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Showing posts with label Mirai botnet. Show all posts

FortiGuard Labs: Evolving RapperBot IoT Malware Detected

Since June, FortiGuard Labs has been monitoring the "RapperBot" family of revolving IoT malware. Although the original Mirai source code was greatly influenced by this family, it differs from other IoT malware families in that it has the capacity to brute force credentials and connect to SSH servers rather than Telnet, which was how Mirai implemented it. 

The malware is alleged to have gathered a series of hacked SSH servers, with over 3,500 distinct IP addresses used to scan and brute-force its way into the servers. The malware is named from an encoded URL to a YouTube rap music video in an early draft.

Analysis of the malware

According to the Fortinet analysis, the majority of the malware code implements an SSH 2.0 client that can connect to and brute force any SSH server that supports Diffie-Hellmann key exchange with 768-bit or 2048-bit keys and data encryption using AES128-CTR.

RapperBot turned out to be a Mirai fork with unique features, its own command and control (C2) protocol, and unusual post-compromise for a botnet. RapperBot was created to target ARM and MIPS and has limited DDoS capabilities.

The attempt to create durability on the compromised host, which effectively allows the hacker to keep ongoing access long after the malware has been uninstalled or the unit has been restarted, serves as further proof of how Mirai has deviated from its usual behavior.

RapperBot used a self-propagation technique via a remote binary downloader, which was eliminated by the hackers in mid-July, as per Fortinet researchers who watched the bot and proceeded to sample new variants.

The recent versions in circulation at the time included a shell command that switched the victim's SSH keys for the hackers. A unique file named "/.ssh/authorized keys" is used to get access by inserting the operators' SSH public key. This enables the attacker to log in and authenticate to the server using the associated private key without providing a password.

The root user "suhelper" is added by the bot to the compromised endpoints in the most recent samples that the researchers have examined. The bot also sets up a Cron job to add the user again every hour if an administrator finds the account and deletes it.


As per Fortinet, analysts observed no new post-compromise payloads transmitted during the monitoring time, so the virus simply lays dormant on the affected Linux systems. 

Despite the botnet abandoning self-propagation in favor of persistence, it is said that the botnet underwent substantial alterations in a short period of time, the most notable of which being the removal of DDoS attack elements from the artifacts at one point, only to be reinstated a week later.

At best, the campaign's ultimate goals are still unclear, and little more action is taken after a successful compromise. It is evident that SSH servers with pre-configured or easily guessable credentials are being gathered into a botnet for some unknown future use.

Users should set secure passwords for their devices or, turn off password authentication for SSH to protect themselves from such attacks.

The Fodcha DDoS Botnet Hits Over 100 Victims


Qihoo 360 researchers have found a rapidly spreading new botnet called Fodcha which is capable of performing over 100 attacks every day. Employing this new malware, the threat actor is attacking routers, DVRs, and servers. The actors were able to infect nearly 62,000 machines with the Fodcha virus in less than a month, as per the researchers. 

360 Netlab reports that the number of unique IP addresses affiliated with the botnet fluctuates, as they are monitoring a 10,000-strong Fodcha army of bots utilizing Chinese IP addresses every day, with the majority of them using China Unicom (59.9%) and China Telecom (59.9%) services (39.4 percent ). 

Researchers alleged that "Based on firsthand data from the security industry with whom we collaborated, the frequency of live bots is more than 56000." "The global infection appears to be quite large, as there are over 10,000 daily active bots (IPs) in China, as well as over 100 DDoS victims are targeted daily." 

The Fodcha infects devices by exploiting n-day vulnerabilities in many devices and employing the Crazyfia brute-force cracking tool. The botnet targets a variety of devices and services, including but not limited to: 

RCE for Android ADB Debug Server 
CVE-2021-22205 on GitLab 
CVE-2021-35394 in the Realtek Jungle SDK 
JAWS Webserver unverified shell command execution on MVPower DVR 
TOTOLINK Routers: Backdoor TOTOLINK Routers
ZHONE Router: Web RCE ZHONE Router 

After successfully acquiring access to susceptible Internet-exposed devices samples, Fodcha attackers use Crazyfia result data to deploy malware payload. The botnet samples, according to 360 Netlab, target MIPS, MPSL, ARM, x86, and other CPU platforms. 

The botnet used the folded[.]in command-and-control (C2) domain from January 2022 until March 19, when it switched to fridgexperts[.]cc when the cloud vendor took down the essential C2 domain. 

"The switch from v1 to v2 is due to a cloud vendor shutting down the C2 servers corresponding to the v1 version, leaving Fodcha's operators with no alternative but to re-launch v2 and upgrade C2," the researchers reported. "The new C2 is mapped to over a dozen IP addresses and is scattered across different countries, including the United States, Korea, Japan, and India." It also includes more cloud providers, including Amazon, DediPath, DigitalOcean, Linode, and others. 

Due to New Router Flaws, Beastmode Botnet Has a Greater DDoS Potential


Beastmode (or B3astmode), a Mirai-based decentralized denial-of-service (DDoS) botnet, has extended its list of exploits to include three new ones, all of which target various models of Totolink devices.

Totolink is a well-known electronics sub-brand of Zioncom which recently published firmware patches to address three critical-severity flaws. DDoS botnet programmers wasted little time in adding these holes to their arsenal to take advantage of the window of opportunity before Totolink router customers installed the security patches. Beastmode has gained control of vulnerable routers, giving it access to hardware resources it can use to execute DDoS attacks.

The following is a list of vulnerabilities in TOTOLINK routers: 

  • CVE-2022-26210 (CVSS 9.8) - A command injection vulnerability that could be used to execute arbitrary code. 
  • CVE-2022-26186 is a vulnerability that affects computers (CVSS score: 9.8) TOTOLINK N600R and A7100RU routers are vulnerable to a command injection vulnerability. 
  • CVE-2022-25075 to CVE-2022-25084 (CVE-2022-25075 to CVE-2022-25084) (CVSS scores: 9.8) - A buffer overflow vulnerability has been discovered in certain TOTOLINK routers, resulting in code execution.  

CVE-2021-4045 is used to target the TP-Link Tapo C200 IP camera, which the researchers haven't seen in any other Mirai-based campaign. For the time being, the exploit has been implemented incorrectly and does not operate. "Device users must still update its camera software to correct this issue," the researchers suggest, citing indications of continued development. 

Although the flaws affect different devices, they all have the same effect: they allow the attacker to insert commands to download shell scripts via the wget command and infect the device with Beastmode. The shell scripts differ depending on which devices have been infected and which exploit has been used.

The vulnerabilities were not the only ones introduced to the Beastmode botnet; its creators also added the following previous bugs:

D-Link is affected by CVE-2021-45382, a remote code execution bug. DIR-810L, DIR-820L/LW, DIR-826L, DIR-830L, and DIR-836L are the DIR-810L, DIR-820L/LW, DIR-826L, DIR-830L, and DIR-836L. 
  • CVE-2021-4045 — Unauthenticated remote code execution bug in the TP-Link Tapo C200 IP camera. 
  • CVE-2017-17215 —  Unauthenticated remote code execution problem in Huawei HG532
  • CVE-2016-5674 — Remote execution of arbitrary PHP code through the log argument in the Netgear ReadyNAS product line.
Ensure to deploy the available security updates which correct the vulnerabilities mentioned above to prevent Mirai versions from seizing control of any router or IoT devices. Totolink users should go to the vendor's download center, choose the device model, and download and install the most recent firmware version available. 

A slow internet connection is one of the symptoms if your router has been exploited. Additional indicators include the device heating up more than usual, inability to get into the administration panel, changing settings, or an unresponsive device, which a typical user is likely to overlook.

Log4Shell Utilized for Crypto Mining and Botnet Creation


The serious problem in Apache's widely used Log4j project, known as Log4Shell, hasn't caused the calamity predicted, but it is still being exploited, primarily from cloud servers in the United States. Because it was reasonably straightforward to exploit and since the Java application logging library is implemented in many different services, the Log4Shell vulnerability was brought to attention as it raised concerns for being potentially abused by attackers. 

According to a Barracuda study, the targeting of Log4Shell has fluctuated over the last few months, but the frequency of exploitation attempts has remained pretty stable. Barracuda discovered the majority of exploitation attempts originated in the United States, followed by Japan, Central Europe, and Russia. 

Researchers discovered the Log4j version 2.14.1 in December 2021. Reportedly, all prior versions were vulnerable to CVE-2021-44228, also known as "Log4Shell," a significant zero-day remote code execution bug.

Log4j's creator, Apache, attempted to fix the problem by releasing version 2.15.0. However, the vulnerabilities and security flaws prolonged the patching race until the end of every year, when version 2.17.1 ultimately fixed all issues. 

Mirai malware infiltrates a botnet of remotely managed bots by targeting publicly outed network cameras, routers, and other devices. The threat actor can then use this botnet to launch DDoS assaults on a single target, exhausting its resources and disrupting any online services. The malicious actors behind these operations either rent vast botnet firepower to others or undertake DDoS attacks to extort money from businesses. Other payloads which have been discovered as a result of current Log4j exploitation include: 

  • Malware is known as BillGates (DDoS)
  • Kinsing is a term used to describe the act of (cryptominer) 
  • XMRig XMRig XMRig X (cryptominer) 
  • Muhstik Muhstik Muhstik (DDoS) 

The payloads range from harmless online jokes to crypto-mining software, which utilizes another person's computers to solve equations and earn the attacker cryptocurrency like Monero. 

The simplest method to protect oneself from these attacks is to update Log4j to version 2.17.1 or later, and to maintain all of the web apps up to date. Even if the bulk of threat actors lose interest, some will continue to target insecure Log4j deployments since the numbers are still significant. 

Security updates have been applied to valuable firms which were lucrative targets for ransomware assaults, but neglected systems running earlier versions are good targets for crypto mining and DDoS attacks.

DDoS Assaults on Ukrainian Banking Elite has Resumed Yet Again

Cyberattacks took down Ukrainian official and bank websites, prompting the government to declare a statewide state of emergency amid growing fears that Russian President Vladimir Putin could launch a full-scale military invasion of Ukraine. The websites of Privatbank (Ukraine's largest bank) and Oschadbank (the State Savings Bank) were also blasted in the onslaught and brought down Ukrainian government sites as well, according to Internet monitor NetBlocks. 

"At around 4 p.m., another massive DDoS attack on the state commenced. We have relevant data from several banks," stated Mykhailo Fedorov, Minister of Digital Transformation, who also mentioned the parliament website had been hacked. Hackers were prepared to conduct big attacks on government organizations, banks, and the defense sector, as Ukrainian authorities said earlier this week. 

SSSCIP and other national cybersecurity authorities in Ukraine are currently "working on countering the assaults, gathering and evaluating information." According to the Computer Emergency Response Team of Ukraine (CERT-UA), the attackers used DDoS-as-a-Service platforms and numerous bot networks, including Mirai and Meris, to carry out the DDoS attacks on February 15th. The DDoS attacks were traced to Russia's Main Directorate of the General Staff of the Armed Forces on the same day, according to the White House. 

"We have technical information indicating ties the Russian main intelligence directorate, or GRU," Deputy National Security Advisor for Cyber Anne Neuberger stated. "Known GRU infrastructure was spotted delivering huge volumes of communication to Ukraine-based IP addresses and domains." 

Neuberger went on to say as, despite the "limited impact," the strikes can be considered as "setting the framework" for more disruptive attacks, which could coincide with a possible invasion of Ukraine's territory. 

The UK government also blamed Russian GRU hackers for the DDoS strikes last week which targeted Ukrainian military and state-owned bank websites. Following a press release from Ukraine's Security Service (SSU), which also had its website hacked, the country was attacked by a "huge wave of hybrid warfare." The SSU announced earlier this month so, during January 2022, it stopped over 120 cyberattacks aimed at Ukrainian governmental entities.

Log4j Attack Target SolarWinds and ZyXEL


According to reports published by Microsoft and Akamai, cybercriminals are targeting SolarWinds devices with the Log4Shell vulnerability, and ZyXEL is known to use the Log4j library in their software.

Attacks have been reported on SolarWinds and ZyXEL devices using the log4j library, according to Microsoft and Akamai reports. CVE-2021-35247 has been assigned to the vulnerability, which has been paired with a zero-day in the SolarWinds Serv-U file-sharing service.

According to Microsoft's Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC), the SolarWinds vulnerability, dubbed CVE-2021-35247, is a data validation hole that might allow attackers to compose a query based on some data and send it across the network without sanitizing. 

Jonathan Bar-Or, a Microsoft security researcher, is credited with identifying the flaw, which affects Serv-U versions 15.2.5 and earlier. In Serv-U version 15.3, SolarWinds patched the vulnerability. "A closer look helped discover the feed Serv-U data and it generates an LDAP query using the user unsanitized input!" he claimed. Not only might this be included in log4j attacks but it also is used for LDAP injection. 

SolarWinds claimed in its advisory, the Serv-U online log-in screen for LDAP authentication is  permitting symbols that are not appropriately sanitized and it had modified the input method "to do further validation and sanitization." The attacker cannot log in to Serv-U, according to a SolarWinds official, and the Microsoft researcher is referring to failed attempts because Serv-U doesn't use Log4J code. 

The unverified remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability in Log4j – identified as CVE-2021-44228 – has also been repurposed to infect and assist in the dissemination of malware used for the Mirai botnet by targeting Zyxel networking equipment, according to Akamai researchers. When researchers intended to access the Java payload class, the LDAP server in which the exploit was located was no longer active. It's claimed that Zyxel was particularly singled out since published an article claiming to have been hit by the log4j flaw. 

The scenario surrounding the Log4Shell breach has remained unchanged since last month, and threat actors looking to get access to corporate networks continue to target and exploit the vulnerability. Threat actors including ransomware gangs, nation-state cyber-espionage groups, crypto-mining gangs, initial access brokers, and DDoS botnets have all been reported to have exploited the vulnerability in the past. Although the Apache Software Foundation has issued patches for the Log4j library, threats against applications using it are likely to persist because not all of these apps have published a set of security updates, abandoning many systems vulnerable and creating a breeding soil for exploitation that will last for years.

XorDDoS, Mirai, and Mozi are Most Prominent Linux-targeted Malware


Linux-based computers are numerous and are an integral component of the internet backbone, but Linux malware has increasingly targeted low-power Internet of Things (IoT) devices. With billions of internet-connected devices such as vehicles, refrigerators, and network equipment online, IoT devices have become a prominent target for malware and distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, in which junk data is aimed at flooding a target and knocking it offline. 

Although ransomware is currently wreaking havoc on the malware scene in a deluge of high-profile attacks, a recent study on Linux security finds it only ranks third among the top threat kinds. Such shift in attitude stems in part from an increasing recognition among Linux hobbyists and system administrators that a compromised Linux system, such as a web server, presents attackers with a high return on investment.' In addition, malware research has improved visibility into the dangers that Linux systems face in recent years. 

In 2021, the XorDDoS, Mirai, and Mozi malware families and variants emerged to be the most prevalent, accounting for over 22% of all IoT Linux-targeting malware, according to an analysis of the current Linux threat landscape. 

XorDDoS is a Linux trojan that has been developed for a variety of Linux architectures, including ARM, x86, and x64. It gets its name from the fact that it uses XOR encryption in malware and network connection with the C2 infrastructure. XorDDoS variations on Linux PCs demonstrate that operators monitor and hunt for Docker servers with the 2375 port open. The port provides an unencrypted Docker socket and remote root passwordless access to the host, both of which can be exploited by attackers to get root access to the machine. 

Mozi is a P2P botnet network that uses the distributed hash table (DHT) architecture and implements its own expanded DHT. Mozi can mask C2 communication behind a significant volume of valid DHT traffic thanks to DHT's distributed and decentralized lookup method. By brute-forcing SSH and Telnet ports, Mozi attacks computers. It then blocks those ports to prevent additional malicious actors or viruses from overwriting them. 

Mirai virus has earned a name for itself in recent years, especially when its creator made the source code public. Mirai, like Mozi, employs brute-force assaults to infiltrate devices using weak protocols and passwords, such as Telnet.

Many business-critical applications use Linux as one of their core operating systems. Protecting Linux servers, which can be found on-premises as well as in private and public clouds, necessitates a solution that delivers runtime protection and visibility for all Linux hosts, independent of location.

12-Year-Old Authentication Bypass Vulnerability Could Allow Network Compromise


At least 20 router models have been found to have a 12-year-old authentication bypass vulnerability that might allow attackers to hijack networks and devices, possibly affecting millions of users. The critical path traversal bug was discovered by Evan Grant of Tenable and is tracked as CVE-2021–20090 with a CVSS of 9.8. It can be exploited by unauthenticated, remote attackers. Grant discovered the problem in Buffalo routers, notably the Arcadyan-based web interface software.

Grant discovered that bypass check() only checked as many bytes as there were in the bypass_list strings. Grant was able to circumvent authentication by exploiting this flaw, letting unauthenticated users view pages they shouldn't be able to. Two more vulnerabilities, CVE-2021-20091 and CVE-2021-20092, were discovered, however, they only target specific Buffalo routers at this time. 

According to Grant, this latest revelation raises concerns about the danger of supply chain attacks, which are becoming a more common and serious threat to businesses and technology users. “There is a much larger conversation to be had about how this vulnerability in Arcadyan’s firmware has existed for at least 10 years and has therefore found its way through the supply chain into at least 20 models across 17 different vendors,” Grant wrote. "Consequently, we were surprised they hadn’t been discovered and fixed by the manufacturer or vendors who are selling affected devices over the past decade." 

On Friday, just three days following the bug's disclosure, Juniper Networks cybersecurity researchers announced that they had detected active exploitation of the bug. “We have identified some attack patterns that attempt to exploit this vulnerability in the wild coming from an IP address located in Wuhan, Hubei province, China,” they wrote in a post. “The attacker seems to be attempting to deploy a Mirai variant on the affected routers.”

Mirai is a long-running botnet that can be used to launch distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks by infecting linked devices. It first appeared in 2016, when it overloaded Dyn web hosting servers, bringing down over 1,200 websites, including Netflix and Twitter. Its source code was disclosed later that year, prompting the emergence of additional Mirai versions. 

According to Juniper, several of the scripts used in the latest wave of assaults are similar to those used in prior attacks in February and March. “The similarity could indicate that the same threat actor is behind this new attack and attempting to upgrade their infiltration arsenal with yet another freshly disclosed vulnerability,” researchers wrote.

Newly discovered Mirai Botnet is Exploiting DVR in DDoS Attack


On Thursday, cybersecurity experts disclosed details regarding a newly discovered Mirai-inspired botnet called "mirai_ptea". It exploits an undisclosed flaw in a digital video recorder (DVR) provided by KGUARD to propagate and execute a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack.

Netlab 360, a Chinese security company pinned the first investigation into defects on March 23, 2021, before aggressive botnet attempts were detected on June 22, 2021. Since the emergence of the Mirai botnet in 2016, it has been linked to a series of large-scale DDoS attacks. 

In October 2016, users of DNS service provider Dyn in Europe and North America lost access to major Internet platforms and services. Since then, numerous versions of Mirai have sprung up in the field, partly because the source code is available on the internet. Mirai_ptea is no exception. 

According to researchers, the Mirai botnet is a piece of nasty Internet of Things (IoT) malware that compromised 300,000 IoT devices, such as wireless cameras, routers, and digital video recorders. It scans Internet of Things devices and uses default passwords and then adds the passwords into a botnet network, which is then used to launch DDoS attacks on websites and Internet infrastructure.

Cybersecurity researchers have not revealed the whole details regarding the security flaw in an attempt to prevent further exploitation, but the researchers said the KGUARD DVR firmware had vulnerable code prior to 2017 that enabled remote execution of system commands without authentication. At least approximately 3,000 devices published online are vulnerable to this flaw.

In addition to using Tor Proxy to link with the Command and Control (C2) server, analysis of the mirai_ptea sample disclosed extensive encryption of all sensitive resource information. It is decoded to establish a connection with the C2 server and retrieve attack commands for execution, including launching DDoS attacks. 

"The geographic distribution of bot source IPs is [...] mainly concentrated in the United States, Korea, and Brazil," the researchers stated, with infections reported across Europe, Asia, Australia, North and South America, and parts of Africa. 

In 2017, Paras Jha, 21, of Fanwood, New Jersey; Josiah White, 20, of Washington, Pennsylvania; and Dalton Norman, 21, of Metairie, Louisiana were charged for creating the Mirai IoT botnet. The three admitted conspiracy to violate the Computer Fraud & Abuse Act.

Katana: New Variant of Mirai Botnet Posing Serious Threat?

A new variant of the Mirai botnet, Katana is being identified recently by the Avira Protection Lab. The botnet is known to be under development, however, it already has various advanced capabilities like fast replication, secure C&C, layer 7 DDoS, and different encryption keys for each source. Katana has actively exploited security flaws in GPON, Linksys routers, and DLink to infected hundreds of devices.

The IoT botnet, Mirai has continually evolved since its source code was made publically available in 2017. A threat report published by Avira Protection Labs depicts this continuous evolution by highlighting how newer versions of Mirai are easily available — can be sold, bought, or sourced through YouTube channels, enabling amateur threat actors to develop malicious botnet. This increased the number of attacks. Furthermore, Katana is equipped with several classic features of the parent Botnet, Mirai, including running a single instance, a random process name. It also can edit and manipulate the watchdog to stop the system from restarting.

What is Mirai and how does it work? 

Mirai is a malicious program that replicates itself and therefore is also known as a 'self-propagating' worm. It does so by searching and infecting vulnerable IoT devices. Altogether, Mirai is constructed upon two modules; one being a replication module and the other one being an attack module. As the affected devices are managed and directed by a central set of command and control (C&C) servers, it is also regarded as a botnet. 
In one of their recent campaigns, attackers were seen downloading Sora, a variant of Mirai, from their server against vBulletin pre-auth RCE vulnerability. In another incident, a hacker was observed adopting Mirai source code to launch his variant of the malware named Scarface and Demon, which later were used to target YARN exploit and DVR exploit. 
While giving insights on the matter, Alexander Vukcevic, Director of Avira Protection Labs, told, "Katana contains several features of Mirai. These include running a single instance, a random process name, editing the watchdog to prevent the device from restarting, and DDoS commands," "The problem with new Mirai variants like Katana is that they are offered on the DarkNet or via regular sites like YouTube, allowing inexperienced cybercriminals to create their botnets."

LeeHozer and Moobot Have The Same Attack Maneuvers?

Sharing has become a thing with cyber-criminals and their malware mechanisms. Reportedly, LeetHozer botnet was found to have similar attack tactics as that of the Mootbot malware family. Researchers have reasons to think that the party that created the Moobot also could be the ones who created the LeetHozer.

Per researchers, the LeetHozer botnet has been counting on other kinds of malware for a little bit of sharing here and there. Per sources, it has in the past used the loader and reporter system that the Mirai uses.

Apparently, despite using the same mechanisms as Mirai the LeetHoxer threat was a little different. According to researchers, other Mirai variations too were altered including the encryption procedure, the bot program, and the command and control protocol. The unique "string and downloader" too were revealed to be of the same kind as Mirai.

Per reports, the botnet was noticed when it was found to be manipulating a vulnerability in the “telenet service” of a device. It made use of the default password to get access to the device. Once the device got infected the LeetHozer sent the information of the device to its reporter mechanism which then got to the command and control server and then finally the instructions for the Denial-of-Service attack were received.

The history of various attacks has it that Moobot has been a part of quite a lot of attacks ever since it first surfaced last year. According to researchers, several threat actors have made use of it to exploit zero-day vulnerabilities. It was discovered by the researchers while it was manipulating a zero-day vulnerability in fiber routers, reports mention. It hence is needless to say that one of the major attack tactics of the Moobot is exploiting any zero-day flaw it could get it claws into.

There are numerous ways in which an organization can create a barricade against any such attacks. The cyber and technological security personnel could design a response plan and a contingency plan especially against DDoS attacks, the systems should be backed up at all times, and configuration could be done in a way that as soon as the network is attacked the back-up kicks in. Also, researchers suggest that Artificial Intelligence could prove to be a very lucrative solution for such problems.