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Authorities Take Down World's Largest Illegal Dark Web Marketplace

Authorities Take Down World's Largest Illegal Dark Web Marketplace
January 12, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Europol on Tuesday said it shut down DarkMarket, the world's largest online marketplace for illicit goods, as part of an  international operation  involving Germany, Australia, Denmark, Moldova, Ukraine, the U.K.'s National Crime Agency (NCA), and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). At the time of closure, DarkMarket is believed to have had 500,000 users and more than 2,400 vendors, with over 320,000 transactions resulting in the transfer of more than 4,650 bitcoin and 12,800 monero — a sum total of €140 million ($170 million). The illegal internet market specialized in the sales of drugs, counterfeit money, stolen or forged credit card information, anonymous SIM cards, and off-the-shelf malware. In addition, the months-long intelligence operation also resulted in the arrest of a 34-year-old Australian national near the German-Danish border over the weekend, who is alleged to be the mastermind behind DarkMarket. According to  The Guardian , DarkMarket came to

Experts Sound Alarm On New Android Malware Sold On Hacking Forums

Experts Sound Alarm On New Android Malware Sold On Hacking Forums
January 12, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers have exposed the operations of an Android malware vendor who teamed up with a second threat actor to market and sell a remote access Trojan (RAT) capable of device takeover and exfiltration of photos, locations, contacts, and messages from popular apps such as Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Skype, Telegram, Kik, Line, and Google Messages. The vendor, who goes by the name of " Triangulum " in a number of darknet forums, is alleged to be a 25-year-old man of Indian origin, with the individual opening up shop to sell the malware three years ago on June 10, 2017, according to an analysis published by Check Point Research today. "The product was a mobile RAT, targeting Android devices and capable of exfiltration of sensitive data from a C&C server, destroying local data – even deleting the entire OS, at times," the researchers said. An Active Underground Market for Mobile Malware Piecing together Triangulum's trail of activities, t

ALERT: North Korean hackers targeting South Korea with RokRat Trojan

ALERT: North Korean hackers targeting South Korea with RokRat Trojan
January 08, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A North Korean hacking group has been found deploying the RokRat Trojan in a new spear-phishing campaign targeting the South Korean government. Attributing the attack to  APT37  (aka Starcruft, Ricochet Chollima, or Reaper), Malwarebytes said it identified a malicious document last December that, when opened, executes a macro in memory to install the aforementioned remote access tool (RAT). "The file contains an embedded macro that uses a VBA self decoding technique to decode itself within the memory spaces of Microsoft Office without writing to the disk. It then embeds a variant of the RokRat into Notepad," the researchers  noted  in a Wednesday analysis. Believed to be active at least since 2012, the  Reaper APT  is known for its focus on public and private entities primarily in South Korea, such as chemicals, electronics, manufacturing, aerospace, automotive, and healthcare entities. Since then, their victimology has expanded beyond the Korean peninsula to include Ja

SolarWinds Hackers Also Accessed U.S. Justice Department's Email Server

SolarWinds Hackers Also Accessed U.S. Justice Department's Email Server
January 06, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
The U.S. Department of Justice on Wednesday became the latest government agency in the country to admit its internal network was compromised as part of the SolarWinds supply chain attack. "On December 24, 2020, the Department of Justice's Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) learned of previously unknown malicious activity linked to the global SolarWinds incident that has affected multiple federal agencies and technology contractors, among others," DoJ spokesperson Marc Raimondi said in a short statement. "This activity involved access to the Department's Microsoft Office 365 email environment." Calling it a "major incident," the DoJ said the threat actors who spied on government networks through SolarWinds software potentially accessed about 3% of the Justice Department's email accounts, but added there's no indication they accessed classified systems. The disclosure comes a day after the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FB

Ticketmaster To Pay $10 Million Fine For Hacking A Rival Company

Ticketmaster To Pay $10 Million Fine For Hacking A Rival Company
January 02, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
Ticketmaster has agreed to pay a $10 million fine after being charged with illegally accessing computer systems of a competitor repeatedly between 2013 and 2015 in an attempt to "cut [the company] off at the knees." A subsidiary of Live Nation, the California-based ticket sales and distribution company used the stolen information to gain an advantage over CrowdSurge — which merged with Songkick in 2015 and later acquired by Warner Music Group (WMG) in 2017 — by hiring a former employee to break into its tools and gain insight into the firm's operations. "Ticketmaster employees repeatedly – and illegally – accessed a competitor's computers without authorization using stolen passwords to unlawfully collect business intelligence,"  said  Acting U.S. Attorney Seth DuCharme. "Further, Ticketmaster's employees brazenly held a division-wide 'summit' at which the stolen passwords were used to access the victim company's computers, as if th

Police Arrest 21 WeLeakInfo Customers Who Bought Breached Personal Data

Police Arrest 21 WeLeakInfo Customers Who Bought Breached Personal Data
December 25, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
21 people have been arrested across the UK as part of a nationwide cyber crackdown targeting customers of WeLeakInfo[.]com, a now-defunct online service that had been previously selling access to data hacked from other websites. The suspects used stolen personal credentials to commit further cyber and fraud offences, the UK National Crime Agency (NCA)  said . Of the 21 arrested — all men aged between 18 and 38 — nine have been detained on suspicion of Computer Misuse Act offences, nine for Fraud offences, and three are under investigation for both. The NCA also seized over £41,000 in bitcoin from the arrested individuals. Earlier this  January , the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the NCA, the Netherlands National Police Corps, the German Bundeskriminalamt, and the Police Service of Northern Ireland jointly  seized the domain  of WeLeakInfo.com. Launched in 2017, the service provided its users a search engine to access the personal information illegally obtained from ov

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

Governance Considerations for Democratizing Your Organization's Data in 2021

Governance Considerations for Democratizing Your Organization's Data in 2021
December 11, 2020The Hacker News
With the continuing rise of IoT devices, mobile networks, and digital channels, companies face a lot of pressure to generate meaningful and actionable insights from the wealth of data they capture. Gartner Research lists data democratization as  one of the top  strategic technology trends to watch out for.  While empowering non-technical users to run ad-hoc reports gives enterprises the ability to get closer to business conditions, it also introduces problems of data governance and privacy compliance. All reports are only as good as the data they're based on, and non-technical users might not be aware of the need for data integrity and security. Even the "experts" at cybersecurity firms have been known to leak files  at alarming rates . Organizations need to implement strong data governance strategies to ensure their data is accurate, reliable and secure, while continuing to provide their employees with the resources they need to realize the full benefits of it. Here&

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

Cybersecurity Firm FireEye Got Hacked; Red-Team Pentest Tools Stolen

Cybersecurity Firm FireEye Got Hacked; Red-Team Pentest Tools Stolen
December 09, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
FireEye, one of the largest cybersecurity firms in the world, said on Tuesday it became a victim of a  state-sponsored attack  by a "highly sophisticated threat actor" that stole its arsenal of Red Team penetration testing tools it uses to test the defenses of its customers. The company said it's actively investigating the breach in coordination with the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and other key partners, including Microsoft. It did not identify a specific culprit who might be behind the breach or disclose when the hack exactly took place. However,  The New York Times  and  The Washington Post  reported that the FBI has turned over the investigation to its Russian specialists and that the attack is likely the work of  APT29  (or Cozy Bear) — state-sponsored hackers affiliated with Russia's SVR Foreign Intelligence Service — citing unnamed sources. As of writing, the hacking tools have not been exploited in the wild, nor do they contain zero-day expl

Microsoft Releases Windows Update (Dec 2020) to Fix 58 Security Flaws

Microsoft Releases Windows Update (Dec 2020) to Fix 58 Security Flaws
December 08, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft on Tuesday released fixes for 58 newly discovered security flaws spanning as many as 11 products and services as part of its final  Patch Tuesday of 2020 , effectively bringing their CVE total to 1,250 for the year. Of these 58 patches, nine are rated as Critical, 46 are rated as Important, and three are rated Moderate in severity. The December security release addresses issues in Microsoft Windows, Edge browser, ChakraCore, Microsoft Office, Exchange Server, Azure DevOps, Microsoft Dynamics, Visual Studio, Azure SDK, and Azure Sphere. Fortunately, none of these flaws this month have been reported as publicly known or being actively exploited in the wild. The fixes for December concern a number of remote code execution (RCE) flaws in Microsoft Exchange (CVE-2020-17132), SharePoint (CVE-2020-17118 and CVE-2020-17121), Excel (CVE-2020-17123), and Hyper-V virtualization software (CVE-2020-17095), as well as a patch for a security feature bypass in Kerberos (CVE-2020-16996)

Iranian RANA Android Malware Also Spies On Instant Messengers

Iranian RANA Android Malware Also Spies On Instant Messengers
December 07, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A team of researchers today unveiled previously undisclosed capabilities of an Android spyware implant—developed by a sanctioned Iranian threat actor—that could let attackers spy on private chats from popular instant messaging apps, force Wi-Fi connections, and auto-answer calls from specific numbers for purposes of eavesdropping on conversations. In  September , the US Department of the Treasury imposed sanctions on APT39 (aka Chafer, ITG07, or Remix Kitten) — an Iranian threat actor backed by the country's Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) — for carrying out malware campaigns targeting Iranian dissidents, journalists, and international companies in the telecom and travel sectors. Coinciding with the sanctions, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) released a public threat analysis  report  describing several tools used by Rana Intelligence Computing Company, which operated as a front for the malicious cyber activities conducted by the APT39 group. Formally lin

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 Targeting Companies Involved in Covid-19 Vaccine Distribution

Hackers Targeting Companies Involved in Covid-19 Vaccine Distribution
December 04, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A global spear-phishing campaign has been targeting organizations associated with the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines since September 2020, according to new research. Attributing the operation to a nation-state actor,  IBM Security X-Force researchers  said the attacks took aim at the vaccine cold chain, companies responsible for storing and delivering the COVID-19 vaccine at safe temperatures. The development has prompted the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to  issue an alert , urging Operation Warp Speed ( OWS ) organizations and companies involved in vaccine storage and transport to review the indicators of compromise (IoCs) and beef up their defenses. It is unclear whether any of the phishing attempts were successful, but the company said it has notified appropriate entities and authorities about this targeted attack. The phishing emails, dating to September, targeted organizations in Italy, Germany, South Korea, the Czech Republic, greater Europe

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

Several Unpatched Popular Android Apps Put Millions of Users at Risk of Hacking

Several Unpatched Popular Android Apps Put Millions of Users at Risk of Hacking
December 03, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
A number of high-profile Android apps are still using an unpatched version of Google's widely-used app update library, potentially putting the personal data of hundreds of millions of smartphone users at risk of hacking. Many popular apps, including Grindr, Bumble, OkCupid, Cisco Teams, Moovit, Yango Pro, Microsoft Edge, Xrecorder, and PowerDirector, are still vulnerable and can be hijacked to steal sensitive data, such as passwords, financial details, and e-mails. The bug, tracked as  CVE-2020-8913 , is rated 8.8 out of 10.0 for severity and impacts Android's Play Core Library versions prior to  1.7.2 . Although Google addressed the vulnerability in March,  new findings  from Check Point Research show that many third-party app developers are yet to integrate the new Play Core library into their apps to mitigate the threat fully. "Unlike server-side vulnerabilities, where the vulnerability is patched completely once the patch is applied to the server, for client-side

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

Google Hacker Details Zero-Click 'Wormable' Wi-Fi Exploit to Hack iPhones

Google Hacker Details Zero-Click 'Wormable' Wi-Fi Exploit to Hack iPhones
December 01, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Google Project Zero white-hat hacker Ian Beer on Tuesday disclosed details of a now-patched critical "wormable" iOS bug that could have made it possible for a remote attacker to gain complete control of any device in the vicinity over Wi-Fi. The exploit makes it possible to "view all the photos, read all the email, copy all the private messages and monitor everything which happens on [the device] in real-time,"  said  Beer in a lengthy blog post detailing his six-month-long efforts into building a proof-of-concept single-handedly. The  flaw  (tracked as  CVE-2020-3843 ) was addressed by Apple in a series of security updates pushed as part of  iOS 13.3.1 ,  macOS Catalina 10.15.3 , and  watchOS 5.3.7  earlier this year. "A remote attacker may be able to cause unexpected system termination or corrupt kernel memory," the iPhone maker noted in its advisory, adding the "memory corruption issue was addressed with improved input validation." The v

Indian National Gets 20-Year Jail in United States for Running Scam Call Centers

Indian National Gets 20-Year Jail in United States for Running Scam Call Centers
November 30, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
An Indian national on Monday was  sentenced to 20 years in prison  in the Southern District of Texas for operating and funding India-based call centers that defrauded US victims out of millions of dollars between 2013 and 2016. Hitesh Madhubhai Patel (aka Hitesh Hinglaj), who hails from the city of Ahmedabad, India, was sentenced in connection with charges of fraud and money laundering. He was also ordered to pay restitution of $8,970,396 to identified victims of his crimes. Earlier this January, Patel  pleaded guilty  to wire fraud conspiracy and general conspiracy to commit identification fraud, access device fraud, money laundering, and impersonation of a federal officer or employee. "The defendant defrauded vulnerable US victims out of tens of millions of dollars by spearheading a conspiracy whose members boldly impersonated federal government officials and preyed on victims' fears of adverse government action," said Acting Attorney General Brian C. Rabbitt of t
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