Tibetan organisations attacked by Chinese spearphishing

Powered by SC Magazine
 

Messages contained remote access trojan.

A range of spearphishing attacks sent allegedly from China against Tibetan organisations have been detected.

AlienVault researchers who discovered the attacks said Tibetan activist organisations including the Central Tibet Administration and International Campaign for Tibet were targeted.
 
The messages carried information on the Tibetan religious festival Kalachakra Initiation, and included a malicious PDF attachment that exploited a patched stack overflow Microsoft vulnerability.
 
It executed the Gh0st remote access Trojan which enabled a range of functions from data exfiltration to activating a target computer's microphone. 
 
AlienVault head of labs Jaime Blasco said the attack used command-and-control servers to grant remote control of infected machines and change the structure and purpose of the malware program.
 
That allowed attackers to remotely adapt the infection in response to changing circumstances, such as updates to anti-virus software. VirusTotal found that these obfuscation steps meant the infection was detected by just two anti-virus vendors at the time of the attacks.
 
The attacks likely originated from the same group of Chinese hackers that launched the Nitro attacks against chemical and defence companies late last year, according to researchers. They said the tool appeared to be the same variant used in the Nitro attacks.
 
The digital certificate used to sign the tool was revoked by VeriSign in December last year.
 
AlienVault previously detected Chinese attacks against US government agencies, including the US Department of Defense which used a new strain of the Sykipot malware to compromise smartcards.

This article originally appeared at scmagazineuk.com

Copyright © SC Magazine, UK edition


Tibetan organisations attacked by Chinese spearphishing
 
 
 
Top Stories
Inside the stalemate on Australia's piracy code
Still not registered almost five months on.
 
IT staff outline deep anger in Macquarie Uni survey
‘Morale at lowest point in a decade’.
 
Cost blowout to push NBN past $41bn budget
But government funding cap to remain.
 
 
Sign up to receive iTnews email bulletins
   FOLLOW US...
Latest Comments
Polls
New Windows 10 users, are you upgrading from...




   |   View results
Windows 8
  48%
 
Windows 7
  44%
 
Windows XP
  4%
 
Another operating system
  2%
 
Windows Vista
  1%
TOTAL VOTES: 676

Vote