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Specialists Details on Maui Ransomware Attack by North Korean Hackers 2022

Malware Ransomeware Attack
Malware Ransomeware Attack

The primary ever incident probably involving the ransomware household often called Maui occurred on April 15, 2021, aimed toward an unnamed Japanese housing firm.

The disclosure from Kaspersky arrives a month after U.S. cybersecurity and intelligence companies issued an advisory about using the ransomware pressure by North Korean government-backed hackers to focus on the healthcare sector since not less than Might 2021.

A lot of the information about its modus operandi got here from incident response actions and trade evaluation of a Maui pattern that exposed a scarcity of “a number of key options” usually related to ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) operations.

Not solely is Maui designed to be manually executed by a distant actor by way of a command-line interface, it is also notable for not together with a ransom be aware to supply restoration directions.

Subsequently, the Justice Division introduced the seizure of $500,000 value of Bitcoin that had been extorted from a number of organizations, together with two healthcare services within the U.S. states of Kansas and Colorado, by utilizing the ransomware pressure.

Whereas these assaults have been pinned on North Korean superior persistent risk teams, the Russian cybersecurity agency has linked the cybercrime with low to medium confidence to a Lazarus subgroup often called Andariel, often known as Operation Troy, Silent Chollima, and Stonefly.

“Roughly ten hours previous to deploying Maui to the preliminary goal system [on April 15], the group deployed a variant of the well-known Dtrack malware to the goal, preceded by 3proxy months earlier,” Kaspersky researchers Kurt Baumgartner and Seongsu Park said.

Dtrack, additionally referred to as Valefor and Preft, is a distant entry trojan utilized by the Stonefly group in its espionage assaults to exfiltrate delicate info.

Malware Ransomeware Attack
Malware Ransomeware Assault

It is value mentioning that the backdoor, alongside 3proxy, was deployed by the risk actor towards an engineering agency that works within the vitality and navy sectors in February 2022 by exploiting the Log4Shell vulnerability.

“Stonefly makes a speciality of mounting extremely selective focused assaults towards targets that would yield intelligence to help strategically essential sectors corresponding to vitality, aerospace, and navy tools,” Symantec, a division of Broadcom Software program, said in April.

Moreover, Kaspersky stated that the Dtrack pattern used within the Japanese Maui incident was additionally used to breach a number of victims in India, Vietnam, and Russia from December 2021 to February 2021.

“Our analysis means that the actor is somewhat opportunistic and will compromise any firm all over the world, no matter their line of enterprise, so long as it enjoys good monetary standing,” the researchers stated.

This is not Andariel’s first tryst with ransomware as a method to reap financial positive factors for the sanctions-hit nation. In June 2021, a South Korean entity was revealed to have been contaminated by file-encrypting malware following an elaborate multi-stage an infection process that commenced with a weaponized Phrase doc.

Then final month, Microsoft disclosed that an rising risk cluster related to Andariel has been utilizing a ransomware pressure often called H0lyGh0st in cyberattacks concentrating on small companies since September 2021.

 

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