Vulnerabilities / Threats
9/26/2013
07:13 AM
Dark Reading
Dark Reading
Products and Releases
50%
50%

22 Hours: Average Time It Takes Malware Distributors To Exploit News Events

E-mail security provider Eleven sees instances of criminals inventing "breaking news" that appears to relate to high-profile current event

Berlin, September 26, 2013 - Cybercriminals continue to respond with lightning speed when they see an opportunity to exploit a national or global news story to spread malware. In fact, the Research Team of Eleven, leading German e-mail security provider, now sees instances of criminals inventing "breaking news" that appears to relate to high-profile current events.

The Eleven Research Team continually analyzes malicious campaigns that exploit breaking news using the CNN name and other prominent news outlets to lure email recipients to malicious sites. The average time between an actual news event and its exploitation hovered around 22 hours during the last three months.

On Friday, September 6, malware distributors invented fake news designed to take advantage of public interest in the possibility of a U.S. airstrike against Syria. The emails used the subject line, "The United States Began Bombing," and were crafted to appear as a legitimate CNN news alert. It is an example of the cybercriminal community harnessing the interest and anxiousness about current events to increase the success of their malicious campaigns.

Prior to the Syria-related example, the average start time for a virus attack was already decreasing. In March 2013, when the new Pope was elected, the first malware and phishing attacks began after 55 hours. In April 2013, after the Boston Marathon bombing, it took 27 hours to see the first related attacks exploiting interest in the event. Further examples include the newborn royal baby and news about the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden. But examples such as the recent Syria-related campaign in September show that spammers are not waiting around - they are becoming even "faster" than the events themselves.

Each month, the research team of Eleven, leading German e-mail security provider, presents the "Number of the Month" - a number representing and illustrating a current issue or trend in Internet security.

Eleven on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/elevensecurity

Eleven - Integrated Message Security

Leading German e-mail security provider Eleven is a pioneer in the field of managed e-mail security and offers products and services for protecting e-mail infrastructures for companies, ISPs, and public institutions. The company, founded in 2001 and headquartered in Berlin, specializes in cloud-based managed e-mail security. In addition, Eleven also offers in-house software and white-label solutions as well as SDKs for OEM partners.

Eleven examines and filters over one billion e-mails every day. Globally, Eleven solutions protect over 45,000 companies. Eleven customers include Internet service providers such as 1&1, T-Online, Freenet, and O2 as well as renowned corporations and organizations such as Air Berlin, BMW, the Federal Association of German Banks, DATEV, the Free University Berlin, Porsche, RTL Television, SAP, and ThyssenKrupp. Eleven is part of the globally active Internet security provider Commtouch® (NASDAQ: CTCH). For more information, visit our website at: http://www.eleven.de.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon
Current Issue
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2011-4403
Published: 2015-04-24
Multiple cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerabilities in Zen Cart 1.3.9h allow remote attackers to hijack the authentication of administrators for requests that (1) delete a product via a delete_product_confirm action to product.php or (2) disable a product via a setflag action to categories.ph...

CVE-2012-2930
Published: 2015-04-24
Multiple cross-site request forgery (CSRF) vulnerabilities in TinyWebGallery (TWG) before 1.8.8 allow remote attackers to hijack the authentication of administrators for requests that (1) add a user via an adduser action to admin/index.php or (2) conduct static PHP code injection attacks in .htusers...

CVE-2012-2932
Published: 2015-04-24
Multiple cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerabilities in TinyWebGallery (TWG) before 1.8.8 allow remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the (1) selitems[] parameter in a copy, (2) chmod, or (3) arch action to admin/index.php or (4) searchitem parameter in a search action to admin/...

CVE-2012-5451
Published: 2015-04-24
Multiple stack-based buffer overflows in HttpUtils.dll in TVMOBiLi before 2.1.0.3974 allow remote attackers to cause a denial of service (tvMobiliService service crash) via a long string in a (1) GET or (2) HEAD request to TCP port 30888.

CVE-2015-0297
Published: 2015-04-24
Red Hat JBoss Operations Network 3.3.1 does not properly restrict access to certain APIs, which allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary Java methos via the (1) ServerInvokerServlet or (2) SchedulerService or (3) cause a denial of service (disk consumption) via the ContentManager.

Dark Reading Radio
Archived Dark Reading Radio
Join security and risk expert John Pironti and Dark Reading Editor-in-Chief Tim Wilson for a live online discussion of the sea-changing shift in security strategy and the many ways it is affecting IT and business.