04:16 PM
George V. Hulme
George V. Hulme

Microsoft Steps Up To Dethrone Zeus

Microsoft is throwing another punch at this most nasty and extremely active botnet.

Microsoft is throwing another punch at this most nasty and extremely active botnet.Early this month there was a flurry of arrests surrounding a cybercrime gang utilizing the dangerous triad of exploits, botnets, and money mules.

From Feds Bust Zeus Financial Cybercrime Ring earlier this month:

Federal and state authorities announced Thursday that they have charged numerous people in connection with a global cybercrime scheme using the Zeus financial malware toolkit to steal $3 million from U.S. bank accounts. The investigation was dubbed "Operation ACHing Mule," alluding to the attackers' use of Automatic Clearing House fraud, as well as "money mules" to move money.

According to Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., "this advanced cybercrime ring is a disturbing example of organized crime in the twenty-first century -- high-tech and widespread."

To help fight the Zeus botnet, Microsoft has added Zeus detection to its Malicious Software Removal Tool, or MSRT. MSRT is a free anti-malware tool that is released on patch Tuesday and scans most versions of Microsoft Windows for malware to disinfect.

From Microsoft's Malware Protection Center blog, it does seem the software maker is bent on ridding the world of as many Zeus infections as possible:

This family is quite prolific even if the intent behind some of the botnets is unclear. That said, we find ourselves knocking on Zbot's door this month, and we're glad we are. Zbot is the latest addition to MSRT's ever-growing list of malware, and we hope to continue protecting the Windows ecosystem with this new family firmly in our sights.

However, as Dark Reading points out in this post, Zeus isn't the only threat, botnets such as Bugat and Carberp also pose serious threats.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
Dark Reading Tech Digest September 7, 2015
Some security flaws go beyond simple app vulnerabilities. Have you checked for these?
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
Published: 2015-10-09
Simple Streams (simplestreams) does not properly verify the GPG signatures of disk image files, which allows remote mirror servers to spoof disk images and have unspecified other impact via a 403 (aka Forbidden) response.

Published: 2015-10-09
The Telephony component in Apple OS X before 10.11, when the Continuity feature is enabled, allows local users to bypass intended telephone-call restrictions via unspecified vectors.

Published: 2015-10-09
IcedTea-Web before 1.5.3 and 1.6.x before 1.6.1 does not properly sanitize applet URLs, which allows remote attackers to inject applets into the .appletTrustSettings configuration file and bypass user approval to execute the applet via a crafted web page, possibly related to line breaks.

Published: 2015-10-09
IcedTea-Web before 1.5.3 and 1.6.x before 1.6.1 does not properly determine the origin of unsigned applets, which allows remote attackers to bypass the approval process or trick users into approving applet execution via a crafted web page.

Published: 2015-10-09
The Safari Extensions implementation in Apple Safari before 9 does not require user confirmation before replacing an installed extension, which has unspecified impact and attack vectors.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
What can the information security industry do to solve the IoT security problem? Learn more and join the conversation on the next episode of Dark Reading Radio.