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.

Attacks/Breaches

New Exploit Masquerades As Flash Player Upgrade

Phishing campaign has hit more than 3.5 million mailboxes, researchers say

Researchers have detected a new phishing attack that promises to enhance the security of the user's emailbox -- and then downloads a malicious Trojan instead.

The email requests that recipients click on a link in the body of the email to update the "security mode" of their emailboxes, according to researchers at Red Condor, an email security tool vendor.

Users who click on the link are taken to a Website that advises them to update to the latest version of the Macromedia Flash Player by downloading "flashinstaller.exe." This executable is actually a banking Trojan that is known to disable firewalls, steal sensitive financial data, and provide hackers with remote access capabilities, Red Condor says.

The malware is more commonly known as Win32:Zbot-MGA (Avast), W32/Bifrost.C.gen!Eldorado (F-Prot), PWS-Zbot.gen.v (McAfee), or PWS:Win32/Zbot.gen!R (Microsoft), the researchers note.

The spam campaign was detected late on Nov. 20; within the first six hours, Red Condor says it blocked more than 500,000 email messages. So far, the company says it has stopped more than 3.5 million messages belonging to this campaign.

"Protecting inboxes is seen as business-critical, so it is no surprise that spammers and cybercriminals are playing off of email users' growing security concerns with security-focused junk mail," says Tom Steding, president and CEO of Red Condor. Hours after the spam campaign began, only about half of the antivirus products had begun to recognize and block it, Steding says.

"Spam that suggests users update their Flash Player is a common type of scam during the holidays, but it is often associated with viewing a fake e-card or a viral video," Steding observes. "We encourage email users, particularly those returning to full inboxes after the Thanksgiving holiday, to immediately delete these messages and notify their IT administrators."

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message. Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
HackerOne Drops Mobile Voting App Vendor Voatz
Dark Reading Staff 3/30/2020
Limited-Time Free Offers to Secure the Enterprise Amid COVID-19
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  3/31/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
6 Emerging Cyber Threats That Enterprises Face in 2020
This Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at six emerging cyber threats that enterprises could face in 2020. Download your copy today!
Flash Poll
State of Cybersecurity Incident Response
State of Cybersecurity Incident Response
Data breaches and regulations have forced organizations to pay closer attention to the security incident response function. However, security leaders may be overestimating their ability to detect and respond to security incidents. Read this report to find out more.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-11529
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-04
Common/Grav.php in Grav before 1.6.23 has an Open Redirect.
CVE-2020-11527
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-04
In Zoho ManageEngine OpManager before 12.4.181, an unauthenticated remote attacker can send a specially crafted URI to read arbitrary files.
CVE-2020-11528
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-04
bit2spr 1992-06-07 has a stack-based buffer overflow (129-byte write) in conv_bitmap in bit2spr.c via a long line in a bitmap file.
CVE-2020-11518
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-04
Zoho ManageEngine ADSelfService Plus before 5815 allows unauthenticated remote code execution.
CVE-2020-5347
PUBLISHED: 2020-04-04
Dell EMC Isilon OneFS versions 8.2.2 and earlier contain a denial of service vulnerability. SmartConnect had an error condition that may be triggered to loop, using CPU and potentially preventing other SmartConnect DNS responses.