The Cobalt hacking group was one of the first to promptly and actively exploit CVE-2017-11882 (patched last November) in their cybercriminal campaigns. We uncovered several others following suit in early December, delivering a plethora of threats that included Pony/FAREIT, FormBook, ZBOT, and Ursnif. Another stood out to us: a recent campaign that used the same vulnerability to install a “cracked” version of the information-stealing Loki.Read More
The Linux vulnerability called Dirty COW (CVE-2016-5195) was first disclosed to the public in 2016. The vulnerability was discovered in upstream Linux platforms such as Redhat, and Android, which kernel is based on Linux. It is categorized as a serious privilege escalation flaw that allows an attacker to gain root access on the targeted system. Dirty COW attacks on Android has been silent since its discovery, perhaps because it took attackers some time to build a stable exploit for major devices. Almost a year later, Trend Micro researchers captured samples of ZNIU (detected as AndroidOS_ZNIU)—the first malware family to exploit the vulnerability on the Android platform.Read More
We’ve uncovered a new exploit kit in the wild through a malvertising campaign we’ve dubbed “ProMediads”. We call this new exploit kit Sundown-Pirate, as it’s indeed a bootleg of its precursors and actually named so by its back panel.
ProMediads has been active as early as 2016, employing Rig and Sundown exploit kits to deliver malware. Its activities dropped off in mid-February this year, but suddenly welled on June 16 via Rig. However, we noticed that ProMediads eschewed Rig in favor of Sundown-Pirate on June 25.
It’s worth noting that Sundown-Pirate is only employed by ProMediads so far. This could mean that it’s yet another private exploit kit, like the similarly styled GreenFlash Sundown exploit kit that was exclusively used by the ShadowGate campaign.Read More
At the end of April this year, we found Astrum exploit kit employing Diffie-Hellman key exchange to prevent monitoring tools and researchers from replaying their traffic. As AdGholas started to push the exploit, we saw another evolution: Astrum using HTTPS to further obscure their malicious traffic. We spotted a new AdGholas malvertising campaign using the…Read More
The decline of exploit kit activity—particularly from well-known exploit kits like Magnitude, Nuclear, Neutrino, and Rig during the latter half of 2016—doesn’t mean exploit kits are throwing in the towel just yet. This is the case with Astrum (also known as Stagano), an old and seemingly reticent exploit kit we observed to have been updated multiple times as of late.
Astrum’s recent activities feature several upgrades and shows how it’s starting to move away from the more established malware mentioned above. It appears these changes were done to lay the groundwork for future campaigns, and possibly to broaden its use. With a modus operandi that deters analysis and forensics by abusing the Diffie-Hellman key exchange, it appears Astrum is throwing down the gauntlet.Read More