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Malware Variants: More Sophisticated, Prevalent and Evolving in 2021

Malware Variants: More Sophisticated, Prevalent and Evolving in 2021

April 15, 2021The Hacker News
A malicious program intended to cause havoc with IT systems—malware—is becoming more and more sophisticated every year. The year 2021 is no exception, as recent trends indicate that several  new variants of malware  are making their way into the world of cybersecurity. While smarter security solutions are popping up, modern malware still eludes and challenges cybersecurity experts.  The evolution of malware has infected everything from personal computers to industrial units since the 70s. Cybersecurity firm  FireEye's network was attacked  in 2020 by hackers with the most sophisticated form of hacking i.e., supply chain. This hacking team demonstrated world-class capabilities to disregard security tools and forensic examination, proving that anybody can be hacked. Also, the year 2021 is already witnessing a bump in  COVID-19 vaccine-related phishing attacks .  Let's take a look at the trends that forecast an increase in malware attacks: COVID-19 and Work-from-Home (WFH) 
YIKES! Hackers flood the web with 100,000 pages offering malicious PDFs

YIKES! Hackers flood the web with 100,000 pages offering malicious PDFs

April 15, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybercriminals are resorting to search engine poisoning techniques to lure business professionals into seemingly legitimate Google sites that install a Remote Access Trojan (RAT) capable of carrying out a wide range of attacks. The attack works by leveraging searches for business forms such as invoices, templates, questionnaires, and receipts as a stepping stone toward infiltrating the systems. Users attempting to download the alleged document templates are  redirected , without their knowledge, to a malicious website that hosts the malware. "Once the RAT is on the victim's computer and activated, the threat actors can send commands and upload additional malware to the infected system, such as ransomware, a credential stealer, a banking trojan, or simply use the RAT as a foothold into the victim's network," researchers from eSentire  said  in a write-up published on Tuesday. The cybersecurity firm said it discovered over 100,000 unique web pages that contain pop
Simplify, then Add Lightness – Consolidating the Technology to Better Defend Ourselves

Simplify, then Add Lightness – Consolidating the Technology to Better Defend Ourselves

April 14, 2021The Hacker News
One of the biggest consequences of the rapidly evolving cybersecurity threat landscape is that defenses must constantly build bigger systems to defend themselves.  This leads to both more complex systems and often less communication between them. More importantly, it can lead companies to invest in disparate "best in class" components instead of finding the best fit for their needs. The constant arms race means that companies often get bigger, more powerful tools that can't handle the nuanced threats they face. For instance, in a car race, it's not often the fastest, most powerful car that wins, but the one that is more balanced, lighter, and more able to turn and react when needed. In a new live webinar, Cynet Chief Strategist Chris Roberts breaks down why the philosophy of "simpler is better" is just what cybersecurity needs ( register here ). The webinar will focus on how quickly cybersecurity stacks are growing and how this is not always a good thing. Companies are too focused
New NAME:WRECK Vulnerabilities Impact Nearly 100 Million IoT Devices

New NAME:WRECK Vulnerabilities Impact Nearly 100 Million IoT Devices

April 13, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Security researchers have uncovered nine vulnerabilities affecting four TCP/IP stacks impacting more than 100 million consumer and enterprise devices that could be exploited by an attacker to take control of a vulnerable system. Dubbed " NAME:WRECK " by Forescout and JSOF, the flaws are the latest in series of studies undertaken as part of an initiative called Project Memoria to study the security of widely-used TCP/IP stacks that are incorporated by various vendors in their firmware to offer internet and network connectivity features. "These vulnerabilities relate to Domain Name System (DNS) implementations, causing either Denial of Service (DoS) or Remote Code Execution (RCE), allowing attackers to take target devices offline or to take control over them," the researchers said. The name comes from the fact that parsing of domain names can break (i.e., "wreck") DNS implementations in TCP/IP stacks, adding to a recent uptick in vulnerabilities such as 
RCE Exploit Released for Unpatched Chrome, Opera, and Brave Browsers

RCE Exploit Released for Unpatched Chrome, Opera, and Brave Browsers

April 12, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
An Indian security researcher has publicly published a proof-of-concept (PoC) exploit code for a newly discovered flaw impacting Google Chrome and other Chromium-based browsers like Microsoft Edge, Opera, and Brave. Released by Rajvardhan Agarwal, the working  exploit  concerns a remote code execution vulnerability in the V8 JavaScript rendering engine that powers the web browsers. It is believed to be the same flaw demonstrated by Dataflow Security's Bruno Keith and Niklas Baumstark at  Pwn2Own 2021 hacking contest  last week. Keith and Baumstark were awarded $100,000 for leveraging the vulnerability to run malicious code inside Chrome and Edge. According to the screenshot shared by Agarwal, the PoC HTML file, and its associated JavaScript file, can be loaded in a Chromium-based browser to exploit the security flaw and launch the Windows calculator (calc.exe) app. But it's worth noting that the exploit needs to be chained with another flaw that can allow it to escape Chro
What Does It Take To Be a Cybersecurity Researcher?

What Does It Take To Be a Cybersecurity Researcher?

April 12, 2021The Hacker News
Behind the strategies and solutions needed to counter today's cyber threats are—dedicated cybersecurity researchers. They spend their lives dissecting code and analyzing incident reports to discover how to stop the bad guys.  But what drives these specialists? To understand the motivations for why these cybersecurity pros do what they do, we decided to talk with cybersecurity analysts from around the world. To get viewpoints from across Europe, Asia, and the Americas, we recently spoke with a team of researchers from Acronis' global network of Cyber Protection Operations Centers (CPOCs):  Candid Wüest , VP of Cyber Protection Research who is based in Switzerland;  Alexander Ivanyuk , Senior Director, Product, and Technology Positioning, who is based in Singapore; and two Cybersecurity Analysts,  Topher Tebow  and  Blake Collins , who are both based in the U.S. The conversation yielded some interesting insights into their views of the world, how they approach cyber threat an
Windows, Ubuntu, Zoom, Safari, MS Exchange Hacked at Pwn2Own 2021

Windows, Ubuntu, Zoom, Safari, MS Exchange Hacked at Pwn2Own 2021

April 12, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
The 2021 spring edition of  Pwn2Own  hacking contest concluded last week on April 8 with a three-way tie between Team Devcore, OV, and Computest researchers Daan Keuper and Thijs Alkemade. A total of $1.2 million was awarded for 16 high-profile exploits over the course of the three-day virtual event organized by the Zero Day Initiative (ZDI). Targets with successful attempts included Zoom, Apple Safari, Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft Teams, Parallels Desktop, Windows 10, and Ubuntu Desktop operating systems. Some of the major highlights are as follows — Using an authentication bypass and a local privilege escalation to completely take over a Microsoft Exchange server, for which the Devcore team netted $200,000 Chaining a pair of bugs to achieve code execution in Microsoft Teams, earning researcher OV $200,000 A zero-click exploit targeting Zoom that employed a three-bug chain to exploit the messenger app and gain code execution on the target system. ($200,000) The exploitation
[WHITEPAPER] How to Achieve CMMC Security Compliance for Your Business

[WHITEPAPER] How to Achieve CMMC Security Compliance for Your Business

April 09, 2021The Hacker News
For organizations that deal with the defense infrastructure – cybersecurity is more than just a buzzword. Recently the US Department of Defense (DoD) created a new certification process – the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certificate (CMMC) – to ensure that all its vendors and contractors follow established best cybersecurity practices. For organizations that work along the DoD supply chain, this means adhering to a strict regulatory framework, which can be quite complex. For one, must ensure that cybersecurity processes and practices are aligned with the type and sensitivity of the information that needs to be protected. Even though the model is tiered (from "basic cybersecurity hygiene" to "advanced"), organizations will expend a significant effort to ensure they align with the compliance level appropriate for their contracts. This is why one XDR provider has created a new guide to demonstrate how it helps organizations achieve CMMC compliance ( download the whitepaper here ). T
NIST and HIPAA: Is There a Password Connection?

NIST and HIPAA: Is There a Password Connection?

April 08, 2021The Hacker News
When dealing with user data, it's essential that we design our password policies around compliance. These policies are defined both internally and externally. While companies uphold their own password standards, outside forces like HIPAA and NIST have a heavy influence. Impacts are defined by industry and one's unique infrastructure. How do IT departments maintain compliance with NIST and HIPAA? We'll discuss each compliance measure and its importance in this article. What is NIST compliance? Defined by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, NIST compliance aims to harden federal systems against cyber-attacks. While the agency is non-regulatory, it  is  part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, which has plenty of influence over government agencies and their contractors. For example, NIST guidelines help agencies  satisfy the requirements of the Federal Information Security Management Act  (FISMA). NIST is instrumental in creating Federal Information Proce
WhatsApp-based wormable Android malware spotted on the Google Play Store

WhatsApp-based wormable Android malware spotted on the Google Play Store

April 07, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers have discovered yet another piece of wormable Android malware—but this time downloadable directly from the official Google Play Store—that's capable of propagating via WhatsApp messages. Disguised as a rogue Netflix app under the name of "FlixOnline," the malware comes with features that allow it to automatically reply to a victim's incoming WhatsApp messages with a payload received from a command-and-control (C&C) server.  "The application is actually designed to monitor the user's WhatsApp notifications, and to send automatic replies to the user's incoming messages using content that it receives from a remote C&C server," Check Point researchers said in an analysis published today. Besides masquerading as a Netflix app, the malicious "FlixOnline" app also requests intrusive permissions that allow it to create fake Login screens for other apps, with the goal of stealing credentials and gain access to
11 Useful Security Tips for Securing Your AWS Environment

11 Useful Security Tips for Securing Your AWS Environment

April 07, 2021The Hacker News
Want to take advantage of excellent cloud services? Amazon Web Services may be the perfect solution, but don't forget about AWS security. Whether you want to use AWS for a few things or everything, you need to protect access to it. Then you can make sure your business can run smoothly. Read on to learn some important AWS security tips. Use Multi-Factor authentication When setting up your AWS security settings or adding new users, you should implement multi-factor authentication (MFA). MFA relies on more than one login factor to grant you access to your account. For example, when you log in to your account, the program might send a code to your mobile phone. Then you must verify that you have that phone and enter the code to access your account. MFA is an excellent way to protect your data if someone figures out your username and password. This way, you can still have a layer of protection against the hacker. Create strong passwords Even with MFA, you should use strong, uni
Critical Auth Bypass Bug Found in VMware Data Center Security Product

Critical Auth Bypass Bug Found in VMware Data Center Security Product

April 07, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A critical vulnerability in the VMware Carbon Black Cloud Workload appliance could be exploited to bypass authentication and take control of vulnerable systems. Tracked as CVE-2021-21982, the flaw is rated 9.1 out of a maximum of 10 in the CVSS scoring system and affects all versions of the product prior to 1.0.1.  Carbon Black Cloud Workload is a data center security product from VMware that aims to protect critical servers and workloads hosted on vSphere, the company's cloud-computing virtualization platform. "A URL on the administrative interface of the VMware Carbon Black Cloud Workload appliance can be manipulated to bypass authentication," VMware  said  in its advisory, thereby allowing an adversary with network access to the interface to gain access to the administration API of the appliance. Armed with the access, a malicious actor can then view and alter  administrative configuration settings , the company added. In addition to releasing a fix for CVE-2021
Pre-Installed Malware Dropper Found On German Gigaset Android Phones

Pre-Installed Malware Dropper Found On German Gigaset Android Phones

April 07, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
In what appears to be a fresh twist in Android malware, users of Gigaset mobile devices are encountering unwanted apps that are being downloaded and installed through a pre-installed system update app. "The culprit installing these malware apps is the Update app, package name  com.redstone.ota.ui , which is a pre-installed system app," Malwarebytes researcher Nathan Collier  said . "This app is not only the mobile device's system updater, but also an auto installer known as Android/PUP.Riskware.Autoins.Redstone." The development was  first reported  by German author and blogger Günter Born last week. While the issue seems to be mainly affecting Gigaset phones, devices from a handful of other manufacturers appear to be impacted as well. The full list of devices that come with the pre-installed auto-installer includes Gigaset GS270, Gigaset GS160, Siemens GS270, Siemens GS160, Alps P40pro, and Alps S20pro+. According to Malwarebytes, the Update app installs
Experts uncover a new Banking Trojan targeting Latin American users

Experts uncover a new Banking Trojan targeting Latin American users

April 06, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Researchers on Tuesday revealed details of a new banking trojan targeting corporate users in Brazil at least since 2019 across various sectors such as engineering, healthcare, retail, manufacturing, finance, transportation, and government. Dubbed " Janeleiro " by Slovak cybersecurity firm ESET, the malware aims to disguise its true intent via lookalike pop-up windows that are designed to resemble the websites of some of the biggest banks in the country, including Itaú Unibanco, Santander, Banco do Brasil, Caixa Econômica Federal, and Banco Bradesco. "These pop-ups contain fake forms, aiming to trick the malware's victims into entering their banking credentials and personal information that the malware captures and exfiltrates to its [command-and-control] servers," ESET researchers Facundo Muñoz and Matías Porolli said in a write-up. This modus operandi is not new to banking trojans. In August 2020, ESET uncovered a Latin American (LATAM) banking trojan call
MITRE Madness: A Guide to Weathering the Upcoming Vendor Positioning Storm

MITRE Madness: A Guide to Weathering the Upcoming Vendor Positioning Storm

April 06, 2021The Hacker News
April is usually a whirlwind month for the cybersecurity industry as it coincides with the release of the highly regarded and influential MITRE ATT&CK test results. The ATT&CK test measures cybersecurity platforms' abilities to detect and react to emulated, multistep attacks that can be used as a barometer of platform effectiveness.  This means that every cybersecurity vendor will be tripping over themselves to push out blog posts, webinars, press releases, and more touting how great their services are and how the results validate their products. The result is a storm of spin and PR that is hard to navigate. An upcoming webinar offered by Cynet ( register here ) aims to help industry participants differentiate the spin from the real information when it comes to MITRE ATT&CK results. The Webinar will be led by renowned cybersecurity researcher and Chief Security Strategist for Cynet, Chris Roberts, and Director of Product Marketing for Cynet, George Tubin. The conver
Hackers Targeting professionals With 'more_eggs' Malware via LinkedIn Job Offers

Hackers Targeting professionals With 'more_eggs' Malware via LinkedIn Job Offers

April 06, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A new spear-phishing campaign is targeting professionals on LinkedIn with weaponized job offers in an attempt to infect targets with a sophisticated backdoor trojan called "more_eggs." To increase the odds of success, the phishing lures take advantage of malicious ZIP archive files that have the same name as that of the victims' job titles taken from their LinkedIn profiles. "For example, if the LinkedIn member's job is listed as Senior Account Executive—International Freight the malicious zip file would be titled Senior Account Executive—International Freight position (note the 'position' added to the end)," cybersecurity firm eSentire's Threat Response Unit (TRU)  said  in an analysis. "Upon opening the fake job offer, the victim unwittingly initiates the stealthy installation of the fileless backdoor, more_eggs." Campaigns delivering more_eggs using the  same modus operandi  have been spotted at least since 2018, with the backdo
How the Work-From-Home Shift Impacts SaaS Security

How the Work-From-Home Shift Impacts SaaS Security

April 05, 2021The Hacker News
The data is in. According to IBM Security's  2020 Cost of a Data Breach Report , there is a 50% increase in cloud usage for enterprises across all industries. The number of threats targeting cloud services, predominantly collaboration services like Office 365, has  increased 630% . Moreover, 75% of respondents report that discovery and recovery time from data breaches has significantly increased due to remote work during the pandemic. Although organizations can save over $1 million if they discover a breach in the first 30 days, the average reported response time was a whopping 280 days.  In the remote-work world, SaaS apps have become an enticing vector-of-choice for bad actors. Just think of the typical employee, working off-site, untrained in security measures, and how their access or privileges increase the risk of sensitive data being stolen, exposed, or compromised. However, it doesn't have to be that way — a company's SaaS security posture can be strengthened, an
How Cyrebro Can Unify Multiple Cybersecurity Defenses to Optimize Protection

How Cyrebro Can Unify Multiple Cybersecurity Defenses to Optimize Protection

April 02, 2021The Hacker News
Many enterprises rely on more than one security tool to protect their technology assets, devices, and networks. This is particularly true for organizations that use hybrid systems or a combination of cloud and local applications. Likewise, companies whose networks include a multitude of smartphones and IoT devices are likely to deploy multiple security solutions suitable for different scenarios. Employing several security solutions tends to be inevitable for many, especially those that have outgrown their previous network setups. Companies that expand to new branches and even overseas operations have to make use of additional security measures and tools. This use of multiple tools or software often leads to critical issues, though. The management of the many cybersecurity solutions can become too complicated and difficult to handle, especially for organizations with little experience in addressing cyber threats, let alone actual attacks. This can result in confusion and the inabilit
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