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A New Age of Hacktivism

A New Age of Hacktivism

Feb 22, 2024 Hacktivism / Information Warfare
In the past 2 years, we have observed a significant surge in hacktivism activity due to ongoing wars and geopolitical conflicts in various regions. Since the war against Ukraine began, we have witnessed a notable mobilization of non-state and state-backed actors alike, forming new groups or joining existing hacker collectives.  We understand hacktivism as a form of computer hacking that is done to further the goals of political or social  activism 1 . While  activism  describes a normal, non-disruptive use of the Internet in order to support a specific cause (online petitions, fundraising, coordinating activities),  hacktivism  includes operations that use hacking techniques with the intent to disrupt but not to cause serious harm (e.g., data theft, website defacements, redirects, Denial-of-Service attacks). Cyber operations that inherit a willingness or intent to cause harm to physical property, severe economic damage or loss of life would be referred to as  cyberterrorism, 2, 3  Th
From Megabits to Terabits: Gcore Radar Warns of a New Era of DDoS Attacks

From Megabits to Terabits: Gcore Radar Warns of a New Era of DDoS Attacks

Jan 23, 2024 Cybersecurity / Server Security
As we enter 2024, Gcore has released its latest Gcore Radar report, a twice-annual publication in which the company releases internal analytics to track DDoS attacks. Gcore's broad, internationally distributed network of scrubbing centers allows them to follow attack trends over time. Read on to learn about DDoS attack trends for Q3–Q4 of 2023, and what they mean for developing a robust protection strategy in 2024. Gcore's Key Findings DDoS attack trends for the second half of 2023 reveal alarming developments in the scale and sophistication of cyberthreats. Unprecedented Attack Power The past three years have brought about a >100% annual increase in DDoS peak (registered maximum) attack volume: In 2021, the peak capacity of DDoS attacks was  300 Gbps In 2022, it increased to  650 Gbps In Q1–Q2 of 2023, it increased again to  800 Gbps In Q3–Q4 of 2023, it surged to  1600 Gbps  (1.6 Tbps) Notably, the jump in H2 of 2023 means the cybersecurity industry is measuring DDoS a
SaaS Compliance through the NIST Cybersecurity Framework

SaaS Compliance through the NIST Cybersecurity Framework

Feb 20, 2024Cybersecurity Framework / SaaS Security
The US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) cybersecurity framework is one of the world's most important guidelines for securing networks. It can be applied to any number of applications, including SaaS.  One of the challenges facing those tasked with securing SaaS applications is the different settings found in each application. It makes it difficult to develop a configuration policy that will apply to an HR app that manages employees, a marketing app that manages content, and an R&D app that manages software versions, all while aligning with NIST compliance standards.  However, there are several settings that can be applied to nearly every app in the SaaS stack. In this article, we'll explore some universal configurations, explain why they are important, and guide you in setting them in a way that improves your SaaS apps' security posture.  Start with Admins Role-based access control (RBAC) is a key to NIST adherence and should be applied to every SaaS a
Remcos RAT Spreading Through Adult Games in New Attack Wave

Remcos RAT Spreading Through Adult Games in New Attack Wave

Jan 16, 2024 Botnet / Malware
The remote access trojan (RAT) known as Remcos RAT has been found being propagated via webhards by disguising it as adult-themed games in South Korea. WebHard, short for  web hard drive , is a popular online file storage system used to upload, download, and share files in the country. While webhards have been used in the past to deliver  njRAT ,  UDP RAT, and DDoS botnet malware , the AhnLab Security Emergency Response Center's (ASEC) latest analysis shows that the technique has been adopted to distribute Remcos RAT. In these attacks, users are tricked into opening booby-trapped files by passing them off as adult games, which, when launched, execute malicious Visual Basic scripts in order to run an intermediate binary named "ffmpeg.exe." This results in the retrieval of Remcos RAT from an actor-controlled server. A sophisticated RAT, Remcos (aka Remote Control and Surveillance) facilitates unauthorized remote control and surveillance of compromised hosts, enablin
cyber security

Are You Vulnerable to Third-Party Breaches Through Interconnected SaaS Apps?

websiteWing SecuritySaaS Security / Risk Management
Protect against cascading risks by identifying and mitigating app2app and third-party SaaS vulnerabilities.
New NKAbuse Malware Exploits NKN Blockchain Tech for DDoS Attacks

New NKAbuse Malware Exploits NKN Blockchain Tech for DDoS Attacks

Dec 15, 2023 Blockchain / Internet of Things
A novel multi-platform threat called  NKAbuse  has been discovered using a decentralized, peer-to-peer network connectivity protocol known as  NKN  (short for New Kind of Network) as a communications channel. "The malware utilizes NKN technology for data exchange between peers, functioning as a potent implant, and equipped with both flooder and backdoor capabilities," Russian cybersecurity company Kaspersky  said  in a Thursday report. NKN, which has over 62,000 nodes, is  described  as a "software overlay network built on top of today's Internet that enables users to share unused bandwidth and earn token rewards." It incorporates a blockchain layer on top of the existing TCP/IP stack. While threat actors are known to take advantage of emerging communication protocols for command-and-control (C2) purposes and evade detection, NKAbuse leverages blockchain technology to conduct distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks and function as an implant inside com
Record-Breaking 100 Million RPS DDoS Attack Exploits HTTP/2 Rapid Reset Flaw

Record-Breaking 100 Million RPS DDoS Attack Exploits HTTP/2 Rapid Reset Flaw

Oct 26, 2023 Network Security / Cyber Attack
Cloudflare on Thursday said it mitigated thousands of hyper-volumetric HTTP distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks that exploited a recently disclosed flaw called  HTTP/2 Rapid Reset , 89 of which exceeded 100 million requests per second (RPS). "The campaign contributed to an overall increase of 65% in HTTP DDoS attack traffic in Q3 compared to the previous quarter ," the web infrastructure and security company said in a report shared with The Hacker News. "Similarly,  L3/4 DDoS attacks  also increased by 14%." The total number of HTTP DDoS attack requests in the quarter surged to 8.9 trillion, up from 5.4 trillion in Q2 2023 and 4.7 trillion in Q1 2023. The number of attack requests in Q4 2022 stood at 6.5 trillion. HTTP/2 Rapid Reset (CVE-2023-44487) came to light earlier this month following an industry-wide coordinated disclosure that delved into DDoS attacks orchestrated by an unknown actor by leveraging the flaw to target various providers such as
ShellBot Uses Hex IPs to Evade Detection in Attacks on Linux SSH Servers

ShellBot Uses Hex IPs to Evade Detection in Attacks on Linux SSH Servers

Oct 12, 2023
The threat actors behind ShellBot are leveraging IP addresses transformed into their hexadecimal notation to infiltrate poorly managed Linux SSH servers and deploy the DDoS malware. "The overall flow remains the same, but the download URL used by the threat actor to install ShellBot has changed from a regular IP address to a hexadecimal value," the AhnLab Security Emergency response Center (ASEC) said in a new report published today. ShellBot, also known by the name PerlBot, is known to breach servers that have weak SSH credentials by means of a dictionary attack , with the malware used as a conduit to stage DDoS attacks and deliver cryptocurrency miners . Developed in Perl, the malware uses the IRC protocol to communicate with a command-and-control (C2) server. The latest set of observed attacks involving ShellBot has been found to install the malware using hexadecimal IP addresses – hxxp://0x2763da4e/ which corresponds to 39.99.218[.]78 – in what's seen as an a
KmsdBot Malware Gets an Upgrade: Now Targets IoT Devices with Enhanced Capabilities

KmsdBot Malware Gets an Upgrade: Now Targets IoT Devices with Enhanced Capabilities

Aug 28, 2023 Internet of Things / Malware
An updated version of a botnet malware called  KmsdBot  is now targeting Internet of Things (IoT) devices, simultaneously branching out its capabilities and the attack surface. "The binary now includes support for  Telnet scanning  and support for more CPU architectures," Akamai security researcher Larry W. Cashdollar  said  in an analysis published this month. The latest iteration, observed since July 16, 2023, comes months after it emerged that the botnet is being offered as a  DDoS-for-hire service  to other threat actors. The fact that it's being actively maintained indicates its effectiveness in real-world attacks. KmsdBot was  first documented  by the web infrastructure and security company in November 2022. It's mainly employed to target private gaming servers and cloud hosting providers, although it has since set its eyes on some Romanian government and Spanish educational sites. The malware is designed to scan random IP addresses for open SSH ports and
U.S. Authorities Seize 13 Domains Offering Criminal DDoS-for-Hire Services

U.S. Authorities Seize 13 Domains Offering Criminal DDoS-for-Hire Services

May 09, 2023 Cyber Crime / DDoS Attack
U.S. authorities have announced the seizure of 13 internet domains that offered DDoS-for-hire services to other criminal actors. The takedown is part of an ongoing international initiative dubbed  Operation PowerOFF  that's aimed at dismantling criminal DDoS-for-hire infrastructures worldwide. The development comes almost five months after a "sweep" in December 2022  dismantled 48 similar services  for abetting paying users to launch distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks against targets of interest. This includes school districts, universities, financial institutions, and government websites, according to the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ). Ten of the 13 illicit domains seized are "reincarnations" of booter or stresser services that were previously shuttered towards the end of last year. "In recent years, booter services have continued to proliferate, as they offer a low barrier to entry for users looking to engage in cybercriminal activity,
U.K. National Crime Agency Sets Up Fake DDoS-For-Hire Sites to Catch Cybercriminals

U.K. National Crime Agency Sets Up Fake DDoS-For-Hire Sites to Catch Cybercriminals

Mar 25, 2023 Cyber Crime / DDoS Attack
In what's a case of setting a thief to catch a thief, the U.K. National Crime Agency (NCA) revealed that it has created a network of fake DDoS-for-hire websites to infiltrate the online criminal underground. "All of the NCA-run sites, which have so far been accessed by around several thousand people, have been created to look like they offer the tools and services that enable cyber criminals to execute these attacks," the law enforcement agency  said . "However, after users register, rather than being given access to cyber crime tools, their data is collated by investigators." The effort is part of an ongoing international joint effort called Operation PowerOFF in collaboration with authorities from the U.S., the Netherlands, Germany, Poland, and Europol aimed at dismantling criminal DDoS-for-hire infrastructures worldwide. DDoS-for-hire (aka "Booter" or "Stresser") services rent out access to a network of infected devices to other crim
New ShellBot DDoS Malware Variants Targeting Poorly Managed Linux Servers

New ShellBot DDoS Malware Variants Targeting Poorly Managed Linux Servers

Mar 21, 2023 Linux / Server Security
Poorly managed Linux SSH servers are being targeted as part of a new campaign that deploys different variants of a malware called ShellBot. "ShellBot, also known as  PerlBot , is a DDoS Bot malware developed in Perl and characteristically uses IRC protocol to communicate with the C&C server," AhnLab Security Emergency response Center (ASEC)  said  in a report. ShellBot is installed on servers that have weak credentials, but only after threat actors make use of scanner malware to identify systems that have SSH port 22 open. A list of known SSH credentials is used to initiate a dictionary attack to breach the server and deploy the payload, after which it leverages the Internet Relay Chat ( IRC ) protocol to communicate with a remote server. This encompasses the ability to receive commands that allows ShellBot to carry out DDoS attacks and exfiltrate harvested information. ASEC said it identified three different ShellBot versions – LiGhT's Modded perlbot v2, DDoS
Is Your EV Charging Station Safe? New Security Vulnerabilities Uncovered

Is Your EV Charging Station Safe? New Security Vulnerabilities Uncovered

Feb 03, 2023 Automotive Security / Vulnerability
Two new security weaknesses discovered in several electric vehicle (EV) charging systems could be exploited to remotely shut down charging stations and even expose them to data and energy theft. The findings, which come from Israel-based SaiFlow, once again demonstrate the  potential risks  facing the EV charging infrastructure. The issues have been identified in version 1.6J of the Open Charge Point Protocol ( OCPP ) standard that uses WebSockets for communication between EV charging stations and the Charging Station Management System (CSMS) providers. The current version of OCPP is 2.0.1. "The OCPP standard doesn't define how a CSMS should accept new connections from a charge point when there is already an active connection," SaiFlow researchers Lionel Richard Saposnik and Doron Porat  said . "The lack of a clear guideline for multiple active connections can be exploited by attackers to disrupt and hijack the connection between the charge point and the CSMS.&q
Zerobot Botnet Emerges as a Growing Threat with New Exploits and Capabilities

Zerobot Botnet Emerges as a Growing Threat with New Exploits and Capabilities

Dec 22, 2022 Internet of Things / Patch Management
The  Zerobot  DDoS botnet has received substantial updates that expand on its ability to target more internet-connected devices and scale its network. Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC) is tracking the ongoing threat under the moniker DEV-1061, its designation for unknown, emerging, or developing activity clusters. Zerobot,  first documented  by Fortinet FortiGuard Labs earlier this month, is a Go-based malware that propagates through vulnerabilities in web applications and IoT devices like firewalls, routers, and cameras. "The most recent distribution of Zerobot includes additional capabilities, such as exploiting vulnerabilities in Apache and Apache Spark ( CVE-2021-42013  and  CVE-2022-33891  respectively), and new DDoS attack capabilities," Microsoft researchers  said . Also called ZeroStresser by its operators, the malware is offered as a DDoS-for-hire service to other criminal actors, with the botnet advertised for sale on various social media networks.
FBI Charges 6, Seizes 48 Domains Linked to DDoS-for-Hire Service Platforms

FBI Charges 6, Seizes 48 Domains Linked to DDoS-for-Hire Service Platforms

Dec 15, 2022 Cyber Attack / DDoS-for-Hire
The U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) on Wednesday announced the seizure of 48 domains that offered services to conduct distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks on behalf of other threat actors, effectively lowering the barrier to entry for malicious activity. It also charged six suspects – Jeremiah Sam Evans Miller (23), Angel Manuel Colon Jr. (37), Shamar Shattock (19), Cory Anthony Palmer (22), John M. Dobbs (32), and Joshua Laing (32) – for their alleged ownership in the operation. The websites "allowed paying users to launch powerful distributed denial-of-service, or DDoS, attacks that flood targeted computers with information and prevent them from being able to access the internet," the DoJ said in a press statement. The six defendants have been charged with running various booter (or stresser) services, including RoyalStresser[.]com, SecurityTeam[.]io, Astrostress[.]com, Booter[.]sx, IPStresser[.]com, and TrueSecurityServices[.]io. They have also been accused
Mantis Botnet Behind the Largest HTTPS DDoS Attack Targeting Cloudflare Customers

Mantis Botnet Behind the Largest HTTPS DDoS Attack Targeting Cloudflare Customers

Jul 15, 2022
The botnet behind the largest HTTPS distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack in June 2022 has been linked to a spate of attacks aimed at nearly 1,000 Cloudflare customers. Calling the powerful botnet  Mantis , the web performance and security company attributed it to more than 3,000 HTTP DDoS attacks against its users. The most attacked industry verticals include internet and telecom, media, gaming, finance, business, and shopping, of which over 20% of the attacks targeted U.S.-based companies, followed by Russia, Turkey, France, Poland, Ukraine, the U.K., Germany, the Netherlands, and Canada. Last month, the company said it  mitigated  a record-breaking DDoS attack aimed at an unnamed customer website using its Free plan that peaked at 26 million requests per second (RPS), with each node generating approximately 5,200 RPS. The tsunami of junk traffic lasted less than 30 seconds and generated more than 212 million HTTPS requests from more than 1,500 networks in 121 countries,
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