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PYSA, the ransomware attacking schools

The education sector’s cybersecurity problem has compounded in the last few months. A recent warning from the FBI, in mid-March, put schools in the US and UK on notice of increased attacks from the threat actors behind the PYSA ransomware. If this is the first time you’ve heard of this family, read on. What is PYSA ransomware? Home page image of the PYSA data leak site (Courtesy of … [Read more...]

HelloKitty: When Cyberpunk met cy-purr-crime

On February 9, after discovering a compromise, CD Projekt Red (CDPR) announced to its 1+ million followers on Twitter that it was the victim of a ransomware attack against its systems (and made it clear they would not yield to the demands of the threat actors, nor negotiate). Cyberpunk 2077, the latest game released by CD Projekt Red and once hailed as the “most anticipated game of the decade”, … [Read more...]

Ryuk ransomware develops worm-like capability

The French government’s computer emergency readiness team, that’s part of the National Cybersecurity Agency of France, or ANSSI, has discovered a Ryuk variant that has worm-like capabilities during an incident response. For those unacquainted with Ryuk, it is a type of ransomware that is used in targeted attacks against enterprises and organizations. It was first discovered in the … [Read more...]

Threat profile: Egregor ransomware is making a name for itself

What is Egregor? Egregor ransomware is a relatively new ransomware (first spotted in September 2020) that seems intent on making its way to the top right now. Egregor is considered a variant of Ransom.Sekhmet based on similarities in obfuscation, API-calls, and the ransom note. As we’ve reported in the past, affiliates that were using Maze ransomware started moving over to Egregor even … [Read more...]

Threat spotlight: WastedLocker, customized ransomware

WastedLocker is a new ransomware operated by a malware exploitation gang commonly known as the Evil Corp gang. The same gang that is associated with Dridex and BitPaymer. The attribution is not based on the malware variants as WastedLocker is very different from BitPaymer. What was kept was the ability to add specific modules for different targets. The attacks performed using WastedLocker … [Read more...]

Search hijackers change Chrome policy to remote administration

The latest type of installer in the saga of search hijacking changes a Chrome policy which tells users it can’t be removed because the browser is managed from the outside. As you can imagine, that has freaked out quite a few Chrome users. We have talked about the search hijacker’s business model in detail. Suffice to say, it is a billion-dollar industry and a lot of search hijackers want a … [Read more...]

Maze: the ransomware that introduced an extra twist

An extra way to create leverage against victims of ransomware has been introduced by the developers of the Maze ransomware. If the victim is not convinced that she should pay the criminals because her files are encrypted, there could be an extra method of extortion. Over time, more organizations have found ways to keep safe copies of their important files or use some kind of rollback technology to … [Read more...]

Threat spotlight: RobbinHood ransomware takes the driver’s seat

Despite their name, the RobbinHood cybercriminal gang is not stealing from the rich to give to the poor. Instead, these ransomware developers are more like big game hunters—attacking enterprise organizations and critical infrastructure and keeping all the spoils for themselves. In 2019, the RobbinHood ransomware creators successfully attacked and received ransom payouts from the cities of … [Read more...]

Business in the front, party in the back: backdoors in elastic servers expose private data

It seems like every day we read another article about a data breach or leak of cloud storage exposing millions of users’ data. The unfortunate truth is that the majority of these leaks require no actual “hacking” on the part of the attacker. Most of the time, this highly confidential data is just sitting in open databases, ripe for the picking. It’s all too easy to … [Read more...]

Threat spotlight: Phobos ransomware lives up to its name

Ransomware has struck dead on organizations since it became a mainstream tool in cybercriminals’ belts years ago. From massive WannaCry outbreaks in 2017 to industry-focused attacks by Ryuk in 2019, ransomware’s got its hooks in global businesses and shows no signs of stopping. That includes a malware family known as Phobos ransomware, named after the Greek god of fear. Phobos is … [Read more...]