News – March 2021


  • SolarWinds-linked hacking group SilverFish abuses enterprise victims for sandbox tests

    March 18, 2021

    Cyberattackers involved in worldwide hacking campaigns are using the compromised systems of high-profile victims as playgrounds to test out malicious tool detection rates. On Thursday, Swiss cybersecurity firm Prodaft said that SilverFish (.PDF), an “extremely skilled” threat group, has been responsible for intrusions at over 4,720 private and government organizations including “Fortune 500 companies, ministries, airlines, ...

  • Apple developers targeted by new malware, EggShell backdoor

    March 18, 2021

    Malicious Xcode projects are being used to hijack developer systems and spread custom EggShell backdoors. The malware, dubbed XcodeSpy, targets Xcode, an integrated development environment (IDE) used in macOS for developing Apple software and applications. According to research published by SentinelLabs on Thursday, the Run Script feature in the IDE is being exploited in targeted attacks against ...

  • Security Researcher Hides ZIP, MP3 Files Inside PNG Files on Twitter

    March 18, 2021

    A security researcher has discovered a novel steganography technique for hiding data inside a Portable Network Graphics (.PNG) image file posted on Twitter, a tactic that could be exploited by threat actors to hide malicious activity. Researcher David Buchanan heralded his discovery on Twitter earlier this week, accompanied by a photo declaring: “Save this image and ...

  • New CopperStealer malware steals Google, Apple, Facebook accounts

    March 18, 2021

    Previously undocumented account-stealing malware distributed via fake software crack sites targets the users of major service providers, including Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Apple. The malware, dubbed CopperStealer by Proofpoint researchers, is an actively developed password and cookie stealer with a downloader feature that enables its operators to deliver additional malicious payloads to infected devices. The threat actors ...

  • Convuster: macOS adware now in Rust

    March 18, 2021

    Traditionally, most malicious objects detected on the macOS platform are adware: besides the already familiar Shlayer family, the TOP 10 includes Bnodlero, Cimpli, Adload and Pirrit adware. As a rule, most tend to be written in C, Objective-C or Swift. Recently, however, cybercriminals have been paying increased attention to new programming languages, seemingly in the ...

  • FBI Releases the Internet Crime Complaint Center 2020 Internet Crime Report, Including COVID-19 Scam Statistics

    March 17, 2021

    The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center has released its annual report. The 2020 Internet Crime Report includes information from 791,790 complaints of suspected internet crime—an increase of more than 300,000 complaints from 2019—and reported losses exceeding $4.2 billion. State-specific statistics have also been released and can be found within the 2020 Internet Crime Report and ...

  • $4,000 COVID-19 ‘Relief Checks’ Cloak Dridex Malware

    March 17, 2021

    Cybercriminals have wasted no time in hopping on the American Rescue Plan – the COVID-19 relief legislation just signed into law – as a lure for email-based scams. According to researchers at Cofense, a campaign began circulating in March that capitalized on Americans’ interest in the forthcoming $1,400 relief payments and other aid. The emails impersonate ...

  • FBI warns of rise in PYSA ransomware operators targeting US, UK schools

    March 17, 2021

    The FBI has warned of a surge in attacks against schools in which ransomware operators are stealing data to pile on the pressure for payment. In a joint FBI and DHS-CISA flash industry alert (.PDF) this week, law enforcement said a recent increase in attacks leveraging PYSA ransomware, also known as Mespinoza, has been traced to ...

  • Cisco Plugs Security Hole in Small Business Routers

    March 17, 2021

    A popular line of small business routers made by Cisco Systems are vulnerable to a high-severity vulnerability. If exploited, the flaw could allow a remote – albeit authenticated – attacker to execute code or restart affected devices unexpectedly. Cisco issued fixes on Wednesday for the flaw in its RV132W ADSL2+ Wireless-N VPN routers and RV134W VDSL2 ...

  • China-linked TA428 Continues to Target Russia and Mongolia IT Companies

    March 17, 2021

    Recorded Future’s Insikt Group recently identified renewed activity attributed to the suspected Chinese threat activity group TA428. The identified activity overlaps with a TA428 campaign previously reported by Proofpoint as “Operation LagTime IT”, which targeted Russian and East Asian government information technology agencies in 2019. Based on the infrastructure, tactics, and victim organization identified, we ...

  • Cybercriminals Are Making, and Demanding, More Money Than Ever

    March 17, 2021

    Ransomware is one of the top threats in cybersecurity and a focus area for Palo Alto Networks. The global threat intelligence team (Unit 42) and incident response team (The Crypsis Group) have partnered to create the 2021 Unit 42 Ransomware Threat Report to provide the latest insights on the top ransomware variants, ransomware payment trends ...

  • Hackers are targeting telecoms companies to steal 5G secrets

    March 16, 2021

    A cyber-espionage campaign is targeting telecoms companies around the world with attacks using malicious downloads in an effort to steal sensitive data – including information about 5G technology – from compromised victims. Uncovered by cybersecurity researchers at McAfee, the campaign is targeting telecommunications providers in Southeast Asia, Europe and the United States. Dubbed Operation Diànxùn, researchers ...

  • Spectre proof-of-concept shows how dangerous side-channel attacks against JavaScript engine can be

    March 15, 2021

    Google has released a proof of concept (PoC) code to demonstrate the practicality of Spectre side-channel attacks against a browser’s JavaScript engine to leak information from its memory. Google in 2018 detailed two variants of Spectre, one of which – dubbed variant 1 (CVE-2017-5753) – concerned Javascript exploitation against browsers. Spectre targeted the process in modern ...

  • New Mirai Variant Targeting Network Security Devices

    March 15, 2021

    On Feb. 23, 2021, one of the IPs involved in the attack was updated to serve a Mirai variant leveraging CVE-2021-27561 and CVE-2021-27562, mere hours after vulnerability details were published. On March 3, 2021, the same samples were served from a third IP address, with the addition of an exploit leveraging CVE-2021-22502. Furthermore, on March ...

  • COVID-19: Examining the threat landscape a year later

    March 15, 2021

    A year ago — everything changed. In an effort to stem the tide of a rapidly spreading pandemic, the world shut down. Shops were forced to shut their doors, and whole countries were placed on stringent lockdowns. Schools were closed around the world, with more than one billion children affected, and the vast majority of ...

  • Critical Security Hole Can Knock Smart Meters Offline

    March 12, 2021

    Critical security vulnerabilities in Schneider Electric smart meters could allow an attacker a path to remote code execution (RCE), or to reboot the meter causing a denial-of-service (DoS) condition on the device. Schneider Electric’s PowerLogic ION/PM smart meter product line, like other smart meters, is used by consumers in their homes, but also by utility companies ...

  • REvil Group Claims Slew of Ransomware Attacks

    March 12, 2021

    The REvil ransomware threat group is on a cyberattack tear, claiming over the past two weeks to have infected nine organizations across Africa, Europe, Mexico and the U.S. The organizations include two law firms, an insurance company, an architectural firm, a construction company and an agricultural co-op, all located in the U.S.; as well as two ...

  • New ZHtrap botnet malware deploys honeypots to find more targets

    March 12, 2021

    A new botnet is hunting down and transforming infected routers, DVRs, and UPnP network devices into honeypots that help it find other targets to infect. The malware, dubbed ZHtrap by the 360 Netlab security researchers who spotted it, is loosely based on Mirai’s source code, and it comes with support for x86, ARM, MIPS, and other ...

  • Threat Assessment: DearCry Ransomware

    March 12, 2021

    Last week, Microsoft reported that attackers compromised Exchange Mail Servers with the use of four zero-day vulnerabilities. While patches have been released by Microsoft, adversaries are still attacking vulnerable versions of Microsoft Exchange Servers with malicious tools, malware and data exfiltration. Further, Microsoft has confirmed the existence of a ransomware variant leveraging these vulnerabilities, which ...

  • Security and Privacy of COVID-19 Contact-Tracing Apps

    March 12, 2021

    Symantec analyzed the top 25 COVID-19 national contact-tracing apps to see which follow security and privacy best practices. Unfortunately, in this new COVID-19 era it’s not just our computers we have to protect from infection, but also ourselves and our loved ones. Along with social distancing, wearing a mask, and washing our hands, technology is also ...