Items tagged with Malware

Users of the popular CCleaner program by Piriform are being advised to update the application after researchers at Cisco's Talos division discovered hackers had hidden malware inside. The contaminated utility served as a beacon call for additional forms of malware—using a backdoor, an attacker could run code from a remote IP address. The threat was discovered in CCleaner 5.33 released on August 15, and CCleaner Cloud 1.07 released on August 24. According to Piriform, which is owned by security outfit Avast, the affected version of CCleaner may have been used by up to 3 percent of its userbase.... Read more...
There is some big money to be made in cryptocurrency mining, assuming the operation is large enough. That is especially true when the value of volatile digital currencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum skyrocket, as both have done in recent times. Unfortunately, there are some undesirable side effects to the cryptocurrency boom—we all know about the shortage of graphics cards, but even more troubling is that some mining groups are exploiting PCs with malware for more firepower. The situation is getting worse, according to Russian antivirus vendor Kaspersky Labs. A new report by Kaspersky claims that... Read more...
It's been an unfortunately busy few weeks for Android vulnerabilities. Earlier in the month, we wrote about SonicSpy, a grandiose piece of malware that could gain an incredible amount of control over your device - including, of course, being able to record your audio. Just last week, we followed-up with another story talking about the 500 apps Google obliterated from the Play Store that bundled an exploited ad network. Today, WireX is the name of the game, a piece of malware whose sole purpose is to turn our innocent mobile devices into a DDoSing bot network. On August 17, WireX hit many content... Read more...
The Internet of Things (IoT) sounded like a great idea at first glance when it first began picking up steam. However, the problem with giving every single gadget that we come in contact with access to the internet is that no one really thought much about security, leaving many these things vulnerable to viruses and malware. The Mirai DDoS attack taught us a valuable lesson about IoT devices with poor security practices: they can be a huge threat to networks, with attacks involving nearly a million bots. The big rub here is that many of those devices are still a threat, leaving security researchers... Read more...
Just last weekend, we wrote about SonicSpy, a grossly robust piece of malware that infected hundreds of apps on the Play Store. Google is always quick to remove this awful junk when it is detected, but the fact that we keep talking about the issue means it's not going away. It was security research firm Lookout that informed us of SonicSpy, and apparently, the company has been working overtime, as it now introduces us to yet another piece of Android maliciousness, an ad network called lgexin. This issue has impacted many apps on the Play Store, although it's not guaranteed that all of them unleashed... Read more...
A freelance security consultant and Handler at SANS Internet Storm Center has discovered a rather interesting exploit in Microsoft Word, one that allows an attacker to abuse the productivity program's ability to auto-update links. This is a feature that is enabled by default—when you add links to external sources like URLs, World with automatically update them without any prompts. Therein lies the issue. "The infection vector was classic: The document (‘N_Order#xxxxx.docx with 5 random numbers) was received as an attachment and has a VT score of 12/59 this morning. The file has an embedded link... Read more...
For a long time, Apple's Mac line of computers were thought by some users to be immune to malware and viruses. Some of that was due to hackers and nefarious sorts aiming for the low hanging fruit of the much larger Windows user base. Things have changed with Macs growing in popularity over the years and there are many different viruses and malware out there that target Mac users today. MacRansom was one of the latest bits of malware aimed at Apple fans, and now, a malware called Fruitfly is ready to wreak havoc. The malware has reportedly been making the rounds for years (perhaps... Read more...
Here's something you don't see too often: a ransomware creator unearthing the master decryption key for public consumption. That's exactly what we're seeing from Petya's original developer, allowing those affected by certain versions of Petya to recover their data, and developers the ability to create decrypters to make the entire process that much easier. Unfortunately, there are a number of major caveats here. The biggest one is the fact that most of those affected by these specific versions of Petya dealt with it last year, not recently. It stands to reason that many of those folks did not clone... Read more...
Imitation may not be the sincerest or safest form of flattery. Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. researchers just revealed that CopyCat Android malware infected 14 million devices worldwide in 2016, and eight million of these infected devices were also rooted. How was this malware so successful? According to Check Point, CopyCat has a modular structure. They noted, “This allows the malware developers to choose and change their strategy and the malware’s behavior on the device to accommodate their current target.” CopyCat mimicked popular apps that were spread through third-party distributors.... Read more...
Over the past few years, one of the most prevalent types of malware has been ransomware - an infection that automatically locks down your sensitive data, and then makes you buy it back with your hard-earned cash. In May, one of the hardest-hitting ransomware strikes occurred, via the appropriately named WannaCry. Now, that's "old" news; today, the major threat is Petya, another piece of ransomware. Or is it? That's the big question. As we covered a couple of times this week, Petya is designated as ransomware that seems to be mostly striking computers in Europe. If infected, the user is told to... Read more...
There are no days off in Redmond, at least not for Microsoft. Hot on the heels of dealing with the WannaCry ransomware outbreak, Microsoft has now addressed reports of a new ransomware making the rounds, one that shares similar code with Petya, a nasty piece of ransomware in and of itself. What makes this new strain so dangerous is that it is capable of spreading across networks like a worm. This new ransomware is more sophisticated than the original Petya outbreak. According to Microsoft, the initial strain seems to originate from a Ukrainian company that builds a pierce of accounting software... Read more...
Recent ransomware scares such as the WannaCry outbreak have collectively put a spotlight on PC security. It has even prompted Microsoft to release patches for unsupported operating systems, including Windows XP and Windows Vista. However, it is Windows 10 that receives the lion's share of Microsoft's security efforts, and we will see that on display when the Fall Creators Update arrives in a few months. Among other things, the Fall Creators Update will represent a "hardening" of the Windows platform. Security has always been a major focal point with Windows 10, but in a blog post outlining some... Read more...
Here’s the thing about most types of mobile malware in the wild; they’re avoidable. That doesn’t mean, however, if you’re not paying attention--and especially if you’re the type that likes to customize things as the Android platform is so capable of--that you might not stumble into some nasty code deplorables. Such is the case with a new, very sneaky strain of Android ad malware that has been downloaded to literally millions of devices globally, though predominantly in Southeast Asia. AndroidOS_Xavier_AXM, or Xavier for short, as it is more commonly known, is a tricky little payload that has been... Read more...
Getting on-board with an operating system like Windows 10 S may be difficult for some users. Only a certain type of user would purposefully opt to use a whittled-down, locked-down OS by choice, but for the security conscious, it makes a lot of sense. After all, 10 S is still Windows -- it's just supposed to be safer. That's been Microsoft's message since the OS' launch, and its logic is sound: the more locked-down an OS, the lower the chances are that a piece of malware -- including ransomware -- will make it onto the system. To put it simply, using Windows 10 S is akin to locking your doors... Read more...
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