Menu
New attack campaign against SMBs uses a botnet to deliver PoS malware

New attack campaign against SMBs uses a botnet to deliver PoS malware

A group of attackers uses the Gorynych botnet to deploy point-of-sale malware and steal payment card data

A group of sophisticated attackers are repurposing penetration testing tools to break into the networks of small and medium-size businesses worldwide with the goal of infecting point-of-sale systems with malware.

The new attack campaign started in September and has been dubbed operation Black Atlas by researchers from antivirus vendor Trend Micro. The attackers use a wide set of tools to scan the Internet and identify potential weak spots in the networks of various organizations, the researchers said.

Their toolset includes port scanners, brute-force password guessing tools, SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) scanners, remote desktop viewers and other attack applications that are easy to find on the Internet.

"Networks with weak password practices are likely to fall victim to this initial penetration testing stage," the Trend Micro researchers said in a blog post.

If the attackers manage to break in, they use additional malware and tools to move laterally across the network and compromise PoS systems. While doing this, they steal various credentials along the way, including email and Facebook passwords.

Once they have access to a PoS system, the attackers install a so-called memory scraping program. These are malware applications that scan the system's RAM for payment card details that are passed from the card reader to the retail software.

The Trend Micro researchers have seen the Black Atlas attackers using multiple PoS malware programs including Alina, NewPOSThings and BlackPOS. The latter was also used in the 2013 attack against Target that resulted in the compromise of around 40 million payment card details.

Because BlackPOS does not have an online data exfiltration method and instead saves the card details to a local text file, the Black Atlas attackers are combining it with a botnet-type backdoor program known as Gorynych or Diamond Fox.

"Gorynych now grabs that text file and does an HTTP POST to complete the data exfiltration," the Trend Micro researchers said. The same botnet is also used to deploy BlackPOS in the first place.

The attackers have compromised businesses around the world, including an unnamed healthcare organization in the U.S., which allowed Trend Micro to perform a deeper analysis. The most affected countries are the U.S., Australia, India, Taiwan, Germany and the U.K.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Events

Why experience is the new battleground for partners

Join us for an exclusive webinar, in association with Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Technology Services Industry Association (TSIA) and learn about the latest industry insights and how technology services continue to evolve to deliver differentiated value, and how partners can be successful in 2021 and beyond.

Featured

Slideshows

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

Hundreds of leaders from the New Zealand IT industry gathered at the Hilton in Auckland on 17 November to celebrate the finest female talent in the Kiwi channel and recognise the winners of the Reseller News Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) 2020.

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards
Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

The leading female front runners of the New Zealand ICT industry joined together for the annual Reseller News Women in ICT Awards event at the Hilton in Auckland, during which hundreds of guests celebrated 13 outstanding individuals who won awards, chosen from more than 50 finalists representing over 30 organisations.

Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards
Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners

Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners

More than 500 channel leaders gathered in Auckland on 21 October at the ​Reseller News Innovation Awards ​2020 to celebrate the achievements of the New Zealand technology industry's top partners, start-ups, vendors, distributors and individuals.

Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners
Show Comments