Reading Time: 5 minutes
UPDATE AND CORRECTION: Konica Minolta C224e is not sending you dangerous phishing emails. Malicious hackers have created an email and file designed to look like a legitimate scanned document from a Konica Minolta C224e, however, the file does not come from a Konica Minolta C224e and does not contain a scanned document. You’ll want to verify the source of the email.
It’s been a busy August and September for the Comodo Threat Intelligence Lab, including a blockbuster discovery about Equifax’s senior security and IT “leaders”
and discovery of 2 new ransomware phishing attacks in August (-more on those later).
The latest exclusive is the Lab’s discovery of a late September wave of new ransomware phishing attacks, building on attacks first discovered by the Comodo Threat Intelligence Lab this summer. This newest campaign mimics your organization’s vendors and even your trusty office copier/scanner/printer from industry leader Konica Minolta. It uses social engineering to engage victims and is carefully designed to slip past machine learning algorithm-based tools from leading cybersecurity vendors, infect your machines, encrypt their data, and extract a bitcoin ransom. Here is the ransom demand screen seen by victims in the September 18-21, 2017 attacks:
This new wave of ransomware attacks uses a botnet of zombie computers (usually connected to network through well-known ISPs) to coordinate a phishing attack which sends the emails to victim accounts. As with the IKARUSdilapidated attacks in early and late August 2017 respectively, this campaign utilizes a “Locky” ransomware payload.
The larger of the two attacks in this latest Locky Ransomware wave is presented as a scanned document emailed to you from your organization’s scanner/printer (but is actually from an outside hacker-controller machine). Employees today scan original documents at the company scanner/printer and email them to themselves and others as a standard practice, so this malware-laden email looks quite innocent but is anything but harmless (and most definitely is not from your organization’s Konica Minolta copier/scanner). How harmless? See the below email.
One element of the sophistication here is that the hacker-sent email includes the scanner/printer model number that belongs to the Konica Minolta C224e, one of the most popular models among business scanner/printers, commonly used in European, South American, North American, Asian and other global markets.
Both campaigns started on September 18, 2017 and appear to have effectively ended on September 21, 2017 but we should all expect similar attacks in the near future.
The encrypted documents in both new September attacks have a “.ykcol” extension and the “.vbs” files are distributed via email. This shows that malware authors are developing and changing methods to reach more users and bypass security approaches which use machine learning and pattern recognition.
Here is a heat map of the first new attack on September 18, 2017, featuring the “Message from KM_C224e” subject line followed by the source countries of the machines used in the botnet to send the emails:
|Country||Sum – Count Of Emails|
ISPs in general were co-opted heavily in this attack which points to both the sophistication of the attack and inadequate cyber-defense at their endpoints and with their own network and website security solutions. As with the August attacks, many servers and devices in Vietnam and Mexico were utilized to execute the global attacks. Here are the leading range owners detected in the “Message from KM_C224e” attack:
|Range Owner||Sum – Count Of Emails|
|Vietnam Posts and elecommunications(VNPT)||18,824|
|Cablemas Telecomunicaciones SA de CV||2,697|
|Cablevision S.A de.C.V||2,207|
The smaller of the 2 prongs in this September campaign sends phishing emails with the subject, “Status of invoice” and appears to be from a local vendor, even including a greeting of “Hello,” a polite request to view the attachment, and a signature and contact details from a fictitious vendor employee. Again, notice how familiar the email looks to
anyone involved with finance or working with any outside vendors:
When the attachment is clicked it appears as a compressed file to be unpacked:
Here you can see a sample of the scripting, which is quite different than that used in the attacks earlier in August 2017.
The ransom demand range of .5 bitcoins to 1 bitcoin in both new cases mirrors that of the August attacks. On September 18th, 2017 the value of 1 bitcoin equaled just over $4000.00 US Dollars (and 3467.00 Euros).
For the September 18, 2017 attack featuring the “Status of invoice” subject line, the Americas, Europe, India and Southeast Asia were impacted heavily, but Africa, Australia and many, islands were also hit by these attacks.
The phishing and Trojan experts from the Comodo Threat Intelligence Lab (part of Comodo Threat Research Labs) detected and analyzed more than 110,000 instances of phishing emails at Comodo-protected endpoints within just the first three days of this September 2017 campaign.
The attachments were read at Comodo-protected endpoints as “unknown files,” put into containment, and denied entry until they were analyzed by Comodo’s technology and, in this case, the lab’s human experts.
The Lab’s analysis of emails sent in the “Message from KM_C224e” phishing campaign revealed this attack data: 19,886 different IP addresses being used from 139 different country code top-level domains.
The “Status of invoice” attack utilized 12,367 different IP addresses from 142 country code domains. There are a total of 255 top level country code domains maintained by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), meaning both of these new attacks targeted over half of the nation states on earth.
“These types of attacks utilize both botnets of servers and individuals’ PCs and new phishing techniques using social engineering for unsuspecting office workers and managers. This enables a very small team of hackers to infiltrate thousands of organizations and beat A.I. and machine learning-dependent endpoint protection tools, even those leading in Gartner’s recent Magic Quadrant.” said Fatih Orhan, head of the Comodo Threat Intelligence Lab and Comodo Threat Research Labs (CTRL). “Because the new ransomware appears as an unknown file, it takes a 100% ‘default deny’ security posture to block or contain it at the endpoint or network boundary; it also requires human eyes and analysis to ultimately determine what it is- in this case, new ransomware.”
Want a deeper dive into the attack data? Check the new Comodo Threat Intelligence Lab’s “SPECIAL REPORT: SEPTEMBER 2017 – RANSOMWARE PHISHING ATTACKS LURE EMPLOYEES, BEAT MACHINE LEARNING TOOLS (Part III of the Evolving IKARUSdilapidated and Locky Ransomware Series).” The Special Report is one of many included with a free subscription to Lab Updates at https://comodo.com/lab. It provides in-depth coverage of the September 18-21, 2017 wave of attacks, with more analysis and with appendices that include more detail on the sources and machines used in the attacks. Your Lab Updates subscription also includes Parts I and II of the “Special Report: IKARUSdilapidated Locky Ransomware” series and also provides you with the Lab’s “Weekly Update” and “Special Update” videos. Subscribe today at comodo.com/lab.
Three of the Major Threats to Application Security and How to Mitigate Them
With the increased dependency of our lives on the internet and mobile apps, application security is important, now more than ever.
The importance of applications in our lives cannot be overemphasized. We depend on them for everything from dating to banking and from bookkeeping to private messaging.
To give you an idea of just how essential applications are in our lives, 105 billion applications were downloaded in 2018. The number has increased by more than 25 percent over the last two years.
That means one thing, applications are here to stay for quite a bit of time. And if they do have to be a part of our life, they better be secure.
You cannot make anything secure unless you don’t know what exactly you are securing it against. For that matter, we’ll have a look at some of the common security threats applications are facing. Then we’ll see how they can be mitigated.
Major Application Security Threats
There are more application threats than can be covered in any blog post of reasonable dimensions. We’ve picked the most common threats to give you an idea of what you need to steer clear of as a developer or a user.
Brute Force Hacking
This is the most primitive and perhaps the rawest method of hacking into a secure environment. As the name suggests, these attacks rely on the use of force to break into an application.
The way this is done is simple. A hacker programs a computer to try all possible combinations of letters, symbols, and numerals to guess a password.
Definitely, that takes the computer quite a bit of time to crack the password but given enough time it can do that every single time.
As of now, there are no active defenses to stop or prevent such an attack. There are some measures that can minimize the possibility.
How to Avoid Brute Force Hacking?
There are two things that can secure an application against a brute force attack:
- The use of a strong password that has a long combination of letters, numbers, and symbols in it.
- Limiting the number of login attempts allowed from an IP address within a certain period of time.
Another common form of attacks on applications is injection attacks. The target of such attacks is mostly the web-based applications that run on data provided by the user.
The way these attacks work is by “injecting” data into the application that compromises the security of the system from within.
The most common types of injection hacking attacks include cross-site scripting, code injection, and SQL injection attacks.
These are the attacks where the attackers inject malicious scripts into a trusted application. This causes the application to execute these scripts and behave in a way that exposes sensitive information about the users.
Code Injection Attacks
In these attacks, the hackers compromise the application by injecting malicious code into it. When executed, these codes can prevent the application from properly working.
These attacks involve injecting the application with malicious SQL codes. This makes it possible for the hackers to remotely control the application and access the sensitive data in its databases.
How to Prevent Injection Hacking?
Unlike brute force hacking, injection hacking can be prevented. Here are some precautionary measures that can secure applications against such attacks:
- Enforce strict access criteria for getting into the app.
- Put in place strong screening measures for all the data entered by the users into the app.
Malware is probably the single largest threat not only to application security but to the computer systems as a whole.
This is mainly because of the sheer amount of new malware coming to the market every year. It is estimated that as many as 317 million new computer viruses and malware were created in 2018 alone.
The effects of malware differ from one to another but once they have infected an application they can:
- Allow the cybercriminals to make illegal backdoors into the application.
- Give unauthorized access to the application.
- Result in massive data breaches and privacy compromise.
How to Prevent Malware Attacks
As new malware is coming to the scene every day, there cannot be a singular solution to this problem. However, application security against malware can be improved by:
- Putting strong antivirus and firewalls in place.
- Releasing security patches for the application as and when a new threat is revealed.
- Scanning the app for vulnerabilities and fixing them.
While all these measures are to secure applications against specific attacks, there are some things that need to be made a part of the app development process in order to make the apps safer.
Making the Development Environment Secure
It goes without saying that it is of paramount importance for the developers to make the applications secure. However, just like it is very difficult to proofread what you have written, it is an ego-shattering thing to enforce application security measures.
A recent study has shown that as much as 83% of developers globally release their apps without implementing proper security measures.
Here are some things that every developer needs to do to ensure application security:
- Applications must be developed in accordance with the security standards of the industry leaders and regulators.
- Updates and patches must regularly be released to cope with the ever-lurking threat of malware.
- All the open-source components of the application must be regulated and made at par with the application security standards being followed.
However, it is not just up to the developers to ensure application security. Application users also need to play their part to make sure that the applications they use and the data they have are safe. The things that the users can do include:
- The use of long and mixed passwords that are hard to guess even for a computer.
- Install a firewall on their devices.
- Don’t download any application from an untrusted source.
- Keep their credentials safe.
Fintechs are ransomware targets. Here are 9 ways to prevent it.
Cybercriminals are clever, and they often target fintechs for two reasons. They know fintechs handle a lot of sensitive and financial information on a daily basis, and that they probably have the means to meet hackers’ demands and get back to business as usual.
Ransomware attacks are one of the most common fintech cybersecurity risks, and falling victim to one can be devastating — or disruptive at the very least. So, we asked the experts at ESET to explain how to prevent ransomware, and secure your business from the inside out.
Firstly, what is ransomware and how does it work?
With a ransomware attack, a cybercriminal hacks into their victim’s systems and essentially holds their data “hostage” until they pay a ransom. Since hackers know how valuable data is to a business, they tend to set ransoms in the thousands or even millions of dollars.
There are two types of attacks: crypto ransomware encrypts all the files, folders and hard drives on the infected computer, while locker ransomware locks users out of their devices. For cybercriminals, the goal is to get you to pay up so you can retrieve your files and mitigate any damage to your business.
What to do after a ransomware attack
Unfortunately, you don’t have too many options if you fall victim to a ransomware attack. You’ll need to decide to pay the ransom or not, and that involves weighing up how much your data is worth. Just keep in mind that giving in to a cybercriminal’s demands may encourage them to attack you again — and there’s no guarantee that your data will be restored.
Either way, it’s important to go into disaster recovery mode right away. Follow these steps for what to do if you get ransomware:
1. Alert your IT department. If your company has IT professionals or a Chief Information Security Officer, notify them about the attack. Hopefully, they’ll have a plan of actions for situations like these and be able to guide your team through these steps.
2. Trace the source of the attack. Most ransomware attacks have a countdown clock before all your files are deleted forever, so the sooner you find the source, the faster you can act. Typically, ransomware sneaks its way into your system through a malicious link or email attachment. The best-case scenario is the ransomware only attacks that one device, and the worst-case is it infects your entire system. Once you’ve found the culprit, ask the user if they’ve opened other suspicious emails or noticed anything weird about their computer.
3. Remove that device from your network. To stop the ransomware from spreading through your network, you’ll need to unplug the infected device.
4. Let your employees and clients know about the breach. While it’s important not to cause panic, you do need to be transparent. The truth is, most cyber breaches are the result of human error, so your employees need to know what happened and what’s expected of them. As for your clients or customers, contact them if you have proof their data has been compromised. In other words, avoid putting out a statement until you have all the information.
5. Invest in better security systems. When you’ve gotten through the aftermath, look into more sophisticated cybersecurity in fintech practices.
9 ways to prevent ransomware attacks
Ransomware is incredibly common, and as you now know, there are limited ways to deal with an attack. You need to be proactive and prepared, and implement measures to prevent an attack.
As you might have guessed, fintech cybersecurity should be a priority. These are our tips for how to protect against ransomware:
Set up sophisticated email filters. The majority of ransomware is delivered by spam or phishing emails. To stop ransomware before it has a chance to infect your systems, employ email filters that scan all email content for spam, viruses and other forms of malware.
Run regular security audits. It’s worth assessing your security systems to identify any gaps or weaknesses. If you can, consider outsourcing your cybersecurity, reallocating resources or hiring in-house professionals to give your fintech peace of mind.
Use an up-to-date antivirus and anti-ransomware software. To protect your company devices from ransomware, malware, identity theft and more, install a third-party antivirus software designed for businesses. ESET Digital Security for Business offers the best ransomware protection and defence against a range of advanced cyber threats, and can be tailored to the size and scope of your fintech. Along with blocking persistent threats, it secures your devices with endpoint protection, which is especially handy if you have employees who work remotely.
Accept all software updates. Cybersecurity companies often release new patches to fix bugs and address vulnerabilities, which is why it’s essential to stay on top of any updates. In other words, you could have the most sophisticated antivirus ransomware software in the world, but that won’t do you any good if you ignore every notification that pops up! Updates usually take a few minutes to download and require you to restart your computer, but they make your company much less vulnerable to ransomware.
Implement multi-factor authentication. Two-factor authentication is good, but multi-factor authentication is better. This means employees will need to enter their username, password and one more piece of additional information — usually a code sent to their phone or email — before they can log into the system. It also makes it harder for hackers to break in.
Create a whitelisting program. This is effective in preventing ransomware, and it involves restricting the applications that can run within your company’s system. Think of it as the opposite of blacklisting — only applications that have passed the approval process will work.
Encrypt your company files. Ideally, all of your data should be end-to-end encrypted, and access limited to the people who need that information to do their jobs. The good news is, most computers and phones have built-in operating systems that encrypt stored data and prevent unauthorised users.
Tighten your cloud security. Speaking of the cloud, some cloud services don’t offer secure encryption and can’t distinguish between authorised users and other people trying to access the cloud. ESET Cloud Office Security will configure your cloud security so hackers can’t bypass your company’s policies and tap into sensitive information.
Routinely back up your data and systems. By backing up your data regularly, you’ll be able to recover any lost or corrupted data if your server crashes or if you fall victim to a ransomware attack. We recommend always having two encrypted backups: one on the cloud, and one an external hard drive.
Get in touch with ESET today!
What are Insecure Direct Object References (IDOR)?
HackerOne empowers the world to build a safer internet.
Insecure Direct Object References (or IDOR) is a simple bug that packs a punch. When exploited, it can provide attackers with access to sensitive data or passwords or give them the ability to modify information. On HackerOne, over 200 are found and safely reported to customers every month.
What is an IDOR?
There are several types of IDOR attacks, including:
- Body Manipulation, in which attackers modify the value of a checkbox, radio buttons, APIs, and form fields to access information from other users with ease.
- URL Tampering, in which the URL is modified at the client’s end by tweaking the parameters in the HTTP request.
- HTTP Requests in which IDOR vulnerabilities are typically found in GET, POST, PUT, and DELETE verbs.
- Mass Assignment, where a record pattern can be abused to modify data that the user should not be able to access. While not always a result of IDOR vulnerabilities, there are many powerful examples of this being the result of it.
In its simplest and most common form, an IDOR vulnerability arises when the only input required to access or replace content is from the user. This vulnerability submitted to Shopify by California-based hacker Rojan Rijal (a.k.a. @rijalrojan) in 2018 is the perfect example.
By observing how file attachments were labeled when sending a query to Shopify’s Exchange Marketplace application, Rojan was able to replace documents by leveraging the same file name from different accounts.
Figure 1: IDOR vulnerability reported by @rijalrojan to Shopify on the HackerOne platform.
For retail and ecommerce companies, IDOR vulnerabilities represent 15% of what organizations pay bounties for and represent the top vulnerability for programs across government (18%), medical technology (36%), and professional services (31%) industries.
If they’re so simple, why are they so common?
In short, IDORs can not be detected by tools alone.
IDORs require creativity and manual security testing to identify them. They require you to understand the business context of the target application. While some scanners might detect activity, it takes a human eye to analyze, evaluate, and interpret. Understanding the deeper context is an innately human skill that machines cannot replicate. In traditional pentests, unless a pentester tests every possible parameter in every request endpoint, these vulnerabilities can go undetected.
What are the implications of an IDOR vulnerability?
Perhaps the most infamous IDOR vulnerability as of late is that found in alt-tech social media platform Parler. The company ordered their posts by number in the URL, a telltale sign of IDOR. If you add a sequential digit to a Parler post URL, you could access the next post on the platform indefinitely. Without authentication or access limits, an attacker could easily build a program to download every post, photo, video, and data from the entire site. While this was just public posts (not necessarily IDs used to verify accounts), geolocation data from posts was also downloaded, which could reveal GPS coordinates of users’ homes.
How can you prevent IDORs from cropping up?
“Avoiding IDOR is only possible by building a robust access control mechanism, choosing the best fit methodology for your scenario, log all access and if possible do an audit with a post authorization check,” said HackerOne hacker Manoel Abreu Netto, better known online as @manoelt.
“However, if you want to reduce the impact of an IDOR, avoid using a simple pattern to reference objects in the backend, thus not using a sequential integer value but something like uuid or even a MAC (hashed ID) with a salt per user session.
This does not eliminate the IDOR, but reduces the overall impact and the ability to enumerate objects.”
To remediate IDOR vulnerabilities, below are a few best practices.
- Developers should avoid displaying private object references such as keys or file names.
- Validation of parameters should be properly implemented.
- Verification of all the referenced objects should be checked.
- Tokens should be generated in such a way that it can only be mapped to the user and is not public.
- Ensure that queries are scoped to the owner of the resource.
- Avoid things like using UUIDs (Universally unique identifier) over Sequential IDs as UUIDs often let IDOR vulnerabilities go undetected.
For more information about reducing risk and getting started with hacker-powered security, check out our CISOs Guide to Deriving Value from Hacker-Powered Security.
Create your free account to unlock your custom reading experience.
80% of Global Enterprises Report Firmware Cyberattacks
COD Mobile Season 3 Tokyo Escape
Capcom Reveals Ransomware Hack Came from Old VPN
Pokémon GO announces new event to celebrate new Pokémon Snap
FinSS and Salt Edge partner for CDR Compliance solution in Australia
PSA: CSGO Fans Beware, Unfixed Steam Invite Hack Could Take Over Your PC.
How to factory reset a PS4
xQc Loses 2 Million Followers at Once on Twitch
Guild Esports to Emulate 100 Thieves With Merch Drops and Academy System
CSGO Free vs Paid: What’s the Difference?
Fortnite streamer Scoped joins Team Liquid Fortnite roster
Iranian Government bans Call Of Duty Mobile
CoD Pros React to The Return of CDL Lan Events in 2021
Fortnite: Team Liquid Signs Scoped To Roster
Morgana may now have League’s fastest jungle clear after buffs
Amouranth argues that Twitch success isn’t easy for women
NASCAR Partners with HBCU Schools on Heat 5 Events
Overwatch League to host Live Events in China for 2021
Riot drops hints about new tropical map Breeze coming soon
Ludwig officially breaks Ninja’s Twitch subscriber record
CSL Esports Moves into High School Esports With New Offering
Enthusiast Gaming Files SEC Registration, NASDAQ Listing to Go Live Next Week
Cloud9 White part ways with Keiti
Call of Duty: Mobile World Championship to Feature $2M Prize Pool
Why Activision Filed a Warzone Trademark Lawsuit Against an Indie Developer
BLAST Premier Showdown Day 2: Gambit conquer, Extra Salt eliminated
AI-Driven Overwatch Power Rankings Coming From IBM
Ludwig’s historic 31-day subathon stream: final numbers
DWG KIA LoL Worlds Skins In-Game Models Unveiled
Call of Duty League confirms the return of offline events
Ninja’s Response to Ludwig Breaking His Twitch Sub Record
Esports3 days ago
chessbae removed as moderator from Chess.com amid drama
Esports1 week ago
Valorant Redeem Codes: How to redeem?
Esports1 week ago
Dota 2 Patch 7.29 Will Reveal a New Hero
Esports1 week ago
Will Operation Broken Fang’s case and skins be discontinued?
Esports1 week ago
Pokemon GO announces details for Rivals Week
Esports2 days ago
DreamHack Online Open Ft. Fortnite April Edition – How To Register, Format, Dates, Prize Pool & More
Esports1 week ago
The five most shocking roster moves in CSGO history
Esports1 week ago
Drift0r Opens Up About Harassment By Eight Thoughts
Blockchain1 week ago
Wall Street-Riese BNY Mellon über das Bitcoin Stock to Flow-Model: „Mehr Kunst als Wissenschaft“
Blockchain1 week ago
MicroStrategy kauft weitere 253 BTC für 15 Millionen US-Dollar
Blockchain1 week ago
Krypto-News-Roundup 5. April 2021
Fintech6 days ago
Novatti’s Ripple partnership live to The Philippines