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.

Vulnerabilities / Threats

2/23/2018
03:30 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
LinkedIn
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

'OMG': New Mirai Variant Converts IoT Devices into Proxy Servers

The new malware also can turn bots into DDoS attack machines, says Fortinet.

Numerous versions of the Mirai IoT bot malware have surfaced since the creators of the original code - one of whom is a former Rutgers University student - first released it in Sept. 2016.

The latest iteration of Mirai is dubbed "OMG," and turns infected IoT devices into proxy servers while also retaining the original malware's DDoS attack capabilities.

Security researchers at Fortinet recently encountered the new Mirai variant, and say the modification likely provides the malware authors another way to generate money from the code. Satori, another IoT bot malware based on Mirai code, was discovered in December and is designed for mining cryptocurrencies rather than launching DDoS attacks.

"One way to earn money with proxy servers is to sell the access to these servers to other cybercriminals," Fortinet said in a blog post this week. Proxies give cybercriminals a way to remain anonymous when carrying out malicious activity like cyber theft, or breaking into systems.

"Adversaries could also spread multiple attacks through a single source. They could get around some types of IP blocking and filtering," as well, according to a Fortinet spokesperson.

OMG uses an open source tool called 3proxy as its proxy server. For the proxy to work properly, OMG includes two strings containing a command for adding and removing certain firewalls rules so as to allow traffic on two random ports, Fortinet said. OMG also packs most of the functionality of the original Mirai malware, including the ability to look for open ports and kill any processes related to telnet, http, and SSH and to use telnet brute-force logins to spread, Fortinet said.

When installed on a vulnerable IoT device, OMG initiates a connection to a command-and-control server and identifies the system as a new bot. Based on the data message, the C&C server then instructs the bot malware whether to use the infected IoT device as a proxy server or for DDoS attacks - or to terminate the connection.

According to Fortinet, OMG is the first Mirai variant that incorporates both the original DDoS functionality as well as the ability to set up proxy servers on IoT devices. 

"The simplest and most effective uses of a proxy server are to cover the origins of an attack, reconnaissance activity, or for simply re-routing a user's search for information to sites controlled by someone pushing a specific agenda," says Gabriel Gumbs, vice president of product strategy at STEALTHbits Technologies.

IoT bots can also be used in disinformation campaigns, he says.

"It is now known that foreign adversaries used stolen US identities to post information on social media," Gumbs says. In the same manner, "a compromised IoT device on a home network, such as a NEST or Samsung Smart fridge, could be modified to post messages that would appear to originate from a legitimate user's location, using their identity."

Related Content:

 

 

Black Hat Asia returns to Singapore with hands-on technical Trainings, cutting-edge Briefings, Arsenal open-source tool demonstrations, top-tier solutions and service providers in the Business Hall. Click for information on the conference and to register.

Jai Vijayan is a seasoned technology reporter with over 20 years of experience in IT trade journalism. He was most recently a Senior Editor at Computerworld, where he covered information security and data privacy issues for the publication. Over the course of his 20-year ... View Full Bio
 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Threaded  |  Newest First  |  Oldest First
Commentary
How SolarWinds Busted Up Our Assumptions About Code Signing
Dr. Jethro Beekman, Technical Director,  3/3/2021
News
'ObliqueRAT' Now Hides Behind Images on Compromised Websites
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  3/2/2021
News
Attackers Turn Struggling Software Projects Into Trojan Horses
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  2/26/2021
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-2021-28042
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
Deutsche Post Mailoptimizer 4.3 before 2020-11-09 allows Directory Traversal via a crafted ZIP archive to the Upload feature or the MO Connect component. This can lead to remote code execution.
CVE-2021-28041
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
ssh-agent in OpenSSH before 8.5 has a double free that may be relevant in a few less-common scenarios, such as unconstrained agent-socket access on a legacy operating system, or the forwarding of an agent to an attacker-controlled host.
CVE-2021-3377
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
The npm package ansi_up converts ANSI escape codes into HTML. In ansi_up v4, ANSI escape codes can be used to create HTML hyperlinks. Due to insufficient URL sanitization, this feature is affected by a cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability. This issue is fixed in v5.0.0.
CVE-2021-3420
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
A flaw was found in newlib in versions prior to 4.0.0. Improper overflow validation in the memory allocation functions mEMALIGn, pvALLOc, nano_memalign, nano_valloc, nano_pvalloc could case an integer overflow, leading to an allocation of a small buffer and then to a heap-based buffer overflow.
CVE-2020-29020
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
Improper Access Control vulnerability in web service of Secomea SiteManager allows remote attacker to access the web UI from the internet using the configured credentials. This issue affects: Secomea SiteManager All versions prior to 9.4.620527004 on Hardware.