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Exposed Docker APIs Under Attack in 'Commando Cat' Cryptojacking Campaign

Exposed Docker APIs Under Attack in 'Commando Cat' Cryptojacking Campaign

Feb 01, 2024 Cryptojacking / Linux Security
Exposed Docker API endpoints over the internet are under assault from a sophisticated cryptojacking campaign called  Commando Cat . "The campaign deploys a benign container generated using the  Commando project ," Cado security researchers Nate Bill and Matt Muir  said  in a new report published today. "The attacker  escapes this container  and runs multiple payloads on the Docker host." The campaign is believed to have been active since the start of 2024, making it the second such campaign to be discovered in as many months. In mid-January, the cloud security firm also shed light on  another activity cluster  that targets vulnerable Docker hosts to deploy XMRig cryptocurrency miner as well as the 9Hits Viewer software. Commando Cat employs Docker as an initial access vector to deliver a collection of interdependent payloads from an actor-controlled server that is responsible for registering persistence, backdooring the host, exfiltrating cloud service provider
Hackers Exploiting Ivanti VPN Flaws to Deploy KrustyLoader Malware

Hackers Exploiting Ivanti VPN Flaws to Deploy KrustyLoader Malware

Jan 31, 2024 Cyber Attack / Network Security
A pair of recently disclosed zero-day flaws in Ivanti Connect Secure (ICS) virtual private network (VPN) devices have been exploited to deliver a Rust-based payload called  KrustyLoader  that's used to drop the open-source Sliver adversary simulation tool. The  security vulnerabilities , tracked as CVE-2023-46805 (CVSS score: 8.2) and CVE-2024-21887 (CVSS score: 9.1), could be abused in tandem to achieve unauthenticated remote code execution on susceptible appliances. As of January 26,  patches for the two flaws  have been delayed, although the software company has released a temporary mitigation through an XML file. Volexity, which first shed light on the shortcomings, said they have been weaponized as zero-days since December 3, 2023, by a Chinese nation-state threat actor it tracks under the name UTA0178. Google-owned Mandiant has assigned the moniker UNC5221 to the group. Following public disclosure earlier this month, the vulnerabilities have  come under broad exploitati
Code Keepers: Mastering Non-Human Identity Management

Code Keepers: Mastering Non-Human Identity Management

Apr 12, 2024DevSecOps / Identity Management
Identities now transcend human boundaries. Within each line of code and every API call lies a non-human identity. These entities act as programmatic access keys, enabling authentication and facilitating interactions among systems and services, which are essential for every API call, database query, or storage account access. As we depend on multi-factor authentication and passwords to safeguard human identities, a pressing question arises: How do we guarantee the security and integrity of these non-human counterparts? How do we authenticate, authorize, and regulate access for entities devoid of life but crucial for the functioning of critical systems? Let's break it down. The challenge Imagine a cloud-native application as a bustling metropolis of tiny neighborhoods known as microservices, all neatly packed into containers. These microservices function akin to diligent worker bees, each diligently performing its designated task, be it processing data, verifying credentials, or
New Docker Malware Steals CPU for Crypto & Drives Fake Website Traffic

New Docker Malware Steals CPU for Crypto & Drives Fake Website Traffic

Jan 18, 2024 Server Security / Cryptocurrency
Vulnerable Docker services are being targeted by a novel campaign in which the threat actors are deploying XMRig cryptocurrency miner as well as the 9Hits Viewer software as part of a multi-pronged monetization strategy. "This is the first documented case of malware deploying the 9Hits application as a payload," cloud security firm Cado said , adding the development is a sign that adversaries are always on the lookout for diversifying their strategies to make money off compromised hosts. 9Hits advertises itself as a "unique web traffic solution" and an "automatic traffic exchange" that allows members of the service to drive traffic to their sites in exchange for purchasing credits. This is accomplished by means of a software called 9Hits Viewer, which runs a headless Chrome browser instance to visit websites requested by other members, for which they earn credits to pay for generating traffic to their sites. The exact method used to spread the malwa
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Beware: 3 Malicious PyPI Packages Found Targeting Linux with Crypto Miners

Beware: 3 Malicious PyPI Packages Found Targeting Linux with Crypto Miners

Jan 04, 2024 Cryptocurrency Miner / Malware
Three new malicious packages have been discovered in the Python Package Index (PyPI) open-source repository with capabilities to deploy a cryptocurrency miner on affected Linux devices. The three harmful packages, named modularseven, driftme, and catme, attracted a total of 431 downloads over the past month before they were taken down. "These packages, upon initial use, deploy a CoinMiner executable on Linux devices," Fortinet FortiGuard Labs researcher Gabby Xiong  said , adding the activity shares overlaps with a  prior campaign  that involved the use of a package called culturestreak to deploy a crypto miner. The malicious code resides in the __init__.py file, which decodes and retrieves the first stage from a remote server, a shell script ("unmi.sh") that fetches a configuration file for the mining activity as well as the CoinMiner file  hosted on GitLab . The  ELF binary  file is then executed in the background using the  nohup command , thus ensuring that the process contin
StripedFly Malware Operated Unnoticed for 5 Years, Infecting 1 Million Devices

StripedFly Malware Operated Unnoticed for 5 Years, Infecting 1 Million Devices

Nov 04, 2023 Cyber Threat / Malware
An advanced strain of malware masquerading as a cryptocurrency miner has managed to fly the radar for over five years, infecting no less than one million devices around the world in the process. That's according to findings from Kaspersky, which has codenamed the threat  StripedFly , describing it as an "intricate modular framework that supports both Linux and Windows." The Russian cybersecurity vendor, which first detected the samples in 2017, said the miner is part of a much larger entity that employs a custom  EternalBlue SMBv1 exploit  attributed to the Equation Group in order to infiltrate publicly-accessible systems. The malicious shellcode, delivered via the exploit, has the ability to download binary files from a remote Bitbucket repository as well as execute PowerShell scripts. It also supports a collection of plugin-like expandable features to harvest sensitive data and even uninstall itself. The platform's shellcode is injected in the  wininit.exe proc
Cybercriminals Targeting Apache NiFi Instances for Cryptocurrency Mining

Cybercriminals Targeting Apache NiFi Instances for Cryptocurrency Mining

May 31, 2023 Server Security / Cryptocurrency
A financially motivated threat actor is actively scouring the internet for unprotected  Apache NiFi instances  to covertly install a cryptocurrency miner and facilitate lateral movement. The findings come from the SANS Internet Storm Center (ISC), which detected a spike in HTTP requests for "/nifi" on May 19, 2023. "Persistence is achieved via timed processors or entries to cron,"  said  Dr. Johannes Ullrich, dean of research for SANS Technology Institute. "The attack script is not saved to the system. The attack scripts are kept in memory only." A honeypot setup allowed the ISC to determine that the initial foothold is weaponized to drop a shell script that removes the "/var/log/syslog" file, disables the firewall, and terminates competing crypto-mining tools, before downloading and launching the Kinsing malware from a remote server. It's worth pointing out that  Kinsing  has a  track record  of  leveraging  publicly disclosed vulnerabilities in publicly accessible web applicati
New shc-based Linux Malware Targeting Systems with Cryptocurrency Miner

New shc-based Linux Malware Targeting Systems with Cryptocurrency Miner

Jan 04, 2023 Linux / Cryptocurrency
A new Linux malware developed using the shell script compiler ( shc ) has been observed deploying a cryptocurrency miner on compromised systems. "It is presumed that after successful authentication through a dictionary attack on inadequately managed Linux SSH servers, various malware were installed on the target system," AhnLab Security Emergency Response Center (ASEC)  said  in a report published today. shc allows shell scripts to be converted directly into binaries, offering protections against unauthorized source code modifications. It's analogous to the  BAT2EXE utility  in Windows that's used to convert any batch file to an executable. By using shc to generate ELF files, the idea is to protect the malicious shell commands from being inspected and potentially bypass detection by security software as the executables are encoded using the RC4 algorithm . In an attack chain detailed by the South Korean cybersecurity firm, a successful compromise of the SSH serv
Nitrokod Crypto Miner Infected Over 111,000 Users with Copies of Popular Software

Nitrokod Crypto Miner Infected Over 111,000 Users with Copies of Popular Software

Aug 29, 2022
A Turkish-speaking entity called Nitrokod has been attributed to an active cryptocurrency mining campaign that involves impersonating a desktop application for Google Translate to infect over 111,000 victims in 11 countries since 2019.  "The malicious tools can be used by anyone," Maya Horowitz, vice president of research at Check Point, said in a statement shared with The Hacker News. "They can be found by a simple web search, downloaded from a link, and installation is a simple double-click." The list of countries with victims includes the U.K., the U.S., Sri Lanka, Greece, Israel, Germany, Turkey, Cyprus, Australia, Mongolia, and Poland. The  campaign  entails serving malware through free software hosted on popular sites such as Softpedia and Uptodown. But in an interesting tactic, the malware puts off its execution for weeks and separates its malicious activity from the downloaded fake software to avoid detection. The installation of the infected program
Crypto Miners Using Tox P2P Messenger as Command and Control Server

Crypto Miners Using Tox P2P Messenger as Command and Control Server

Aug 24, 2022
Threat actors have begun to use the Tox peer-to-peer instant messaging service as a command-and-control method, marking a shift from its earlier role as a contact method for ransomware negotiations. The findings from Uptycs, which analyzed an Executable and Linkable Format (ELF) artifact (" 72client ") that functions as a bot and can run scripts on the compromised host using the Tox protocol. Tox is a  serverless protocol  for online communications that offers end-to-end encryption (E2EE) protections by making use of the Networking and Cryptography library ( NaCl , pronounced "salt") for encryption and authentication. "The binary found in the wild is a stripped but dynamic executable, making decompilation easier," researchers Siddharth Sharma and Nischay Hedge  said . "The entire binary appears to be written in C, and has only  statically linked  the c-toxcore library." It's worth noting that c-toxcore is a  reference implementation  of
Atlassian Confluence Flaw Being Used to Deploy Ransomware and Crypto Miners

Atlassian Confluence Flaw Being Used to Deploy Ransomware and Crypto Miners

Jun 18, 2022
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
New Malware Loader 'Verblecon' Infects Hacked PCs with Cryptocurrency Miners

New Malware Loader 'Verblecon' Infects Hacked PCs with Cryptocurrency Miners

Mar 29, 2022
An unidentified threat actor has been observed employing a "complex and powerful" malware loader with the ultimate objective of deploying cryptocurrency miners on compromised systems and potentially facilitating the theft of Discord tokens. "The evidence found on victim networks appears to indicate that the goal of the attacker was to install cryptocurrency mining software on victim machines," researchers from the Symantec Threat Hunter Team, part of Broadcom Software,  said  in a report shared with The Hacker News. "This would appear to be a relatively low-reward goal for the attacker given the level of effort that would have been required to develop this sophisticated malware." This advanced piece of malware, dubbed Verblecon, is said to have been first spotted two months ago in January 2022, with the payload incorporating  polymorphic qualities  to evade signature-based detections by security software. In addition, the loader carries out further a
Nation-State Hackers Caught Hiding Espionage Activities Behind Crypto Miners

Nation-State Hackers Caught Hiding Espionage Activities Behind Crypto Miners

Dec 01, 2020
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
Hackers Favorite CoinHive Cryptocurrency Mining Service Shutting Down

Hackers Favorite CoinHive Cryptocurrency Mining Service Shutting Down

Feb 28, 2019
Coinhive, a notorious in-browser cryptocurrency mining service popular among cybercriminals, has announced that it will discontinue its services on March 8, 2019. Regular readers of The Hacker News already know how Coinhive's service helped cyber criminals earn hundreds of thousands of dollars by using computers of millions of people visiting hacked websites . For a brief recap: In recent years, cybercriminals leveraged every possible web vulnerability [in Drupal , WordPress , and others ] to hack thousands of websites and wireless routers , and then modified them to secretly inject Coinhive's JavaScript-based Monero (XMR) cryptocurrency mining script on web-pages to financially benefit themselves. Millions of online users who visited those hacked websites immediately had their computers' processing power hijacked, also known as cryptojacking , to mine cryptocurrency without users' knowledge, potentially generating profits for cybercriminals in the background.
CoinHive URL Shortener Abused to Secretly Mine Cryptocurrency Using Hacked Sites

CoinHive URL Shortener Abused to Secretly Mine Cryptocurrency Using Hacked Sites

Jul 04, 2018
Security researchers have been warning about a new malicious campaign that leverages an alternative scheme to mine cryptocurrencies without directly injecting the infamous CoinHive JavaScript into thousands of hacked websites. Coinhive is a popular browser-based service that offers website owners to embed JavaScript code that utilizes their website visitors' CPUs power in order to mine the Monero cryptocurrency for monetization. However, since its inception, mid-2017, cybercriminals have been abusing the service to illegally make money by injecting their own version of CoinHive JavaScript code to a large number of hacked websites, eventually tricking their millions of visitors into unknowingly mine Monero coins. Since a lot of web application security firms and antivirus companies have now updated their products to detect unauthorized injection of CoinHive JavaScript, cybercriminals have now started abusing a different service from CoinHive to achieve the same. Hackers
Hackers Exploiting Drupal Vulnerability to Inject Cryptocurrency Miners

Hackers Exploiting Drupal Vulnerability to Inject Cryptocurrency Miners

Apr 18, 2018
The Drupal vulnerability (CVE-2018-7600), dubbed Drupalgeddon2 that could allow attackers to completely take over vulnerable websites has now been exploited in the wild to deliver malware backdoors and cryptocurrency miners. Drupalgeddon2, a highly critical remote code execution vulnerability discovered two weeks ago in Drupal content management system software, was recently patched by the company without releasing its technical details. However, just a day after security researchers at Check Point and Dofinity published complete details, a Drupalgeddon2 proof-of-concept (PoC) exploit code was made widely available, and large-scale Internet scanning and exploitation attempts followed. At the time, no incident of targets being hacked was reported, but over the weekend, several security firms noticed that attackers have now started exploiting the vulnerability to install cryptocurrency miner and other malware on vulnerable websites. The SANS Internet Storm Center spotted so
600 Powerful Bitcoin-Mining Computers Worth $2 Million Stolen In Iceland

600 Powerful Bitcoin-Mining Computers Worth $2 Million Stolen In Iceland

Mar 05, 2018
Around 600 powerful devices specifically designed for mining bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have been stolen from Icelandic data centers in what has been dubbed the "Big Bitcoin Heist." To make a profit, so far criminals have hacked cryptocurrency exchanges , spread mining malware , and ransomware —and even kidnapped cryptocurrency investors for ransom and tried to rob a bitcoin exchange , but now the greed has reached another level. The powerful computers are estimated to be worth around $2 million, Associated Press reports , and are used to generate cryptocurrency that at the time of this writing are worth $11,500 each. The theft, which took place between late December and early January, is one of the biggest series of robberies Iceland has ever experienced, according to law enforcement. "This is grand theft on a scale unseen before," said Police Commissioner Olafur Helgi Kjartansson of the southwestern Reykjanes peninsula. There were four differe
Nearly 2000 WordPress Websites Infected with a Keylogger

Nearly 2000 WordPress Websites Infected with a Keylogger

Jan 29, 2018
More than 2,000 WordPress websites have once again been found infected with a piece of crypto-mining malware that not only steals the resources of visitors' computers to mine digital currencies but also logs visitors' every keystroke. Security researchers at Sucuri discovered a malicious campaign that infects WordPress websites with a malicious script that delivers an in-browser cryptocurrency miner from CoinHive and a keylogger. Coinhive is a popular browser-based service that offers website owners to embed a JavaScript to utilise CPUs power of their website visitors in an effort to mine the Monero cryptocurrency. Sucuri researchers said the threat actors behind this new campaign is the same one who infected more than 5,400 Wordpress websites last month since both campaigns used keylogger/cryptocurrency malware called cloudflare[.]solutions. Spotted in April last year, Cloudflare[.]solutions is cryptocurrency mining malware and is not at all related to network
Cryptocurrency Mining Scripts Now Run Even After You Close Your Browser

Cryptocurrency Mining Scripts Now Run Even After You Close Your Browser

Nov 30, 2017
Some websites have found using a simple yet effective technique to keep their cryptocurrency mining javascript secretly running in the background even when you close your web browser. Due to the recent surge in cryptocurrency prices, hackers and even legitimate website administrators are increasingly using JavaScript-based cryptocurrency miners to monetize by levying the CPU power of their visitor's PC to mine Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. After the world's most popular torrent download website, The Pirate Bay , caught secretly  using Coinhive , a browser-based cryptocurrency miner service, on its site last month, thousands of other websites also started using the service as an alternative monetization model to banner ads. However, websites using such crypto-miner services can mine cryptocurrencies as long as you're on their site. Once you close the browser window, they lost access to your processor and associated resources, which eventually stops mining. Un
D-Link MEA Site Caught Running Cryptocurrency Mining Script—Or Was It Hacked?

D-Link MEA Site Caught Running Cryptocurrency Mining Script—Or Was It Hacked?

Nov 01, 2017
Last month the popular torrent website The Pirate Bay caused some uproar by adding a Javascript-based cryptocurrency miner to its site with no opt-out option, utilizing visitors' CPU power to mine Monero coins in an attempt to gain an extra source of revenue. Now D-Link has been caught doing the same, although there's high chance that its website has been hacked. D-Link's official website for Middle East (www.dlinkmea.com) has been found secretly adding a JavaScript-based cryptocurrency miner, according to a blog post published by security firm Seekurity on Tuesday. Seekurity team was made aware of the issue after Facebook user Ahmed Samir reported that visiting on D-Link Middle East website caused his web browser utilizing a "super high CPU" power usage. As shown in the screenshot below, a separate domain was loaded using a hidden iFrame for each page view, which included the cryptocurrency mining script. Five days after Seekurity team reported th
Hacker Hijacks CoinHive's DNS to Mine Cryptocurrency Using Thousands of Websites

Hacker Hijacks CoinHive's DNS to Mine Cryptocurrency Using Thousands of Websites

Oct 25, 2017
When yesterday I was reporting about the sudden outbreak of another global ransomware attack ' Bad Rabbit ,' I thought what could be worse than this? Then late last night I got my answer with a notification that Coinhive has been hacked — a popular browser-based service that offers website owners to embed a JavaScript to utilise their site visitors' CPUs power to mine the Monero cryptocurrency for monetisation. Reportedly an unknown hacker managed to hijack Coinhive's CloudFlare account that allowed him/her to modify its DNS servers and replace Coinhive's official JavaScript code embedded into thousands of websites with a malicious version. https://coin-hive[.]com/lib/coinhive.min.js Hacker Reused Leaked Password from 2014 Data Breach Apparently, hacker reused an old password to access Coinhive's CloudFlare account that was leaked in the Kickstarter data breach in 2014. "Tonight, Oct. 23th at around 22:00 GMT our account for our DNS provi
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