Incidents

Google helps phishers

We always expect a rise in cyber crime in the holiday season. This year, for instance, we have seen a noticeable rise in spam, along with a rise in phishing.

I have even received a phishing email in my Gmail mailbox – the first one in ages. The phish was nothing special; the usual notification about a new payment system for an online bank with a link to the spoofed website.

What caught my eye was how Google handled the phish. The Gmail interface added a number of relevant paid advertising links to the email. Take a look at the upper left and lower right corners:

I think that adding such links increase user trust in fraudulent emails. Users see that Google has included keyword-related links, so they are liable to trust the email – and fall victim to the phishing scam.

What do you think? In any case, holidays are unfortunately a busy time for criminals in all spheres, including the Internet. Take care of yourself and safe surfing!

Google helps phishers

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Reports

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.

Lazarus covets COVID-19-related intelligence

As the COVID-19 crisis grinds on, some threat actors are trying to speed up vaccine development by any means available. We have found evidence that the Lazarus group is going after intelligence that could help these efforts by attacking entities related to COVID-19 research.

Sunburst: connecting the dots in the DNS requests

We matched private and public DNS data for the SUNBURST-malware root C2 domain with the CNAME records, to identify who was targeted for further exploitation. In total, we analyzed 1722 DNS records, leading to 1026 unique target name parts and 964 unique UIDs.

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