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

8/23/2011
10:24 PM
Connect Directly
Google+
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Worm Morphs, Attacks Banks With Zeus-Like Features

Revamped Ramnit malware 'a powerful weapon,' researcher says

Banks in the U.S. and U.K. are under attack by a newly retooled worm that incorporates features from the infamous Zeus and SpyEye financial fraud Trojans.

Ayelet Heyman, senior malware researcher for Trusteer, calls the so-called Ramnit "a powerful weapon." The Ramnit malware has been around for about 18 months, and was recently discovered sporting Zeus-like capabilities, such as HTML code injection into browsers in order to game two-factor authentication and transaction signing systems used by financial firms for online banking security.

"The strength of Ramnit is in its parasitic behavior -- in its spreading speed and infection scale," Heyman says. "Usage of a worm like Ramnit, which is known for its large infection scale, as a platform to commit financial fraud creates a powerful weapon."

Ramnit represents some 17.3 percent of all new malware infections, according to recent Symantec data, and Trusteer says it found tens of thousands of machines are infected with Ramnit. The malware's command-and-control servers are still up and running, residing in Germany, according to Trusteer.

Initially a traditional worm that targets .exe, .scr., .dll, and .html file types, as well as others, Ramnit has adopted some Zeus features, thanks to the source code for the infamous malware platform becoming available online this year. Trusteer researchers say it's easy to move Zeus to Ramnit because the technique for configuring Ramnit to go after a particular bank is the same as doing so with Zeus.

Ramnit's man-in-the-browser (MitB) Web injection module lets it modify client-side Web pages as well as transactions in such a way that's invisible to the user and host application, Heyman says.

"The metamorphosis of Ramnit into financial malware is a sign of things to come now that the Zeus source code has been made openly available to anyone on the Internet," says Amit Klein, CTO of Trusteer. "Unlike the past, when financial institutions had to defend against a limited number of malware platforms, attacks can now come from virtually any malicious software program -- old or new. The malware distribution channel for fraudsters has increased in scale significantly."

Trusteer included screen shots of the Ramnit attacks in a blog post today.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Add Your Comment" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message. Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
For Cybersecurity to Be Proactive, Terrains Must Be Mapped
Craig Harber, Chief Technology Officer at Fidelis Cybersecurity,  10/8/2019
A Realistic Threat Model for the Masses
Lysa Myers, Security Researcher, ESET,  10/9/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
7 Threats & Disruptive Forces Changing the Face of Cybersecurity
This Dark Reading Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at the biggest emerging threats and disruptive forces that are changing the face of cybersecurity today.
Flash Poll
2019 Online Malware and Threats
2019 Online Malware and Threats
As cyberattacks become more frequent and more sophisticated, enterprise security teams are under unprecedented pressure to respond. Is your organization ready?
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-17593
PUBLISHED: 2019-10-14
JIZHICMS 1.5.1 allows admin.php/Admin/adminadd.html CSRF to add an administrator.
CVE-2019-17594
PUBLISHED: 2019-10-14
There is a heap-based buffer over-read in the _nc_find_entry function in tinfo/comp_hash.c in the terminfo library in ncurses before 6.1-20191012.
CVE-2019-17595
PUBLISHED: 2019-10-14
There is a heap-based buffer over-read in the fmt_entry function in tinfo/comp_hash.c in the terminfo library in ncurses before 6.1-20191012.
CVE-2019-14823
PUBLISHED: 2019-10-14
A flaw was found in the "Leaf and Chain" OCSP policy implementation in JSS' CryptoManager versions after 4.4.6, 4.5.3, 4.6.0, where it implicitly trusted the root certificate of a certificate chain. Applications using this policy may not properly verify the chain and could be vulnerable to...
CVE-2019-17592
PUBLISHED: 2019-10-14
The csv-parse module before 4.4.6 for Node.js is vulnerable to Regular Expression Denial of Service. The __isInt() function contains a malformed regular expression that processes large crafted input very slowly. This is triggered when using the cast option.