Home Security New campaign targets Lebanese and UAE government sites
New campaign targets Lebanese and UAE government sites Pixabay

A campaign that targets government domains in Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates, as well as the private Lebanese airline, Middle East Airlines, has been uncovered by Cisco's Talos Intelligence Group, which claims that the attackers appear to have studied their intended victims' networks well enough to remain inconspicuous.

Researchers Warren Mercer and Paul Rascagneres said the campaign, which they had named DNSpionage, appeared to be a by a new group unconnected to any previous similar attacks.

Two fake malicious websites were used in the campaign to target possible victims using infected Microsoft Office documents which contained embedded macros.

Apart from the above attacks, the actors also used the same IP to redirect the DNS of legitimate .gov and private domains, carefully generating certificates for the domains that were redirected.

"During each DNS compromise, the actor carefully generated Let's Encrypt certificates for the redirected domains. These certificates provide X.509 certificates for TLS free of charge to the user. We don't know at this time if the DNS redirections were successful," Mercer and Rascagneres wrote.

The two malicious websites used were hr-wipro[.]com and hr-suncor[.]com which redirected to wipro.com and suncor.com.

"At this time, we don't know how the target received these links. The attackers most likely sent the malicious document via email as part of a spear-phishing campaign, but it also could have circulated via social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, in an attempt to legitimise the opportunity for a new job," the researchers said.

One of the Lebanese Government domains that was targeted was that belonging to the Ministry of Finance.

"We are highly confident that both of these campaigns came from the same actor," Mercer and Rascagneres noted.

"However, we do not know much about the location of the actors and their exact motivations. It is clear that this threat actor was able to redirect DNS from government-owned domains in two different countries over the course of two months, as well as a national Lebanese airline.

"They were able to work from the system's point of view by using a Windows malware, as well as the network, by using DNS exfiltration and redirection. It is unclear if these DNS redirection attacks were successful, but the attackers have kept up their efforts, launching five attacks so far this year, including one in the past two weeks."

The detailed analysis is here.

47 REASONS TO ATTEND YOW! 2018

With 4 keynotes + 33 talks + 10 in-depth workshops from world-class speakers, YOW! is your chance to learn more about the latest software trends, practices and technologies and interact with many of the people who created them.

Speakers this year include Anita Sengupta (Rocket Scientist and Sr. VP Engineering at Hyperloop One), Brendan Gregg (Sr. Performance Architect Netflix), Jessica Kerr (Developer, Speaker, Writer and Lead Engineer at Atomist) and Kent Beck (Author Extreme Programming, Test Driven Development).

YOW! 2018 is a great place to network with the best and brightest software developers in Australia. You’ll be amazed by the great ideas (and perhaps great talent) you’ll take back to the office!

Register now for YOW! Conference

· Sydney 29-30 November
· Brisbane 3-4 December
· Melbourne 6-7 December

Register now for YOW! Workshops

· Sydney 27-28 November
· Melbourne 4-5 December

REGISTER NOW!

LEARN HOW TO REDUCE YOUR RISK OF A CYBER ATTACK

Australia is a cyber espionage hot spot.

As we automate, script and move to the cloud, more and more businesses are reliant on infrastructure that has the high potential to be exposed to risk.

It only takes one awry email to expose an accounts’ payable process, and for cyber attackers to cost a business thousands of dollars.

In the free white paper ‘6 Steps to Improve your Business Cyber Security’ you’ll learn some simple steps you should be taking to prevent devastating and malicious cyber attacks from destroying your business.

Cyber security can no longer be ignored, in this white paper you’ll learn:

· How does business security get breached?
· What can it cost to get it wrong?
· 6 actionable tips

DOWNLOAD NOW!

Sam Varghese

website statistics

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the sitecame 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.

 

Popular News

 

Telecommunications

 

Sponsored News

 

 

 

 

Connect