Posts Categorized: Destructive behavior


Cybercrime Trends 2013 – Year in Review

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It’s that time of the year! The moment when we reflect back on the cybercrime tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) that shaped 2013, in order to constructively speculate on what’s to come for 2014 in terms of fraudulent and malicious campaigns, orchestrated by opportunistic cybercriminal adversaries across the globe. Throughout 2013, we continued to observe and profile TTPs, which were crucial for the success, profitability and growth of the cybercrime ecosystem internationally, such as, for instance, widespread proliferation of the campaigns, professionalism and the implementation of basic business/economic/marketing concepts, improved QA (Quality Assurance), vertical integration in an attempt to occupy […]

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Webroot’s Threat Blog Most Popular Posts for 2012

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It’s that time of the year! The moment when we look back, and reflect on Webroot’s Threat Blog most popular content for 2012. Which are this year’s most popular posts? What distinguished them from the rest of the analyses published on a daily basis, throughout the entire year? Let’s find out.

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This blackhole exploit kit gives you Windows Media Player and a whole lot more

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By Mike Johnson As a follow-up to the Blackhole Exploit posting, I thought I would share one aspect of my job that I truely enjoy: Discovery. While investigating some active urls being served up via a blackhole kit, I noticed something quite odd, as I would end up on sites that had malicious code injected into their webpages. Once the redirection to the blackhole kit was initiated, I saw the usual exploits taking place, first being Internet Explorer and Adobe Flash, then onto Adobe Reader and Java. This time, the kit didn’t stop there. Internet Explorer proceeded to launch Windows Media Player. Since I had never […]

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Trojans Employ Misdirection Instead of Obfuscation

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An unusual family of Trojans, apparently of Chinese origin, engages in rootkit-like behavior which seems designed not to hide the presence of the malware on an infected system, but to misdirect or confuse a technical person who might be using system analysis tools on an infected computer. The Trojans all originated from a server operated by a free Web host in China, and each sample we tested sent profiling data about the infected system to a command-and-control server located on yet another free Web host, also located in China. It appears to have capabilities to receive instructions to download other […]

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TDL3 and ZeroAccess: More of the Same?

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By Marco Giuliani In our previous technical analysis of the ZeroAccess rootkit, we highlighted how it acts as a framework by infecting the machine — setting up its own private space in the disk, first through a dedicated file system on the disk, and more recently by using a hidden and locked directory. This is where the rootkit stores the modules it downloads from the command and control servers. Until now, the plugins we’ve monitored have been ad-clickers and search engine hijackers. We have also noted how the ZeroAccess rootkit acts very similar to the TDL3 rootkit, either by infecting […]

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ZeroAccess Gets Another Update

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By Marco Giuliani Among the most infamous kernel mode rootkits in the wild, most of them have had a slowdown in their development cycle – TDL rootkit, MBR rootkit, Rustock are just some examples. The same doesn’t apply for the ZeroAccess rootkit. The team behind it is working quite hard, which we know for a fact because I’ve seen it. We already talked about this rootkit and its evolutions in several blog posts, along with a white paper that documents more in depth all the technical features of the malware. The last major update released by the team behind ZeroAccess […]

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ZeroAccess Rootkit Guards Itself with a Tripwire

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By Marco Giuliani The latest generation of a rapidly evolving family of kernel-mode rootkits called, variously, ZeroAccess or Max++, seems to get more powerful and effective with each new variant. The rootkit infects a random system driver, overwriting its code with its own, infected driver, and hijacks the storage driver chain in order to hide its presence on the disk. But its own self-protection mechanism is its most interesting characteristic: It lays a virtual tripwire. I’ve written about this rootkit in a few recent blog posts and in a white paper. On an infected computer, this new driver sets up […]

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With IM Buddies Like These, Who Needs Frienemies?

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The other morning, I walked into the office to find a slew of instant messaging buddy requests from total strangers. This isn’t unexpected: I frequently get buddy requests on IM accounts I maintain for research purposes that contain malicious URLs and other useful research data. But this was one request I wasn’t expecting. The inquiry, written in both English and Russian, was simply an advertisement for “Organization of DDOS attacks” from an ICQ account that has not been used since the friend request came in. The somewhat perplexing offer claims the service offers “support online 24/7/365″ (finally, a DDOS service […]

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Removing Popureb Doesn’t Require a Windows Reinstall

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By Marco Giuliani Last Wednesday, Microsoft published a blog post detailing a significant update to a piece of malware named Popureb. The malware adds code to the Master Boot Record, or MBR, a region of the hard disk that’s read by the PC during bootup, long before the operating system has had a chance to get started. Researchers sometimes refer to these kinds of malware as bootkits, or a rootkit which loads at such a low level during the boot process that it is invisible to the operating system, and therefore very difficult to remove. Microsoft researcher Chun Feng detailed […]

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