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.

Threat Intelligence

8/28/2020
01:05 PM
50%
50%

TA542 Returns With Emotet: What's Different Now

Researchers report the TA542 threat group has made code changes to its malware and started targeting new locations with Emotet.

TA542, a threat group known for distributing Emotet malware, returned this summer following a hiatus that spanned from Feb. 7 through July 17. Now back, its email campaigns are the most rampant by message volume, which is roughly the same as it was before its break.

Proofpoint researchers watching TA542 say aside from some new techniques and incremental changes, the group has made "surprisingly minimal change" in its tactics or tooling considering the length of time it was gone.

Related Content:

Microsoft: Emotet Attack Shut Down an Entire Business Network

Emotet Return Brings New Tactics & Evasion Techniques

Significant updates include the distribution of the Qbot affiliate "partner01," replacing The Trick as the primary malware payload delivered by Emotet. Researchers also noticed a change in the Emotet sending module, which can now deliver benign attachments in addition to malicious ones. Emails usually have a malicious URL or attachment; they sometimes, but rarely, include both.

Smaller changes were seen in the emails themselves, where researchers noticed a "significant volume" of thread hijacking and language localization. TA542 continues to leverage generic lures, as well as news-related bait related to COVID-19 and other topics. Similar to before the break, TA542 uses Word attachments with macros, PDF attachments, and URLs linking to Word files.

The group continues to target a core set of regions, including Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada. Now researchers see attackers expanding to test new geographies, such as Indonesia, the Philippines, Sweden, and India. 

"Whether they iterate and change their tactics or continue in the same manner, Emotet remains a highly dangerous threat," researchers state. 

Read the full analysis here.

 

Dark Reading's Quick Hits delivers a brief synopsis and summary of the significance of breaking news events. For more information from the original source of the news item, please follow the link provided in this article. View Full Bio
 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Wes_Spencer1
50%
50%
Wes_Spencer1,
User Rank: Author
9/1/2020 | 9:01:19 AM
Agreed!
We've seen a huge (and growing) number of Emotet campaigns also associated with qbot. Seems there's no end in sight. 
Edge-DRsplash-10-edge-articles
7 Old IT Things Every New InfoSec Pro Should Know
Joan Goodchild, Staff Editor,  4/20/2021
News
Cloud-Native Businesses Struggle With Security
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  5/6/2021
Commentary
Defending Against Web Scraping Attacks
Rob Simon, Principal Security Consultant at TrustedSec,  5/7/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
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-2021-31922
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-14
An HTTP Request Smuggling vulnerability in Pulse Secure Virtual Traffic Manager before 21.1 could allow an attacker to smuggle an HTTP request through an HTTP/2 Header. This vulnerability is resolved in 21.1, 20.3R1, 20.2R1, 20.1R2, 19.2R4, and 18.2R3.
CVE-2021-32051
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-14
Hexagon G!nius Auskunftsportal before 5.0.0.0 allows SQL injection via the GiPWorkflow/Service/DownloadPublicFile id parameter.
CVE-2021-32615
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-13
Piwigo 11.4.0 allows admin/user_list_backend.php order[0][dir] SQL Injection.
CVE-2021-33026
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-13
The Flask-Caching extension through 1.10.1 for Flask relies on Pickle for serialization, which may lead to remote code execution or local privilege escalation. If an attacker gains access to cache storage (e.g., filesystem, Memcached, Redis, etc.), they can construct a crafted payload, poison the ca...
CVE-2021-31876
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-13
Bitcoin Core 0.12.0 through 0.21.1 does not properly implement the replacement policy specified in BIP125, which makes it easier for attackers to trigger a loss of funds, or a denial of service attack against downstream projects such as Lightning network nodes. An unconfirmed child transaction with ...