Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Application Security //

Malware detection

// // //
4/22/2019
12:35 PM
Larry Loeb
Larry Loeb
Larry Loeb

Over 500 Million Chrome iOS Sessions Hijacked in Massive Malvertising Campaign

Confiant has spotted the known threat actor eGobbler back in action.

Confiant has spotted the known threat actor eGobbler back in action. This group is well-known for attempting its campaigns around holidays, which is when it assumes there will be increased consumer traffic.

But this go-around the group is exploiting a currently unpatched flaw in the Chrome for iOS browser, to bypass sandboxing and hijack user sessions. This means that iPhone and iPad users are directly targeted.

eGobbler has historically used the ".world" TLD for their landing media like pop-ups, but this campaign seems to be using ".site" TLDs for web-based content.

eGobbler's main session hijacking mechanism in this case, however, was pop-up based. This is a change in strategy since when a browser's pop-up blocker is working it will stop the pop-up from appearing. Session hijacking happens when a user is redirected to another site or landing page. Alternatively, a pop-up can appear that one can't exit out of. The served pages look like ads from well-known brands, but they aren't. If clicked, a malicious payload is then deployed to the user.

Confiant has said that they "discovered techniques that took advantage of iOS Chrome's detection around user activated pop-up detection, resulting in the circumvention of pop-up blocking." Since Chrome remains unpatched at the time of this writing, Confiant is not revealing the exact code details of how this is done. That the exploit is able to bypass that need for user interaction should be impossible according to the same-origin policy (as it pertains to cross-origin iframes).

Additionally, this exploit also completely circumvents the browser's anti-redirect functionality. The attacker no longer needs to even spawn a redirect in order to hijack the user session. This latest hijacking lasted six days and started on Saturday, April 6. Confiant say that it was composed of eight individual campaigns and over 30 fake creatives. While the targeting was primarily US based, European publishers saw significant impact as well.

Confiant thinks over 500 million user sessions were exposed to the hijacking. They also said that "With half a billion user sessions impacted, this is among the top three massive malvertising campaigns that we have seen in the last 18 months."

eGobble will typically use cloaked intermediate CDN domains as part of their ad delivery. The domains may sit behind at least a single layer of client-side fingerprinting.

There remains a question about whether some of the hijacking tricks that are being used on Chrome can also be applied to Apple's Safari. Until explicit details of the exploit are known, no solid answer can be made.

— Larry Loeb has written for many of the last century's major "dead tree" computer magazines, having been, among other things, a consulting editor for BYTE magazine and senior editor for the launch of WebWeek.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Edge-DRsplash-10-edge-articles
I Smell a RAT! New Cybersecurity Threats for the Crypto Industry
David Trepp, Partner, IT Assurance with accounting and advisory firm BPM LLP,  7/9/2021
News
Attacks on Kaseya Servers Led to Ransomware in Less Than 2 Hours
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  7/7/2021
Commentary
It's in the Game (but It Shouldn't Be)
Tal Memran, Cybersecurity Expert, CYE,  7/9/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
Black Hat USA 2022 Attendee Report
Black Hat attendees are not sleeping well. Between concerns about attacks against cloud services, ransomware, and the growing risks to the global supply chain, these security pros have a lot to be worried about. Read our 2022 report to hear what they're concerned about now.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2022-35942
PUBLISHED: 2022-08-12
Improper input validation on the `contains` LoopBack filter may allow for arbitrary SQL injection. When the extended filter property `contains` is permitted to be interpreted by the Postgres connector, it is possible to inject arbitrary SQL which may affect the confidentiality and integrity of data ...
CVE-2022-35949
PUBLISHED: 2022-08-12
undici is an HTTP/1.1 client, written from scratch for Node.js.`undici` is vulnerable to SSRF (Server-side Request Forgery) when an application takes in **user input** into the `path/pathname` option of `undici.request`. If a user specifies a URL such as `http://127.0.0.1` or `//127.0.0.1` ```js con...
CVE-2022-35953
PUBLISHED: 2022-08-12
BookWyrm is a social network for tracking your reading, talking about books, writing reviews, and discovering what to read next. Some links in BookWyrm may be vulnerable to tabnabbing, a form of phishing that gives attackers an opportunity to redirect a user to a malicious site. The issue was patche...
CVE-2022-35956
PUBLISHED: 2022-08-12
This Rails gem adds two methods to the ActiveRecord::Base class that allow you to update many records on a single database hit, using a case sql statement for it. Before version 0.1.3 `update_by_case` gem used custom sql strings, and it was not sanitized, making it vulnerable to sql injection. Upgra...
CVE-2022-35943
PUBLISHED: 2022-08-12
Shield is an authentication and authorization framework for CodeIgniter 4. This vulnerability may allow [SameSite Attackers](https://canitakeyoursubdomain.name/) to bypass the [CodeIgniter4 CSRF protection](https://codeigniter4.github.io/userguide/libraries/security.html) mechanism with CodeIgniter ...