Every major world crisis represents a new opportunity for fraudsters to take advantage of our good faith and the Ebola virus is no different. Different advisories have been issued cautioning banks and other organizations to reemphasize their customers the necessary skepticism with opening, clicking, or answering Ebola-based notifications. Read more
Unsurprisingly, Bash has been dominating countless new sites over the past week. I recently spoke to Penny Crosman with American Banker and she wrote a story on what bankers need to know about Bash – it’s a must read.
Shellshock - BASH Exploitation Likely to Affect Large Hosting Providers and Sites, Be Used to Create Botnets
The new Shellshock vulnerability that affects the bash shell is one of the kind of vulnerabilities that makes old infosec guys chuckle. The bash vulnerability and its exploitation is not a marvel of complexity. We'll get into the specifics of how it works shortly. But first, let's address who's at risk. Read more
Home Depot Breach: Time to Value of Black Market Cards Changes as Banks and Retailers Improve Detection
With the latest retail breach at Home Depot, attention has again turned to credit card black markets, the clearinghouses that sell these stolen cards to the highest bidder. These are no fly-by-night operation. In fact, the largest of these markets have some sophisticated features that any e-commerce site would tout, including:
• integrated Bitcoin funding
• good customer support
• good commerce features
On Monday, the US-CERT (United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team) issued an updated advisory, warning that the ‘Backoff’ Point-of-Sale malware continues to evolve. And just today, UPS confirmed that it is the newest likely victim of Backoff. US-CERT has now seen five variants of ‘Backoff’, each with notable modifications, and the malware has been found in at least three separate forensic investigations. They note that the variants are largely undetected by AV vendors, and recommend that in lieu of such protection, organizations should monitor for ‘indicators of compromise’ (IOCs) to determine if they have been infected. Read more
Malware Snifula Targets Banks in North & Latin America Using Windows Certificate Store API Functions
The Snifula family of malware has been making a name for itself recently in Japan, targeting multi-national and smaller regional financial institutions alike. The effectiveness of this kind of malware is putting banks at risk in other parts of the world too, including North and South America. Our research indicates that most financial institutions in the Western hemisphere have already been attacked by some variant of Snifula.
Last week, reports flooded security forums and publications highlighting an increase in the rate of a fraud attack named Operation Emmental.
The threat type was first noticed by security companies approximately 5 months ago, but the recent rise in successful attacks against mobile banking users has been alarming and underlined the effectiveness of the attack. The fact that the majority of the successful attacks were aimed at Swiss banks led to the name of Operation Emmental, referring to the Swiss cheese containing holes, suggesting imperfections in security.
Over the last two years, we have seen a tremendous increase in mobile malware, which grew 167 percent in the past year, according to the June 2014 McAfee Labs Threat Report.
Here are two major reasons why mobile malware is increasingly the preferred method of attack for fraudsters:
1. As EMV technology is deployed in the US, the amount of fraud attributed to counterfeit cards will decrease.
2. Telecommunications providers will no longer allow premium text message services to bill customers, lowering the volume of fraud via premium SMS messages.
This week we were greeted with news of a new banking trojan malware variant named Zberb. This trojan was described breathlessly by the security community as an “evil monster” and a “hybrid beast” in one hyperbole-laced article. Why is Zberb so terrifying and why should we take all of our money out of the bank, convert it to bullion and bury it in the yard? Well, from a technical perspective, Zberb was designed and built by combining features already in the wild from two major bank trojan families, Zeus/Zbot and Carberb.
Both of these trojans have been in the wild for a long time and have been consistently improved with new attack vectors, new detection migitations and new communications mechanisms.
One of the hardest responsibilities to tackle when it comes to fraud management is identifying and anticipating emergent attacks that seek to exploit your security controls. When I was in charge of rooting out fraud at a well-known financial services company, I spent a lot of time and money designing and deploying fraud solutions, as well as establishing proactive mitigation efforts to help identify threats in their planning stages. I know what it’s like to be on the client side of the fraud protection fence, regularly evaluating tools to see which ones are effective and which are a waste of time and money.