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Ransomware would be much worse if it wasn't for email security solutions

The latest VBSpam test brings good news: at least 199 out of every 200 emails containing a malicious attachment were blocked by email security solutions. All of the full solutions tested achieved a VBSpam award, with five earning a VBSpam+ award.
Many experts believe that ransomware is set to become an even worse problem in 2017 than it was in 2016 — which is rather bad news, given the damage it has already done. Still,… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/01/ransomware-would-be-so-much-worse-if-it-wasnt-email-security-solutions/

VB2016 paper: Open Source Malware Lab

At VB2016, ThreatConnect Director of Research Innovation Robert Simmons presented a paper on setting up an open source malware lab. Today, we share the accompanying paper and video.
Security experts aren't necessarily known for being skilled at predicting the future, but if there's one prediction they are guaranteed to get right, it's that there will be a lot… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2017/01/vb2016-paper-open-source-malware-lab/

Paper: Spreading techniques used by malware

In a new paper published by Virus Bulletin, Acalvio researcher Abhishek Singh discusses some of the techniques used by malware to increase its impact by spreading further.
Malware infections usually start with a user opening an attachment, visiting a link, or simply accessing an infected site with a vulnerable browser. But once malware has infected… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/december/paper-spreading-techniques-used-malware/

Conference review: Botconf 2016

Three members of the Virus Bulletin team attended the Botconf 2016 conference in Lyon, France last month, enjoying talks on subjects that ranged from state-sponsored attacks to exploit kits, and from banking trojans to cyber insurance.
This review was written by Martijn Grooten, Adrian Luca and Ionuț Răileanu. Though still only in its fourth year, Botconf has become one of the Virus Bulletin team's favourite… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/december/conference-review-botconf-2016/

VB2016 preview: Cryptography mistakes in malware

At VB2016, two talks will discuss mistakes made by malware authors in cryptographic implementations. Ben Herzog and Yaniv Balmas will present a paper in which they look at a number of these mistakes, while Malwarebytes researcher hasherezade will present …
"Don't roll your own crypto", software developers are often told: cryptography is hard and thus it is always safer to use a well-tested public library rather than writing your own… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/september/vb2016-preview-presentations-cryptography-mistakes-malware/

VB2016 preview: Debugging and Monitoring Malware Network Activities with Haka

In a VB2016 paper, Stormshield researchers Benoit Ancel and Mehdi Talbi will present a paper on Haka, a tool that can be used to monitor and debug malware's network communications.
Although some inventive (and often quite impractical) non-network-based ways to remotely control malware have been presented, most botnets use the normal Internet connection of… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/september/vb2016-preview-debugging-and-monitoring-malware-network-activities-haka/

Paper: Behavioural Detection and Prevention of Malware on OS X

In a new paper published through Virus Bulletin, Vincent Van Mieghem presents a novel method for detecting malware on Mac OS X, based on the system calls used by malicious software.
Though still well behind that of Windows malware, the prevalence of malware targeting OS X has increased in the past year to the point where Mac users can't assume they are safe… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/september/paper-behavioural-detection-and-prevention-malware-os-x/

Paper: The Journey of Evasion Enters Behavioural Phase

A new paper by FireEye researcher Ankit Anubhav provides an overview of evasion techniques applied by recently discovered malware.
Anti-detection techniques are almost as old as malware itself and have developed well beyond hash busting techniques. As security products adapt their detection tools, malware… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/07/paper-journey-evasion-enters-behavioural-phase/

Paper: How It Works: Steganography Hides Malware in Image Files

A new paper by CYREN researcher Lordian Mosuela takes a close look at Gatak, or Stegoloader, a piece of malware that was discovered last year and that is controlled via malicious code embedded in a PNG image, a technique known as steganography.
Sometimes a picture says more than a thousand words. And sometimes in computer security, a picture contains a thousand words, or rather a lot of commands, used by malware authors… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/04/paper-how-it-works-steganography-hides-malware-image-files/

Paying a malware ransom is bad, but telling people never to do it is unhelpful advice

The current ransomware plague is one of the worst threats the Internet has seen and it is unlikely to go away any time soon. But telling people to never pay the ransom is unhelpful advice.
I'm not usually one to spread panic about security issues, but in the case of the current ransomware plague, I believe that at the very least a sense of great concern is… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/04/paying-malware-ransom-bad-telling-people-never-do-it-unhelpful-advice/

New tool helps ransomware victims indentify the malware family

The people behind the MalwareHunterTeam have released a tool that helps victims of ransomware identify which of more than 50 families has infected their system, something which could help them find a tool to decrypt their files.
Malware infections are never fun, but ransomware is particularly nasty and the plague doesn't seem likely to cease any time soon: new families are spotted almost daily. A small… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/04/new-tool-helps-ransomware-victims-indentify-malware-family/

VB2015 paper: Will Android Trojans, Worms or Rootkits Survive in SEAndroid and Containerization?

Sophos researchers Rowland Yu and William Lee look at whether recent security enhancements to Android, such as SEAndroid and containerization, will be enough to defeat future malware threats.
Google's Android operating system may have a bit of a bad reputation when it comes to security, but it's worth noting that recent versions of the operating system have been… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/02/vb2015-paper-will-android-trojans-worms-or-rootkits-survive-seandroid-and-containerization/

VB2015 paper: Digital 'Bian Lian' (face changing): the Skeleton Key malware

Microsoft, Dell SecureWorks researchers analyse malware targeting Active Directory servers.
Microsoft, Dell SecureWorks researchers analyse malware targeting Active Directory servers. A year ago, researchers from Dell SecureWorks discovered a new kind of malware, dubbed… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/01/paper-digital-bian-lian-face-changing-skeleton-key-malware/

Malware likely cause of power cut in Ukraine

BlackEnergy malware previously linked to targeted attacks in the country.
BlackEnergy malware previously linked to targeted attacks in the country. When in late December hundreds of thousands of homes in Western Ukraine suffered power outages, many… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2016/01/malware-likely-cause-power-cut-ukraine/

Paper: Optimizing ssDeep for use at scale

Brian Wallace presents tool to optimize ssDeep comparisons.
Brian Wallace presents tool to optimize ssDeep comparisons. Malware rarely comes as a single file, and to avoid having to analyse each sample in a set individually, a fuzzy hashing… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2015/11/paper-optimizing-ssdeep-use-scale/

Paper: MWI-5: Operation HawkEye

Gabor Szappanos looks at how macro malware campaigns spread a commercial keylogger to harvest banking details.
Gabor Szappanos looks at how macro malware campaigns spread a commercial keylogger to harvest banking details. Macro malware was a plague in the late 1990s, when Microsoft Office… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2015/10/paper-mwi-5-operation-hawkeye/

Researchers seek ransomware samples for their generic solution

VB2015 presentation to include demonstration of technique against recent samples.
VB2015 presentation to include demonstration of technique against recent samples. 'The scary hack that's on the rise' is how Wired's Kim Zetter described ransomware in an overview… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2015/09/researchers-seek-ransomware-samples-their-generic-solution/

Paper: Not a GAMe maKER

Raul Alvarez performs low-level analysis of information-stealing trojan.
Raul Alvarez performs low-level analysis of information-stealing trojan. The Gamker information-stealing trojan (also known as Shiz) has been around for a few years. It made the… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2015/08/paper-not-game-maker/

Back to the future: anti-virus engines and sandboxes

Szilard Stange makes the case for multi-engine malware scanning.
Szilard Stange makes the case for multi-engine malware scanning.The VB2015 conference takes place next month (30 September to 2 October) in Prague, with an exciting programme that… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2015/08/back-future-anti-virus-engines-and-sandboxes/

Paper: Dridex in the Wild

Meng Su explains how Dridex works and how it communicates with its C&C server.
Meng Su explains how Dridex works and how it communicates with its C&C server. A descendant of Cridex, Dridex was first written about a little less than a year ago, by S21sec and… https://www.virusbulletin.com/blog/2015/07/paper-dridex-wild/

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