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    Archive for August 27th, 2014

    We’re seeing schemes that are taking advantage of the buzz around the upcoming developer preview release of Windows™ 9 this September.

    One of the threats we saw was found using some combinations of keywords like Windows 9freeleak and download in popular search engines.

    It involves a potentially malicious website that offers what appears to be a free download of the yet-to-be-released Windows OS.

    Figure 1. Blog offering free Windows 9 download

    Figure 1. Blog offering free Windows 9 download

    Users who click the ‘Download Now’ button will be redirected to a download page provided by the file-hosting service The file being offered as a free download is 5.11 GB in total size.

    Figure 2. Turbobit download page

    Figure 2. Turbobit download page

    Users who proceed with the download are brought to another page that prompts users to install a video file download manager.

    Figure 3-1. Notification offering iLivid video download manager

    Figure 3-2. Notification offering iLivid video download manager

    Figure 3. Notifications offering users to download VideoPerformanceSetup.exe

    The file (VideoPerformanceSetup.exe)  is an adware detected as ADW_BRANTALL.GA. Upon further analysis, the 5.11 GB file instead downloads a reskinned Windows 7 SP1 64-bit bundled with a handful of software utilities, rather than a ‘leaked’ copy of Windows 9. The default language setting for the installation is Portuguese (Brazil).

    More Threats Leveraging the Windows 9 Hype

    We found two more threats capitalizing on the Windows 9 hype. The first is similar to the one above – another blog offering a free download of Windows 9 behind a file hosting service link. That’s where the similarity ends however, as the downloaded file is a completely different one – one detected as ADW_INSTALLREX.GA. When executed, this adware downloads files detected as ADW_WAJADH, ADW_SPROTECT, and ADW_MULTIPLUG respectively.

    Figure 4. Blog page offering free Windows 9 download

    Figure 4. Blog page offering free Windows 9 download

    We also found a YouTube video page with the download link provided in the video’s description. Clicking the link in the description downloads two files – one labeled as Keygen.exe and the other as Setup.exe. Both are detected by Trend Micro as ADW_OUTBROWSE.GA

    Figure 5. YouTube page offering free Windows 9 download

    Figure 5. YouTube page offering free Windows 9 download

    The download links in both abovementioned cases are verified to be grayware.

    Other threats that we’ve spotted at the time of this writing involve blogs with similar content, but instead of grayware, their payloads mostly involve redirecting to phishing scams that go after the user’s mobile phone number.

    This influx of threats taking advantage of Windows 9’s rumored developer preview release date further proves what we’ve been saying all along: that cybercriminals will always use what is currently popular to bait their potential victims. We’ve seen this kind of cybercriminal activity come up again and again with similar events, so it’s safe to assume that the amount of threats using Windows 9 as a lure will continue to increase as time goes on. The fact that it’s not even the official release – it’s just a preview – shows just how much cybercriminals are intent on cashing in on the hype. We may see even more after the release of the actual retail code itself, with malware posing as ‘cracked’ or ‘free’ versions.

    Trend Micro blocks all threat components involved in this malicious campaign.

    With additional analysis by Arabelle Ebora, Anisalam Moner, Christian Potencia and Christopher So

    Posted in Bad Sites, Social | Comments Off on Cybercriminals Leverage Rumored Windows 9 Developer Preview Release With Social Engineering

    The first half of this year has been quite eventful for the mobile threat landscape. Sure, we had an idea the state of affairs from 2013 would continue on to this year, but we didn’t know just to what extent. From ballooning mobile malware/high risk app numbers to vulnerabilities upon vulnerabilities, let’s recap just what happened in the past six months and see if we can learn anything from them for the six months ahead.

    So, what did happen in the first half of 2014? Well, to summarize:

    • 2 million and counting: After only six months of reaching 1 million, the combined amount of mobile malware/high risk apps has doubled, to 2 million. That’s a growth of 170,000 apps PER month.
    • The first coin mining mobile malware: ANDROIDOS_KAGECOIN, a malicious app that turned any infected mobile device into a Bitcoin/Dogecoin/Litecoin miner was discovered in March.
    • The first mobile ransomware: ANDROIDOS_LOCKER locked phones by way of obstructing screens with a large UI window. It was discovered in May.
    • Deep Web: Cybercriminals also began to use TOR in their malicious apps, to cover their trails.
    • Operation Emmental: last July we successfully uncovered a cybercriminal operation that countered online banking’s 2-factor authentication. We dubbed this after the famous cheese Emmental.

    A handful of major vulnerabilities were also discovered during this half of 2014, ranging from the Android Custom Permission vulnerability to the iOS Goto Fail vulnerability. Platform-agnostic vulnerability Heartbleed also made the news, affecting not just desktops but basically any platform that could connect to the web and load HTTP:// websites.

    Hugely-popular events were also taken advantage of by cybercriminals through social engineering – the 2014 FIFA World Cup, for example, heralded the coming of fake game apps sporting the event’s name, with each one sporting malicious routines. Flappy Bird, the addictive game that had the entire mobile gaming scene taking attention, also garnered its own share of malicious clones.

    That’s the first half of 2014 in a nutshell, with the most noteworthy events encapsulated. Can we learn anything from them in time to prepare for the next six months? Yes, of course – one lesson we can easily derive here is that we can always expect cybercriminals to take advantage of legitimate services that help make our lives more convenient online – and sometimes, they use it in ways we’ll never expect them to. So we need to look at new services coming out and, after seeing if they CAN be used maliciously, prepare for that inevitability. It helps to be prepared, after all.

    Another lesson for the second half of 2014 is that people need to take mobile threats much more seriously. It’s no longer just a passing fad or something we can just forget about – it’s here, it’s happening, and like social engineering it’s going to be a part of our lives until the next breakthrough in technology comes along. Users, business owners, professionals need to protect themselves from becoming a victim – and all it takes are some best practices and a security solution.

    For more information regarding the mobile threat landscape and how it fared in the first half of 2014, we’d like to point readers towards the latest issue of our Monthly Mobile Report, titled The Mobile Landscape Roundup: 1H 2014. You’ll see the events summarized above, but in more detail, along with other news events and definitely a lot more stats.

    Posted in Mobile, Vulnerabilities | Comments Off on Mobile Security Roundup 1H 2014


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