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XMRig used in new macOS cryptominer

A new piece of cryptocurrency-mining malware on macOS has been found to use the popular XMRig miner.
Users complaining on Apple's official discussion forum about processes that use a lot of CPU have led to the discovery of a new piece of cryptocurrency-mining malware on macOS… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/05/xmrig-used-new-macos-cryptominer/

GravityRAT malware takes your system's temperature

The GravityRAT malware, discovered by Cisco Talos researchers, gives some interesting insight into modern malware development.
Cisco Talos researchers Warren Mercer and Paul Rascagnères recently discovered and analysed 'GravityRAT', an advanced Remote Access Trojan (RAT) that appears to have been used in… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/04/gravityrat-malware-takes-your-systems-temperature/

Using Mailchimp makes malware campaigns a little bit more successful

In recent months, some malicious spam campaigns have been spreading via the systems of Mailchimp, a well-known email service provider - a tactic which may give the campaigns a slightly higher success rate.
Sending one email is easy. Sending thousands or millions of emails is hard: one effect of the anti-spam infrastructure we have collectively built is that the process of sending… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/03/using-mailchimp-makes-malware-campaigns-little-bit-more-successful/

We need to continue the debate on the ethics and perils of publishing security research

An article by security researcher Collin Anderson reopens the debate on whether publishing threat analyses is always in the public interest.
At VB2015 in Prague, Juan Andrés Guerro-Saade, then of Kaspersky Lab, presented an important paper on the transformation of security researchers into intelligence brokers and how… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/02/we-need-continue-debate-ethics-and-perils-publishing-security-research/

There is no evidence in-the-wild malware is using Meltdown or Spectre

Reports of malware using the Meltdown or Spectre attacks are likely based on proof-of-concept code rather than files written for a malicious purpose.
Almost a month after the Meltdown and Spectre attacks against various CPUs were discovered and revealed to the public, there have been reports of the existence of malware that… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/02/there-no-evidence-wild-malware-using-meltdown-or-spectre/

Alleged author of creepy FruitFly macOS malware arrested

A 28-year old man from Ohio has been arrested on suspicion of having created the mysterious FruitFly malware that targeted macOS and used it to spy on its victims.
It is almost a year since the mysterious FruitFly malware for macOS was discovered. Malware targeting macOS is still uncommon enough to be newsworthy, but FruitFly seemed… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/01/alleged-author-creepy-fruitfly-macos-malware-arrested/

VB2017 video: Turning Trickbot: decoding an encrypted command-and-control channel

Trickbot, a banking trojan which appeared this year, seems to be a new, more modular, and more extensible malware descendant of the notorious Dyre botnet trojan. At VB2017, Symantec researcher Andrew Brandt presented a walkthrough of a typical Trickbot in…
Trickbot, first reported a year ago by Malwarebytes researcher Jérôme Segura as the successor of Dyre/Dyreza, has become perhaps the most important banking trojan of 2017. It is… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/11/vb2017-video-turning-trickbot-decoding-encrypted-command-and-control-channel/

Ebury and Mayhem server malware families still active

Ebury and Mayhem, two families of Linux server malware, about which VB published papers back in 2014, are still active and have received recent updates.
Whether it is to send spam or to redirect web traffic to malicious payloads, compromised (Linux) web servers are the glue in many a malware campaign. Two such networks of… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/10/ebury-and-mayhem-server-malware-families-still-active/

VB2017 preview: Offensive malware analysis: dissecting OSX/FruitFly.B via a custom C&C server

We preview Patrick Wardle's VB2017 paper, in which the Synack researcher analyses the mysterious OSX/FruitFly malware by setting up a custom C&C server.
Apart from the odd taxi driver loudly making the claim, the idea that "Macs don't get malware" has become something of the past. Nevertheless, most security researchers focus on… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/09/vb2017-preview-offensive-malware-analysis-dissecting-osxfruitfly-custom-cc-server/

Hot FinSpy research completes VB2017 programme

Researchers from ESET have found a new way in which the FinSpy/FinFisher 'government spyware' can infect users, details of which they will present at VB2017 in Madrid.
The infamous FinSpy (or FinFisher) government spyware has managed to keep a low profile in recent years, though its use of two Microsoft zero-days (CVE-2017-0199 and… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/09/hot-finspy-research-makes-vb2017-programme-complete/

VB2017 preview: Android reverse engineering tools: not the usual suspects

We preview the VB2017 paper by Fortinet researcher Axelle Apvrille, in which she looks at some less obvious tools for reverse engineering Android malware.
Six years ago (coincidentally the last time the VB conference was held in Spain) saw the first VB conference paper presented on Android malware, which at that time was still an… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/09/vb2017-preview-android-reverse-engineering-tools-not-usual-suspects/

Malicious CCleaner update points to a major weakness in our infrastructure

Researchers from Cisco Talos have found that a recent version of the widely used CCleaner tool installed malware on the machine.
For the security community, 2017 might well be called the year of the update: two of the biggest security stories – the WannaCry outbreak and the Equifax breach – involved… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/09/malicious-ccleaner-update-points-major-weakness-our-infrastructure/

Despite the profitability of ransomware there is a good reason why mining malware is thriving

Though ransomware is far more profitable than using a compromised PC to mine bitcoins, the global distribution of malware means that there are many botnets for which mining is the most efficient way to extract money out of a PC.
When, a few years ago, a friend and I were analysing a rather large botnet and we saw some network traffic indicating that it was engaged in Bitcoin mining, we felt rather… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/09/despite-profitability-ransomware-there-good-reason-why-mining-malware-thriving/

VB2017 preview: Crypton - exposing malware's deepest secrets

We preview the VB2017 paper by Julia Karpin and Anna Dorfman (F5 networks), in which they present a tool to decrypt encrypted parts of malware.
Ask a programmer to perform the same task twice and they will write a tool that automates it. Malware analysts are no different, and the Virus Bulletin Conference has a long… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/09/vb2017-preview-crypton-exposing-malwares-deepest-secrets/

VB2017 preview: Mariachis and jackpotting: ATM malware from Latin America

We preview the VB2017 presentation by Kaspersky Lab researchers Thiago Marques and Fabio Assolini in which they look at malware targeting ATMs in Latin America.
A few years ago, I saw an ATM being opened for the first time. "Hold on," I thought, "this is really just a Windows XP PC!" Suddenly, I realised that, to attack an ATM,… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/08/vb2017-preview-mariachis-and-jackpotting-atm-malware-latin-america/

The WannaCry kill switch wasn't inserted to make someone a hero

Following the arrest of WannaCry hero Marcus Hutchings, suggestions have been made that he was behind the WannaCry malware itself, and that he inserted the kill switch to make himself a hero. This seems highly unlikely.
Almost three months after its damaging outbreak, the WannaCry malware remains shrouded in mystery. Last week's arrest of security researcher Marcus Hutchings, better known and… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/08/wannacry-kill-switch-wasnt-inserted-make-someone-hero/

By removing VPNs from its Chinese App Store, Apple turns its biggest security asset against its users

To comply with Chinese laws, Apple has removed all iOS VPN apps from its Chinese app store. This means that the company uses iOS's strongest security asset, its tightly controlled App Store, against its own users.
A little over a month ago, Apple's iPhone celebrated its tenth birthday. The iPhone has been one of the biggest commercial success stories ever, but it has also been a great… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/08/removing-vpns-its-chinese-app-store-apple-turns-its-biggest-security-asset-aggasnt-its-users/

48 hours after initial reports, many mysteries remain around the latest ransomware/wiper threat

Whether you call it Petya, NotPetya, Nyetya or Petna, there are still many mysteries surrounding the malware that has been causing havoc around the world.
"What's in a name? that which we call a rose By any other name would smell as sweet" Shakespeare's philosophising can equally be applied to malware, and whether you call it… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/06/48-hours-after-initial-reports-many-mysteries-around-latest-ransomwarewiper-threat-remain/

VB2016 paper: Steam stealers: it's all fun and games until someone's account gets hijacked

Last year, Kaspersky Lab researcher Santiago Pontiroli and PwC's Bart Parys presented a VB2016 paper analysing the malicious threats faced by users of the Steam online gaming platform, and highlighting how organized criminals are making money with these p…
The online games market is huge, and the Steam platform is a huge player in that market. Users registered on the Steam platform use their credit cards to buy content, and… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/06/vb2016-paper-steam-stealers-its-all-fun-and-games-until-someones-account-gets-hijacked/

Research paper shows it may be possible to distinguish malware traffic using TLS

Researchers at Cisco have published a paper describing how it may be possible to use machine learning to distinguish malware command-and-control traffic using TLS from regular enterprise traffic, and to classify malware families based on their encrypted C…
Researchers at Cisco have published a paper (PDF) describing how it may be possible to use machine learning to distinguish malware command-and-control (C&C) traffic using TLS from… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/06/research-paper-shows-it-may-be-possible-distinguish-malware-traffic-using-tls/

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