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
Oldest First  |  Newest First  |  Threaded View
News
FluBot Malware's Rapid Spread May Soon Hit US Phones
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  4/28/2021
Slideshows
7 Modern-Day Cybersecurity Realities
Steve Zurier, Contributing Writer,  4/30/2021
Commentary
How to Secure Employees' Home Wi-Fi Networks
Bert Kashyap, CEO and Co-Founder at SecureW2,  4/28/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-35519
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-06
An out-of-bounds (OOB) memory access flaw was found in x25_bind in net/x25/af_x25.c in the Linux kernel version v5.12-rc5. A bounds check failure allows a local attacker with a user account on the system to gain access to out-of-bounds memory, leading to a system crash or a leak of internal kernel i...
CVE-2021-20204
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-06
A heap memory corruption problem (use after free) can be triggered in libgetdata v0.10.0 when processing maliciously crafted dirfile databases. This degrades the confidentiality, integrity and availability of third-party software that uses libgetdata as a library. This vulnerability may lead to arbi...
CVE-2021-30473
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-06
aom_image.c in libaom in AOMedia before 2021-04-07 frees memory that is not located on the heap.
CVE-2021-32030
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-06
The administrator application on ASUS GT-AC2900 devices before 3.0.0.4.386.42643 allows authentication bypass when processing remote input from an unauthenticated user, leading to unauthorized access to the administrator interface. This relates to handle_request in router/httpd/httpd.c and auth_chec...
CVE-2021-22209
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-06
An issue has been discovered in GitLab CE/EE affecting all versions starting from 13.8. GitLab was not properly validating authorisation tokens which resulted in GraphQL mutation being executed.