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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: rootkit

New Cryptojacking Malware Targeting Apache, Oracle, Redis Servers

New Cryptojacking Malware Targeting Apache, Oracle, Redis Servers
February 01, 2021Ravie Lakshmanan
A financially-motivated threat actor notorious for its cryptojacking attacks has leveraged a revised version of their malware to target cloud infrastructures using vulnerabilities in web server technologies, according to new research. Deployed by the China-based cybercrime group  Rocke , the Pro-Ocean cryptojacking malware now comes with improved rootkit and worm capabilities, as well as harbors new evasion tactics to sidestep cybersecurity companies' detection methods, Palo Alto Networks' Unit 42 researchers  said  in a Thursday write-up. "Pro-Ocean uses known vulnerabilities to target cloud applications," the researchers detailed. "In our analysis, we found Pro-Ocean targeting Apache ActiveMQ ( CVE-2016-3088 ), Oracle WebLogic ( CVE-2017-10271 ) and Redis (unsecure instances)." "Once installed, the malware kills any process that uses the CPU heavily, so that it's able to use 100% of the CPU and mine Monero efficiently." First documented

TrickBot Malware Gets UEFI/BIOS Bootkit Feature to Remain Undetected

TrickBot Malware Gets UEFI/BIOS Bootkit Feature to Remain Undetected
December 03, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
TrickBot , one of the most notorious and adaptable malware botnets in the world, is expanding its toolset to set its sights on firmware vulnerabilities to potentially deploy bootkits and take complete control of an infected system. The new functionality, dubbed " TrickBoot " by Advanced Intelligence (AdvIntel) and Eclypsium, makes use of readily available tools to check devices for well-known vulnerabilities that can allow attackers to inject malicious code in the UEFI/BIOS firmware of a device, granting the attackers an effective mechanism of persistent malware storage. "This marks a significant step in the evolution of TrickBot as UEFI level implants are the deepest, most powerful, and stealthy form of bootkits," the researchers said. "By adding the ability to canvas victim devices for specific UEFI/BIOS firmware vulnerabilities, TrickBot actors are able to target specific victims with firmware-level persistence that survives re-imaging or even device br

New 'MosaicRegressor' UEFI Bootkit Malware Found Active in the Wild

New 'MosaicRegressor' UEFI Bootkit Malware Found Active in the Wild
October 06, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers have spotted a rare kind of potentially dangerous malware that targets a machine's booting process to drop persistent malware. The campaign involved the use of a compromised  UEFI  (or Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) containing a malicious implant, making it the  second known public case  where a UEFI rootkit has been used in the wild. According to  Kaspersky , the rogue UEFI firmware images were modified to incorporate several malicious modules, which were then used to drop malware on victim machines in a series of targeted cyberattacks directed against diplomats and members of an NGO from Africa, Asia, and Europe. Calling the malware framework " MosaicRegressor ," Kaspersky researchers Mark Lechtik, Igor Kuznetsov, and Yury Parshin said a telemetry analysis revealed several dozen victims between 2017 and 2019, all of whom had some ties to North Korea. UEFI is a firmware interface and a replacement for BIOS that improves security, e

Microsoft Launches Free Linux Forensics and Rootkit Malware Detection Service

Microsoft Launches Free Linux Forensics and Rootkit Malware Detection Service
July 07, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Microsoft has announced a new free-to-use initiative aimed at uncovering forensic evidence of sabotage on Linux systems, including rootkits and intrusive malware that may otherwise go undetected. The cloud offering, dubbed Project Freta , is a snapshot-based memory forensic mechanism that aims to provide automated full-system volatile memory inspection of virtual machine (VM) snapshots, with capabilities to spot malicious software, kernel rootkits , and other stealthy malware techniques such as process hiding . The project is named after Warsaw's Freta Street , the birthplace of Marie Curie, the famous French-Polish physicist who brought X-ray medical imaging to the battlefield during World War I. "Modern malware is complex, sophisticated, and designed with non-discoverability as a core tenet," said Mike Walker, Microsoft's senior director of New Security Ventures. "Project Freta intends to automate and democratize VM forensics to a point where every us

Dell Releases A New Cybersecurity Utility To Detect BIOS Attacks

Dell Releases A New Cybersecurity Utility To Detect BIOS Attacks
April 14, 2020Wang Wei
Computer manufacturing giant Dell has released a new security tool for its commercial customers that aims to protect their computers from stealthy and sophisticated cyberattacks involving the compromise of the BIOS. Dubbed ' SafeBIOS Events & Indicators of Attack ' (IoA), the new endpoint security software is a behavior-based threat detection system that alerts users when BIOS settings of their computers undergo some unusual changes. BIOS (Basic Input Output System) is a small but highly-privileged program that handles critical operations and starts your computer before handing it over to your operating system. Protecting the BIOS program is crucial because: Changes to the system BIOS settings could allow malicious software to run during the boot process, Once a hacker takes over the BIOS, he can stealthily control the targeted computer and gain access to the data stored on it, Malware in BIOS remains persistent and doesn't get away even when you format or

Over 40 Drivers Could Let Hackers Install Persistent Backdoor On Windows PCs

Over 40 Drivers Could Let Hackers Install Persistent Backdoor On Windows PCs
August 11, 2019Swati Khandelwal
If you own a device, or a hardware component, manufactured by ASUS, Toshiba, Intel, NVIDIA, Huawei, or other 15 other vendors listed below, you're probably screwed. A team of security researchers has discovered high-risk security vulnerabilities in more than 40 drivers from at least 20 different vendors that could allow attackers to gain most privileged permission on the system and hide malware in a way that remains undetected over time, sometimes for years. For sophisticated attackers, maintaining persistence after compromising a system is one of the most important tasks, and to achieve this, existing hardware vulnerabilities sometimes play an important role. One such component is a device driver, commonly known as a driver or hardware driver, a software program that controls a particular type of hardware device, helping it to communicate with the computer's operating system properly. Since device drivers sit between the hardware and the operating system itself and in

Hackers Infect 50,000 MS-SQL and PHPMyAdmin Servers with Rootkit Malware

Hackers Infect 50,000 MS-SQL and PHPMyAdmin Servers with Rootkit Malware
May 29, 2019Mohit Kumar
Cyber Security researchers at Guardicore Labs today published a detailed report on a widespread cryptojacking campaign attacking Windows MS-SQL and PHPMyAdmin servers worldwide. Dubbed Nansh0u , the malicious campaign is reportedly being carried out by an APT-style Chinese hacking group who has already infected nearly 50,000 servers and are installing a sophisticated kernel-mode rootkit on compromised systems to prevent the malware from being terminated. The campaign, which dates back to February 26 but was first detected in early-April, has been found delivering 20 different payload versions hosted on various hosting providers. The attack relies on the brute-forcing technique after finding publicly accessible Windows MS-SQL and PHPMyAdmin servers using a simple port scanner. Upon successful login authentication with administrative privileges, attackers execute a sequence of MS-SQL commands on the compromised system to download malicious payload from a remote file server and

Scranos: New Rapidly Evolving Rootkit-Enabled Spyware Discovered

Scranos: New Rapidly Evolving Rootkit-Enabled Spyware Discovered
April 16, 2019Swati Khandelwal
A new powerful rootkit-enabled spyware operation has been discovered wherein hackers are distributing multifunctional malware disguised as cracked software or trojanized app posing as legitimate software like video players, drivers and even anti-virus products. While the rootkit malware—dubbed Scranos —which was first discovered late last year, still appears to be a work in progress, it is continuously evolving, testing new components and regularly making an improvement to old components, which makes it a significant threat. Scranos features a modular design that has already gained capabilities to steal login credentials and payment accounts from various popular services, exfiltrate browsing history and cookies, get YouTube subscribers, display ads, as well as download and execute any payload. According to a 48 page in-depth report Bitdefender shared with The Hacker News prior to its release, the malware gains persistence on infected machines by installing a digitally-signed

Cybersecurity Researchers Spotted First-Ever UEFI Rootkit in the Wild

Cybersecurity Researchers Spotted First-Ever UEFI Rootkit in the Wild
September 27, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Cybersecurity researchers at ESET have unveiled what they claim to be the first-ever UEFI rootkit being used in the wild, allowing hackers to implant persistent malware on the targeted computers that could survive a complete hard-drive wipe. Dubbed LoJax , the UEFI rootkit is part of a malware campaign conducted by the infamous Sednit group, also known as APT28, Fancy Bear , Strontium , and Sofacy , to target several government organizations in the Balkans as well as in Central and Eastern Europe. Operating since at least 2007, Sednit group is a state-sponsored hacking group believed to be a unit of GRU (General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate), a Russian secret military intelligence agency. The hacking group has been associated with a number of high profile attacks, including the DNC hack just before the U.S. 2016 presidential election . UEFI, or Unified Extensible Firmware Interface, a replacement for the traditional BIOS, is a core and critical firmware component of a

3 New CIA-developed Hacking Tools For MacOS & Linux Exposed

3 New CIA-developed Hacking Tools For MacOS & Linux Exposed
July 27, 2017Swati Khandelwal
WikiLeaks has just published a new set of classified documents linked to another CIA project, dubbed ' Imperial ,' which reveals details of at least three CIA-developed hacking tools and implants designed to target computers running Apple Mac OS X and different flavours of Linux operating systems. If you are a regular reader of THN, you must be aware that this latest revelation by the whistleblower organisation is the part of an ongoing CIA-Vault 7 leaks, marking it as the 18th batch in the series. If you are unaware of the Vault 7 leaks, you can head on to the second of this article for having a brief look on all the leaks at once. Achilles — Tool to Backdoor Mac OS X Disk Images Dubbed Achilles , the hacking tool allows CIA operators to combine malicious Trojan applications with a legitimate Mac OS app into a disk image installer (.DMG) file. The binding tool, the shell script is written in Bash, gives the CIA operators "one or more desired operator specified e

New GhostHook Attack Bypasses Windows 10 PatchGuard Protections

New GhostHook Attack Bypasses Windows 10 PatchGuard Protections
June 22, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Vulnerabilities discovered in Microsoft PatchGuard kernel protection could allow hackers to plant rootkits on computers running the company's latest and secure operating system, Windows 10. Researchers at CyberArk Labs have developed a new attack technique which could allow hackers to completely bypass PatchGuard, and hook a malicious kernel code (rootkits) at the kernel level. PatchGuard, or (or Kernel Patch Protection) is a software tool that has been designed to forbid the kernel of 64-bit versions of Windows OS from being patched, preventing hackers from running rootkits or executing malicious code at the kernel level. Dubbed GhostHook , the attack is what the CyberArk Labs researchers call the first attack technique that thwarts the defensive technology to bypass PatchGuard, though it requires a hacker to already be present on a compromised system and running code in the kernel. So, basically, this is a post-exploitation attack. "[GhostHook] is neither an

More Hacking Groups Found Exploiting SMB Flaw Weeks Before WannaCry

More Hacking Groups Found Exploiting SMB Flaw Weeks Before WannaCry
May 19, 2017Mohit Kumar
Since the Shadow Brokers released the zero-day software vulnerabilities and hacking tools – allegedly belonged to the NSA's elite hacking team Equation Group – several hacking groups and individual hackers have started using them in their own way. The April's data dump was believed to be the most damaging release by the Shadow Brokers till the date, as it publicly leaked lots of Windows hacking tools , including dangerous Windows SMB exploit. After the outbreak of WannaCry last week, security researchers have identified multiple different campaigns exploiting Windows SMB vulnerability (CVE-2017-0143), called Eternalblue , which has already compromised hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide. I have been even confirmed by multiple sources in hacking and intelligence community that there are lots of groups and individuals who are actively exploiting Eternalblue for different motives. Moreover, the Eternalblue SMB exploit ( MS17-010 ) has now been ported to  Met

Dangerous Rootkit found Pre-Installed on nearly 3 Million Android Phones

Dangerous Rootkit found Pre-Installed on nearly 3 Million Android Phones
November 19, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Here's some bad news for Android users again. Nearly 3 Million Android devices worldwide are vulnerable to man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks that could allow attackers to remotely execute arbitrary code with root privileges, turning over full control of the devices to hackers. According to a new report from security rating firm BitSight, the issue is due to a vulnerability in the insecure implementation of the OTA (Over-the-Air) update mechanism used by certain low-cost Android devices, including BLU Studio G from US-based Best Buy. Backdoor/Rootkit Comes Pre-installed The vulnerable OTA mechanism, which is associated with Chinese mobile firm Ragentek Group, contains a hidden binary — resides as /system/bin/debugs — that runs with root privileges and communicates over unencrypted channels with three hosts. According to the researchers, this privileged binary not only exposes user-specific information to MITM attackers but also acts as a rootkit, potentially allowing

Oops! Microsoft Accidentally Leaks Backdoor Keys to Bypass UEFI Secure Boot

Oops! Microsoft Accidentally Leaks Backdoor Keys to Bypass UEFI Secure Boot
August 10, 2016Swati Khandelwal
It's True  —  There is no such backdoor that only its creator can access. Microsoft has accidentally leaked the Secret keys that allow hackers to unlock devices protected by UEFI ( Unified Extensible Firmware Interface ) Secure Boot feature. What's even worse? It will be impossible for Microsoft to undo its leak. Secure Boot is a security feature that protects your device from certain types of malware, such as a rootkit, which can hijack your system bootloader, as well as, Secure Boot restricts you from running any non-Microsoft operating system on your device. In other words, when Secure Boot is enabled, you will only be able to boot Microsoft approved ( cryptographically signature checking ) operating systems. However, the Golden Keys disclosed by two security researchers, using alias MY123 and Slipstream , can be used to install non-Windows operating systems, say GNU/Linux or Android, on the devices protected by Secure Boot. Moreover, according to the blog pos

What is Strictly Enforced Verified Boot in Android 7.0 Nougat?

What is Strictly Enforced Verified Boot in Android 7.0 Nougat?
July 20, 2016Swati Khandelwal
As far as security is concerned, Google is going very strict with the newest version of its mobile operating system. Until now, Google has not done more than just alerting you of the potential threats when your Android device runs the check as part of the boot process. Android Marshmallow 6.0 does nothing more than just warning you that your device has been compromised, though it continues to let your device boot up. 1. Android Nougat 7.0 Getting Strictly Enforced 'Verified Boot' In Android Nougat , Google has taken the security of its Android operating system to the next level by strictly enforcing verified boot on devices. Among multiple layers of security protection, Android uses verified boot - since Android version 4.4 KitKat - that improves its device's security by using cryptographic integrity checking to detect if your device has been tampered with. Now, Android Nougat will strictly enforce the boot check, giving you far more than just a warning.

Nemesis Bootkit — A New Stealthy Payment Card Malware

Nemesis Bootkit — A New Stealthy Payment Card Malware
December 08, 2015Swati Khandelwal
Another day, another stunning Malware – this time targeting banks, payment card processors, and other financial services. Security researchers have uncovered a sophisticated payment card malware that executes before the operating system boots, making the malware very difficult to detect and much less remove. The malware in question is part of " Nemesis " – a malware suite that includes all software programs for capturing screens, transferring files, injecting processes, logging keystrokes, and carrying out other malicious activities on the infected computers. Nemesis malware family has been seen in the past, targeting banks, ATMs, financial transaction processing, credit unions, and financial business service companies. Nemesis Bootkit Malware – Reappears even after Re-installation of the OS The malware with bootkit functionality has been in operation since early this year and has the ability to modify the legitimate VBR ( Volume Boot Record ) that ma
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