Incidents

Avarta – an MS Publisher virus

The spring seems to be a prolific time for new ideas and proof of concept viruses. However, not all of them are a cause for concern.

For instance, we’ve received a new virus which infects Microsoft Publisher (*.pub) documents. You can find a description of Avarta here.

Due to its crude replication method and obvious payload, Avarta has zero chances of getting in the wild. Three or four years ago, this might have been an innovative piece of malware. But now macroviruses are virtually extinct, making Avarta proof of concept for something that will never become a threat.

Avarta – an MS Publisher virus

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Reports

The leap of a Cycldek-related threat actor

The investigation described in this article started with one such file which caught our attention due to the various improvements it brought to this well-known infection vector.

Lazarus targets defense industry with ThreatNeedle

In mid-2020, we realized that Lazarus was launching attacks on the defense industry using the ThreatNeedle cluster, an advanced malware cluster of Manuscrypt (a.k.a. NukeSped). While investigating this activity, we were able to observe the complete life cycle of an attack, uncovering more technical details and links to the group’s other campaigns.

Sunburst backdoor – code overlaps with Kazuar

While looking at the Sunburst backdoor, we discovered several features that overlap with a previously identified backdoor known as Kazuar. Our observations shows that Kazuar was used together with Turla tools during multiple breaches in past years.

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