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

'Stresspaint' Targets Facebook Credentials

New malware variant goes after login credentials for popular Facebook pages.

Malware posing as a stress-relieving application has added to the stress of tens of thousands of Facebook users. And while this campaign appears to now have gone dormant, signs point to the possibility of more of this stress-related malware to come in the future.

Researchers at Radware found the malware, called Stresspaint, targeting the user credentials of Facebook users.

"We saw some indicators of information being stolen from a machine and while doing that we found an interesting command and control mechanism," says Adi Raff, security research team lead at Radware.

The threat actors weren't looking for just any Facebook users, either. "They were generally looking for Facebook accounts controlling a Facebook page or that had a payment method associated with them," says Raff. They also were looking for "pages with a lot of followers," he says.

Stresspoint gets delivered either via email or Facebook message. The link portends to be for a legitimate stress-relieving art program called "Relieve Stress Paint" to be downloaded from a legitimate website, AOL.com. In reality, the link is to a Unicode site that appears to be AOL, but in actuality leads to user to a malicious app store.

Once downloaded, a paint program runs on the user machine. While it is running, though, malware is sorting through the user's data looking for saved Facebook credentials or login cookies. Once found, the data is exfiltrated to the C&C server, which is based on an open source Chinese CMS named Layuicms2.0.

Since the malware doesn't look for general user credentials or other data, there are many security programs that won't trigger on its behavior, allowing it to fly under the radar on some user systems. During the initial infection period, approximately 10,000 systems per day were infected, a number that puts this on par with successful botnet campaigns. 

Raff says that there are indications that the group responsible for the Stresspaint malware is more than a collection of script kiddies. "Just a few hours before we pushed the information we saw a variant, [so] it could be a work in progress," Raff says. "Being able to infect so many machines in a short time takes skill — this was not the first time these people did it. They knew what they were doing." 

Once Radware published initial results of their research, the attackers took notice. "When we released the blog about it, [the threat actors] saw it and the infection rate went down. A few hours later, the C&C server went down," Raff says.

Even so, Raff says the server could easily be re-established. That, and a section in the C&C CMS dedicated to Amazon, leads Raff and the research team to believe that the group has more plans for both the network and the malware.

Nothing in the Stresspaint campaign is so novel as to require new technology or methods to avoid infection. The researchers counsel user training, link awareness (including Unicode visibility) and two-factor authentication as basic web hygiene steps that will significantly reduce the chance of additional stress from Stresspaint infection.

Related Content:

Interop ITX 2018

Join Dark Reading LIVE for two cybersecurity summits at Interop ITX. Learn from the industry’s most knowledgeable IT security experts. Check out the security track here. Register with Promo Code DR200 and save $200.

Curtis Franklin Jr. is Senior Editor at Dark Reading. In this role he focuses on product and technology coverage for the publication. In addition he works on audio and video programming for Dark Reading and contributes to activities at Interop ITX, Black Hat, INsecurity, and ... View Full Bio
 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 11/19/2020
New Proposed DNS Security Features Released
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  11/19/2020
How to Identify Cobalt Strike on Your Network
Zohar Buber, Security Analyst,  11/18/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: A GONG is as good as a cyber attack.
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
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-25660
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-23
A flaw was found in the Cephx authentication protocol in versions before 15.2.6 and before 14.2.14, where it does not verify Ceph clients correctly and is then vulnerable to replay attacks in Nautilus. This flaw allows an attacker with access to the Ceph cluster network to authenticate with the Ceph...
CVE-2020-25688
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-23
A flaw was found in rhacm versions before 2.0.5 and before 2.1.0. Two internal service APIs were incorrectly provisioned using a test certificate from the source repository. This would result in all installations using the same certificates. If an attacker could observe network traffic internal to a...
CVE-2020-25696
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-23
A flaw was found in the psql interactive terminal of PostgreSQL in versions before 13.1, before 12.5, before 11.10, before 10.15, before 9.6.20 and before 9.5.24. If an interactive psql session uses \gset when querying a compromised server, the attacker can execute arbitrary code as the operating sy...
CVE-2020-26229
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-23
TYPO3 is an open source PHP based web content management system. In TYPO3 from version 10.4.0, and before version 10.4.10, RSS widgets are susceptible to XML external entity processing. This vulnerability is reasonable, but is theoretical - it was not possible to actually reproduce the vulnerability...
CVE-2020-28984
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-23
prive/formulaires/configurer_preferences.php in SPIP before 3.2.8 does not properly validate the couleur, display, display_navigation, display_outils, imessage, and spip_ecran parameters.