Wednesday, 17 May 2017

North Korea Possibly Behind Ransomware Attacks|| WannaCry


Considered the world’s biggest ransomware attack to date, WannaCry went on rampage over the weekend, hitting targets in 150 countries and infecting over 230,000 computers at its peak. The spread slowed down on Monday, but not before new malware variations emerged.
The ransomware’s weak point was a hardcoded domain used for sandbox evasion, which also served as a kill-switch: once the domain was registered, the malware no longer infected new machines.

"An earlier WannaCry ransomware sample shows code similarities with malware used by a North Korea-linked hacking group responsible for multiple financial and destructive attacks, security researchers say."

Symantec, on the other hand, was also able to pinpoint exactly the Lazarus tools the older WannaCry samples share similarities with. “This SSL implementation uses a specific sequence of 75 ciphers which to date have only been seen across Lazarus tools (including Contopee and Brambul) and WannaCry variants,” the company said.

Last year, Symantec linked the Banswift Trojan that was used in the Bangladesh attack to manipulate SWIFT transactions with early variants of Contopee, which was already known to be used by attackers associated with Lazarus. In their report on Op Blockbuster, BAE Systems also suggested the Bangladesh heist and the 2014 Sony attack were linked.


“Symantec identified the presence of tools exclusively used by Lazarus on machines also infected with earlier versions of WannaCry. These earlier variants of WannaCry did not have the ability to spread via SMB. The Lazarus tools could potentially have been used as method of propagating WannaCry, but this is unconfirmed,” the security firm continues.