scale attacks on smart devices around the world." The vulnerability in q
Iranian Government Entities Under Attack by New Wave of BackdoorDiplomacy Attacks

Iranian Government Entities Under Attack by New Wave of BackdoorDiplomacy Attacks

Jan 18, 2023 Cyber Espionage / Cyber Risk
The threat actor known as  BackdoorDiplomacy  has been linked to a new wave of attacks targeting Iranian government entities between July and late December 2022. Palo Alto Networks Unit 42, which is tracking the activity under its  constellation-themed  moniker  Playful Taurus , said it observed the government domains attempting to connect to malware infrastructure previously identified as associated with the adversary. Also known by the names APT15, KeChang, NICKEL, and Vixen Panda, the Chinese APT group has a history of cyber espionage campaigns aimed at government and diplomatic entities across North America, South America, Africa, and the Middle East at least since 2010. Slovak cybersecurity firm ESET, in June 2021,  unpacked  the intrusions mounted by the hacking crew against diplomatic entities and telecommunication companies in Africa and the Middle East using a custom implant known as Turian. Then in December 2021, Microsoft  announced  the seizure of 42 domains operated
Hackers Using CAPTCHA Bypass Tactics in Freejacking Campaign on GitHub

Hackers Using CAPTCHA Bypass Tactics in Freejacking Campaign on GitHub

Jan 06, 2023 Cryptocurrency / GitHub
A South Africa-based threat actor known as Automated Libra has been observed employing CAPTCHA bypass techniques to create GitHub accounts in a programmatic fashion as part of a freejacking campaign dubbed PURPLEURCHIN. The group "primarily targets cloud platforms offering limited-time trials of cloud resources in order to perform their crypto mining operations," Palo Alto Networks Unit 42 researchers William Gamazo and Nathaniel Quist  said . PURPLEURCHIN first came to light in October 2022 when Sysdig  disclosed  that the adversary created as many as 30 GitHub accounts, 2,000 Heroku accounts, and 900 Buddy accounts to scale its operation. Now according to Unit 42, the cloud threat actor group created three to five GitHub accounts every minute at the height of its activity in November 2022, totally setting up over 130,000 bogus accounts across Heroku, Togglebox, and GitHub. More than 22,000 GitHub accounts are estimated to have been created between September and Novemb
Russian Hackers Targeted Petroleum Refinery in NATO Country During Ukraine War

Russian Hackers Targeted Petroleum Refinery in NATO Country During Ukraine War

Dec 20, 2022 Cyber War / Cyber Attack
The Russia-linked Gamaredon group attempted to unsuccessfully break into a large petroleum refining company within a NATO member state earlier this year amid the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war. The attack, which took place on August 30, 2022, is just one of multiple intrusions orchestrated by the advanced persistent threat (APT) that's attributed to Russia's Federal Security Service ( FSB ). Gamaredon , also known by the monikers Actinium, Armageddon, Iron Tilden, Primitive Bear, Shuckworm, Trident Ursa, and Winterflounder, has a history of primarily going after Ukrainian entities and, to a lesser extent, NATO allies to harvest sensitive data. "As the conflict has continued on the ground and in cyberspace, Trident Ursa has been operating as a dedicated access creator and intelligence gatherer," Palo Alto Networks Unit 42  said  in a report shared with The Hacker News. "Trident Ursa remains one of the most pervasive, intrusive, continuously active and focused AP
Researchers Detail New Attack Method to Bypass Popular Web Application Firewalls

Researchers Detail New Attack Method to Bypass Popular Web Application Firewalls

Dec 10, 2022 Web App Firewall / Web Security
A new attack method can be used to circumvent web application firewalls (WAFs) of various vendors and infiltrate systems, potentially enabling attackers to gain access to sensitive business and customer information. Web application firewalls are a  key line of defense  to help filter, monitor, and block HTTP(S) traffic to and from a web application, and safeguard against attacks such as cross-site forgery, cross-site-scripting (XSS), file inclusion, and SQL injection (SQLi). The generic bypass "involves appending  JSON syntax  to SQL injection payloads that a WAF is unable to parse," Claroty researcher Noam Moshe  said . "Most WAFs will easily detect SQLi attacks, but prepending JSON to SQL syntax left the WAF blind to these attacks." The industrial and IoT cybersecurity company said its technique successfully worked against WAFs from vendors like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cloudflare, F5, Imperva, and Palo Alto Networks, all of whom have since released updates
Researchers Detail OriginLogger RAT — Successor to Agent Tesla Malware

Researchers Detail OriginLogger RAT — Successor to Agent Tesla Malware

Sep 14, 2022
Palo Alto Networks Unit 42 has detailed the inner workings of a malware called  OriginLogger , which has been touted as a successor to the widely used information stealer and remote access trojan (RAT) known as  Agent Tesla . A .NET based keylogger and remote access, Agent Tesla has had a long-standing presence in the threat landscape, allowing malicious actors to gain remote access to targeted systems and beacon sensitive information to an actor-controlled domain. Known to be used in the wild since 2014, it's advertised for sale on dark web forums and is generally distributed through malicious spam emails as an attachment. In February 2021, cybersecurity firm Sophos  disclosed two new variants  of the commodity malware (version 2 and 3) that featured capabilities to steal credentials from web browsers, email apps, and VPN clients, as well as use Telegram API for command-and-control. Now according to Unit 42 researcher Jeff White, what has been tagged as Agent Tesla version 3
CISA Warns of Active Exploitation of Palo Alto Networks' PAN-OS Vulnerability

CISA Warns of Active Exploitation of Palo Alto Networks' PAN-OS Vulnerability

Aug 23, 2022
The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) on Monday  added  a security flaw impacting Palo Alto Networks PAN-OS to its  Known Exploited Vulnerabilities Catalog , based on evidence of active exploitation. The high-severity vulnerability, tracked as  CVE-2022-0028  (CVSS score: 8.6), is a URL filtering policy misconfiguration that could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to carry out reflected and amplified TCP denial-of-service (DoS) attacks. "If exploited, this issue would not impact the confidentiality, integrity, or availability of our products," Palo Alto Networks said in an alert. "However, the resulting denial-of-service (DoS) attack may help obfuscate the identity of the attacker and implicate the firewall as the source of the attack. The weakness impacts the following product versions and has been addressed as part of updates released this month - PAN-OS 10.2 (version < 10.2.2-h2) PAN-OS 10.1 (version < 10.1.6-h6) PAN-O
Russian Hackers Using DropBox and Google Drive to Drop Malicious Payloads

Russian Hackers Using DropBox and Google Drive to Drop Malicious Payloads

Jul 20, 2022
The Russian state-sponsored hacking collective known as APT29 has been attributed to a new phishing campaign that takes advantage of legitimate cloud services like Google Drive and Dropbox to deliver malicious payloads on compromised systems. "These campaigns are believed to have targeted several Western diplomatic missions between May and June 2022," Palo Alto Networks Unit 42  said  in a Tuesday report. "The lures included in these campaigns suggest targeting of a foreign embassy in Portugal as well as a foreign embassy in Brazil." APT29, also tracked under the monikers Cozy Bear, Cloaked Ursa, or The Dukes, has been characterized as an organized cyberespionage group working to collect intelligence that aligns with Russia's strategic objectives. Some aspects of the advanced persistent threat's activities, including the infamous  SolarWinds supply chain attack  of 2020, are separately tracked by Microsoft under the name Nobelium, with Mandiant calling i
Hackers Targeting VoIP Servers By Exploiting Digium Phone Software

Hackers Targeting VoIP Servers By Exploiting Digium Phone Software

Jul 16, 2022
VoIP phones using Digium's software have been targeted to drop a web shell on their servers as part of an attack campaign designed to exfiltrate data by downloading and executing additional payloads. "The malware installs multilayer obfuscated PHP backdoors to the web server's file system, downloads new payloads for execution, and schedules recurring tasks to re-infect the host system," Palo Alto Networks Unit 42  said  in a Friday report. The unusual activity is said to have commenced in mid-December 2021 and targets Asterisk, a widely used software implementation of a private branch exchange (PBX) that runs on the open-source Elastix Unified Communications Server. Unit 42 said the intrusions share similarities with the  INJ3CTOR3 campaign  that Israeli cybersecurity firm Check Point disclosed in November 2020, alluding to the possibility that they could be a "resurgence" of the previous attacks. Coinciding with the sudden surge is the public disclos
Hackers Abusing BRc4 Red Team Penetration Tool in Attacks to Evade Detection

Hackers Abusing BRc4 Red Team Penetration Tool in Attacks to Evade Detection

Jul 06, 2022
Malicious actors have been observed abusing legitimate adversary simulation software in their attacks in an attempt to stay under the radar and evade detection. Palo Alto Networks Unit 42 said a  malware sample  uploaded to the VirusTotal database on May 19, 2022, contained a payload associated with Brute Ratel C4, a relatively new sophisticated toolkit "designed to avoid detection by endpoint detection and response (EDR) and antivirus (AV) capabilities." Authored by an Indian security researcher named  Chetan Nayak , Brute Ratel (BRc4) is analogous to Cobalt Strike and is  described  as a "customized command-and-control center for red team and adversary simulation." The commercial software was first released in late 2020 and has since gained over 480 licenses across 350 customers. Each license is offered at $2,500 per user for a year, after which it can be renewed for the same duration at the cost of $2,250. BRc4 is equipped with a wide variety of features,
Learn Cybersecurity with Palo Alto Networks Through this PCCSA Course @ 93% OFF

Learn Cybersecurity with Palo Alto Networks Through this PCCSA Course @ 93% OFF

Jun 18, 2022
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Report: Nearly 75% of Infusion Pumps Affected by Severe Vulnerabilities

Report: Nearly 75% of Infusion Pumps Affected by Severe Vulnerabilities

Mar 03, 2022
An analysis of data crowdsourced from more than 200,000 network-connected infusion pumps used in hospitals and healthcare entities has revealed that 75% of those medical devices contain security weaknesses that could put them at risk of potential exploitation. "These shortcomings included exposure to one or more of some 40 known cybersecurity vulnerabilities and/or alerts that they had one or more of some 70 other types of known security shortcomings for IoT devices," Unit 42 security researcher Aveek Das  said  in a report published Wednesday. Palo Alto Networks' threat intelligence team said it obtained the scans from seven medical device manufacturers. On top of that, 52.11% of all infusion pumps scanned were susceptible to two known vulnerabilities that were disclosed in 2019 as part of 11 flaws collectively called " URGENT/11 " – CVE-2019-12255  (CVSS score: 9.8) – A buffer overflow flaw in the TCP component of Wind River VxWorks CVE-2019-12264  (CVS
Palo Alto Warns of Zero-Day Bug in Firewalls Using GlobalProtect Portal VPN

Palo Alto Warns of Zero-Day Bug in Firewalls Using GlobalProtect Portal VPN

Nov 11, 2021
A new zero-day vulnerability has been disclosed in Palo Alto Networks GlobalProtect VPN that could be abused by an unauthenticated network-based attacker to execute arbitrary code on affected devices with root user privileges. Tracked as CVE-2021-3064 (CVSS score: 9.8), the security weakness impacts PAN-OS 8.1 versions earlier than PAN-OS 8.1.17. Massachusetts-based cybersecurity firm Randori has been credited with discovering and reporting the issue. "The vulnerability chain consists of a method for bypassing validations made by an external web server (HTTP smuggling) and a stack-based buffer overflow," Randori researchers  said . "Exploitation of the vulnerability chain has been proven and allows for remote code execution on both physical and virtual firewall products." However, in a troubling turn of events, the company said it used this exploit as part of its red team engagements for nearly 10 months before disclosing it to Palo Alto Networks in late Septem
Experts Detail Malicious Code Dropped Using ManageEngine ADSelfService Exploit

Experts Detail Malicious Code Dropped Using ManageEngine ADSelfService Exploit

Nov 08, 2021
At least nine entities across the technology, defense, healthcare, energy, and education industries were compromised by leveraging a  recently patched critical vulnerability  in Zoho's ManageEngine ADSelfService Plus self-service password management and single sign-on (SSO) solution. The spying campaign, which was observed starting September 22, 2021, involved the threat actor taking advantage of the flaw to gain initial access to targeted organizations, before moving laterally through the network to carry out post-exploitation activities by deploying malicious tools designed to harvest credentials and exfiltrate sensitive information via a backdoor. "The actor heavily relies on the Godzilla web shell, uploading several variations of the open-source web shell to the compromised server over the course of the operation," researchers from Palo Alto Networks' Unit 42 threat intelligence team  said  in a report. "Several other tools have novel characteristics or ha
Dashboards to Use on Palo Alto Networks for Effective Management

Dashboards to Use on Palo Alto Networks for Effective Management

Jul 09, 2019
Enterprises should expect to see more cyberattacks launched against them. The data that they now gather and store have made their infrastructures key targets for hackers. Customer data and intellectual property can be sold in the black market for profit, and sensitive information can also be used by hackers to extort them. Enterprises are now aggressively shifting their workloads to the cloud which, while it has many benefits, expands their defensive perimeter and exposes them to further risks as well. As such, organizations are now widely investing in various security solutions in order to comprehensively protect their networks. Gartner expects security spending to exceed $124 billion this year. Solutions such as firewalls and threat prevention tools have increasingly become essential for enterprises. Leading firewall provider Palo Alto Networks , for example, provides companies with various measures to protect their infrastructures. It's currently being used by tens
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