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New paper: Botception: botnet distributes script with bot capabilities

In a new paper, Avast researchers Jan Sirmer and Adolf Streda look at how a spam campaign sent via the Necurs botnet was delivering the Flawed Ammyy RAT. As well as publishing the paper, we have also released the video of the reseachers' VB2018 presentati…
The Necurs botnet has been active for some time. In 2014, Virus Bulletin published a 3-part article by Peter Ferrie (1, 2, 3) who had studied the botnet in great detail. And… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/12/new-paper-botception-botnet-distributes-script-bot-capabilities/

VB2018 video: Behind the scenes of the SamSam investigation

Today we have published the video of the VB2018 presentation by Andrew Brandt (Sophos) on the SamSam ransomware, which became hot news following the indictment of its two suspected authors yesterday.
Yesterday, a federal grand jury in the US unsealed an indictment charging two Iranians with being behind the SamSam ransomware. SamSam has been one of the most successful… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/11/vb2018-video-behind-scenes-samsam-investigation/

VB2018 video: Foreverdays: tracking and mitigating threats targeting civil society orgs

Today, we publish the video of the VB2018 presentation by CitizenLab researchers Masashi Nishihata and John Scott Railton, on threats faced by civil society.
Israel's NSO Group is in hot water following a Haaretz report that revealed that the company negotiated with the Saudi government on the sale of its spyware, leading the local… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/11/vb2018-video-foreverdays-tracking-and-mitigating-threats-targeting-civil-society-orgs/

VB2018 paper: Since the hacking of Sony Pictures

The Lazarus Group, which became (in)famous through the Sony Pictures breach and the WannaCry attack, is still very much active and targeting financial institutions around the world. Today we publish the VB2018 paper by AhnLab researcher Minseok (Jacky) Ch…
Recent activity shows that the Lazarus Group, which became (in)famous through the Sony Pictures breach and the WannaCry attack, is still very much active and targeting financial… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/11/vb2018-paper-hacking-sony-pictures/

VB2018 video: Shedding skin - Turla's fresh faces

Today, we have published the video of a VB2018 presentation by Kaspersky Lab researchers Kurt Baumgartner and Mike Scott, who looked at the latest activity of the Turla group.
"Capable, well-resourced, and they go back decades." The Turla threat group doesn't make the news as much as some other Russian-speaking APT groups, but it is one of the most… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/11/vb2018-video-shedding-skin-turlas-fresh-faces/

VB2018 video: Triada: the past, the present and the (hopefully not existing) future

Today we publish the video of the VB2018 presentation by Google researcher Lukasz Siewierski on the Triada Android malware and Google's work with OEMs to remove it from infected devices.
From NotPetya to Shadowpad, supply chain attacks have become a serious and hard-to-fight security problem. One prominent type of supply chain attack involves the pre-installation… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/11/vb2018-video-triada-past-present-and-hopefully-not-existing-future/

VB2018 paper: Uncovering the wholesale industry of social media fraud: from botnet to bulk reseller panels

Today, we publish the VB2018 paper by Masarah Paquet-Clouston (GoSecure) who looked at the supply chain behind social media fraud.
On the day of the 2018 US mid-term elections, there will be few who are not aware of the activity of botnets on social media and how these, allegedly, have tried to influence… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/11/vb2018-paper-uncovering-wholesale-industry-social-media-fraud-botnet-bulk-reseller-panels/

VB2018 paper: Now you see it, now you don't: wipers in the wild

Today, we publish the VB2018 paper from Saher Naumaan (BAE Systems) who looks at malware variants that contain a wiper functionality. We also publish the recording of her presentation.
Early computer viruses were often destructive in nature, but once criminals learned about the money they could make from malware, they realised that destructiveness hurt their… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/11/vb2018-paper-now-you-see-it-now-you-dont-wipers-wild/

VB2018 paper: Who wasn’t responsible for Olympic Destroyer?

Cisco Talos researchers Paul Rascagnères and Warren Mercer were among the first to write about the Olympic Destroyer, the malware that targeted the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games. Today, we publish the paper they presented at VB2018 about the malwa…
It may be hard to believe, but it was only eight months ago that the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games were targeted by malware named Olympic Destroyer. Though not the first… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/10/who-wasnt-responsible-olympic-destroyer/

VB2018 paper: From drive-by download to drive-by mining: understanding the new paradigm

Today, we publish the VB2018 paper by Malwarebytes researcher Jérôme Segura, in which he details the shift from exploit kits to drive-by mining. We also publish the video of his VB2018 presentation.
When it comes to web-based threats, Malwarebytes researcher Jérôme Segura is one of the people to follow. His quarterly reviews of the exploit kit landscape are an essential read… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/10/vb2018-paper-drive-download-drive-mining-understanding-new-paradigm/

VB2018 presentation: The wolf in sheep's clothing - undressed

Today, we publish the video of the VB2018 presentation by CSIS researchers Benoît Ancel and Aleksejs Kuprins, who looked at a rather dubious seller of government spyware, described by someone else operating in the same space as a "criminal of the worst ki…
In recent years, we have seen a trend of commercial spyware being sold to governments. This is a very controversial subject, not least because of the frequent use of this spyware… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/10/wolf-sheeps-clothing-undressed/

VB2018 paper: The dark side of WebAssembly

Today, we publish the VB2018 paper by Symantec researchers Aishwarya Lonkar and Siddhesh Chandrayan on the security risks that come with WebAssembly.
With this year's very successful Virus Bulletin Conference (VB2018) now behind us, we plan to continue the tradition of publishing most of the papers and videos of the… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/10/vb2018-paper-dark-side-webassembly/

VB2018 preview: Workshops

Workshops make their VB Conference debut during VB2018, giving delegates the opportunity to learn the basics of kernel-level malware analysis, Android reverse-engineering and artificial intelligence.
The Virus Bulletin Conference is first and foremost a place to learn: about new threats, about the tools used to detect and fight them, and to learn about (and get to know) the… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/vb2018-preview-workshops/

New article: Through the looking glass: webcam interception and protection in kernel mode

Today we publish a short article by Ronen Slavin and Michael Maltsev, researchers at Reason Software Company, who dive into the video capturing internals on Windows, and explain how this can be used by a malicious actor to steal images recorded by a compu…
Today we publish a short article by Ronen Slavin and Michael Maltsev, researchers at Reason Software, one of the partners of VB2018. In the article, Ronen and Michael dive into… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/new-article-through-looking-glass-webcam-intercepton-and-protection-kernel-mode/

VB2018 preview: The botnet landscape - live threats and steps for mitigation (Small Talk)

In a Small Talk at VB2018, Spamhaus's Simon Forster will present the organization's research into the botnet landscape and will discuss with the audience topics such as how the rise of anonymzation techniques and the hosting of botnets on well-regarded cl…
Whether they're used to send spam, to perform DDoS attacks, or as a proxy network for other kinds of nefarious activities, botnets remain a prominent tool for cybercriminals, and… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/vb2018-preview-botnet-landscape-live-threats-and-steps-mitigation-small-talk/

VB2018 preview: Anatomy of an attack: detecting and defeating CRASHOVERRIDE

In today's blog post, we preview the VB2018 paper by Dragos Inc.'s Joe Slowik, who looks at the CRASHOVERRIDE malware, the first (publicly known) malware designed to impact electric grid operations.
One of the many highlights of last year's Virus Bulletin Conference was a last-minute paper by ESET researchers Anton Cherepanov and Robert Lipovsky on Industroyer, 'the first… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/vb2018-preview-anatomy-attack-detecting-and-defeating-crashoverride/

VB2018 preview: Cyber Threat Alliance

In today's blog post we look at a report on illicit cryptocurrency mining by the Cyber Threat Alliance and also look forward to the VB2018 talk by the CTA's CEO Michael Daniel.
Last week, the Cyber Threat Alliance (CTA) published a report on the illicit mining of cryptocurrencies. The report is notable for two reasons: first because it is exceptionally… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/vb2018-preview-cyber-threat-alliance/

VB2018 preview: hacking cars

In recent years, car hacking has evolved from a mostly theoretical research field involving giggling researchers and scared journalists, to one that actually concerns car owners and manufacturers. On today's blog we preview two VB2018 papers, by Inbar Raz…
In recent years, car hacking has evolved from a mostly theoretical research field involving giggling researchers and scared journalists, to one that actually concerns car owners… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/vb2018-preview-hacking-cars/

Where are all the ‘A’s in APT?

In a guest blog post by VB2018 gold partner Kaspersky Lab, Costin Raiu, Director of the company's Global Research and Analysis Team, looks critically at the 'A' in APT.
In a guest blog post by VB2018 gold partner Kaspersky Lab, Costin Raiu, Director of the company's Global Research and Analysis Team, looks critically at the 'A' in APT.   A… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/where-are-all-apt/

VB2018 preview: commercial spyware and its use by governments

Today, we preview three VB2018 presentations that look at threats against civil society in general and the use of commercial spyware by governments for this purpose in particular.
Yesterday, a new report by Citizen Lab looked at NSO Group's Pegasus spyware and its global use. The report is worth a read, for the political implications of the findings, for… https://virusbulletin.com/blog/2018/09/vb2018-preview-commercial-spyware-and-its-use-governments/

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