ToxicEye operators are making use of an instant messaging app named Telegram to control and maintain their malware. This RAT exploits this app as a part of C2 infrastructure, and they are able to conduct data threats excessively due to this.
What has happened?
A researcher from Check Point Research has been tracking the RAT and has detected it in the wild associated with around 1300 attacks in the past three months.
The chain attack starts with the creation of both a telegram account and bot. The bot is inserted in the configuration of the malware in this case and has malicious intentions.
- Phishing emails with the attached malicious documents are sent to the victims. ToxicEye is deployed if the subsequent .exe file is downloaded to the device.
- The system where the malicious payload is deployed can be targeted using a telegram bot. This bot is able to create a connection between the user’s device back to the C2 of the attacker using telegram.
- The RAT can scan the device and steal sensitive information such as credentials of the user, details of the computer OS. It also has the ability to kill the PC process and hijack task management.
- A telegram channel named Hack Boss was used to spread malware for other hackers
- Telegram was also used by cybercriminals to steal from food delivery services and restaurants.
ToxicEye is the latest malware which telegram as C2 and it is possible that these kinds of threats evolve further in near future. The infection of this RAT can be detected by searching for C:\Users\ToxicEye\rat[.]exe file. These files should be removed immediately from the system.
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Topic- The US and other organizations are actively targeted by Russian Hackers
The FBI, CISA and DHS have issued warning against the ongoing active attacks which are coordinated by the Russian Foreign Intelligence Services (SVR) or APT29. These attacks are targeted towards the US and foreign organization. Additionally, the SVR was detected to have connection with the SolarWinds Orion supply chain attack which occurred recently.
About the warning-
The joint advisory provided some additional information on the APT29 tactic, techniques and the tools. The capabilities of the attacks were also mentioned. The federal agencies highlight the following-
- Leveraging Zero-Day Vulnerability- a zero-day exploit CVE-2019-19781 was used by SVR against a VPN to be able to gain access inside the network.
- Password Spraying- The cybercriminals used password spraying to identify the weak password linked with the administrative account in one of the large compromises in 2018.
- The WELLMESS Malware- Intrusion on the government of UK, Canada, and the US were attempted using malware with the name WELLMESS in 2020.
The recent attacks were targeted at the government and the extraction of intelligence information of these entities. They aim at the government networks, think tanks, analysis of the policies of the organizations, etc.
CISA has reported that APT29 will continue to attack the government and collect intelligence from US and other foreign entities with cyber exploitation. It is using exploitation techniques and stealthy intrusions. Recommendation has been shared as security alert that should be followed by organizations all over the world.