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Wednesday, 25 October 2017 06:44

New ransomware strain spreads in some European countries Featured

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A new strain of Windows ransomware, dubbed Bad Rabbit, is spreading in eastern Europe through drive-by attacks, the security firm Kaspersky Lab reported overnight.

The infection occurs while visiting a legitimate website. A malware dropper is downloaded from the threat actor’s infrastructure.

"No exploits were used, so the victim would have to manually execute the malware dropper, which pretends to be an Adobe Flash installer," Kaspersky said.

The company said it had detected a number of compromised website, all of which were news or media outlets.

The outbreak appeared to computers in Russia and also in Ukraine, Turkey and Germany.

bad rabbit ransomware big

Kaspersky Lab's Orkhan Mamedov, Fedor Sinitsyn and Anton Ivanov said that Bad Rabbit appeared to be similar to the NotPetya strain of ransomware that hit Europe in June.

"An interesting detail that we noticed when analysing the sample of this threat: it looks like the criminals behind this malware are fans of the famous books & TV show series Game Of Thrones. Some of the strings used throughout the code are the names of different characters from this series," they wrote.

Cisco's Talos Intelligence Group said Bad Rabbit modified the master boot record of the infected system's hard drive to redirect the boot process into the malware author's code for the purposes of displaying a ransom note (seen above)

"The ransom note that is displayed following the system reboot is... very similar to the ransom notes displayed by other ransomware variants, namely Petya, that we have observed in other notable attacks this year," the Group said.


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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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