April 24, 2024

Woburn, MA – Might 19, 2023 – Kaspersky researchers have supplied additional particulars on the CommonMagic marketing campaign, which was first noticed in March focusing on firms within the Russo-Ukrainian battle space. The brand new analysis reveals extra subtle malicious actions from the identical risk actor. The investigation recognized that the newly-discovered framework has expanded its victimology to incorporate organizations in Central and Western Ukraine. Kaspersky consultants have additionally linked the unknown actor to earlier APT campaigns, akin to Operation BugDrop and Operation Groundbai (Prikormka).

In March 2023, Kaspersky reported a brand new APT marketing campaign within the Russo-Ukrainian battle space. This marketing campaign, named CommonMagic, makes use of PowerMagic and CommonMagic implants to conduct espionage actions. Energetic since September 2021, it employs a beforehand unidentified malware to gather information from focused entities. Though the risk actor chargeable for this assault remained unknown on the time, Kaspersky consultants have persevered with their investigation, tracing the unknown exercise again to forgotten campaigns as a way to collect additional insights.

The just lately uncovered marketing campaign utilized a modular framework referred to as CloudWizard. Kaspersky’s analysis recognized a complete of 9 modules inside this framework, every chargeable for distinct malicious actions akin to gathering information, keylogging, capturing screenshots, recording microphone enter, and stealing passwords. Notably, one of many modules focuses on exfiltrating information from Gmail accounts. By extracting Gmail cookies from browser databases, this module can entry and smuggle exercise logs, contact lists, and all e-mail messages related to the focused accounts.

Moreover, the researchers have uncovered an expanded sufferer distribution within the marketing campaign. Whereas the earlier targets have been primarily positioned within the Donetsk, Luhansk, and Crimea areas, the scope has now widened to incorporate people, diplomatic entities, and analysis organizations in Western and Central Ukraine.

After in depth analysis into CloudWizard, Kaspersky consultants have made important progress in attributing it to a recognized risk actor. They’ve noticed notable similarities between CloudWizard and two beforehand documented campaigns: Operation Groundbait and Operation BugDrop. These similarities embody code similarities, file naming and itemizing patterns, internet hosting by Ukrainian internet hosting companies, and shared sufferer profiles in Western and Central Ukraine, in addition to the battle space in Japanese Europe.

Furthermore, CloudWizard additionally reveals resemblances to the just lately reported marketing campaign CommonMagic. Some sections of the code are an identical, they make use of the identical encryption library, observe an analogous file naming format, and share sufferer places inside the Japanese European battle space.

Based mostly on these findings, Kaspersky consultants have concluded that the malicious campaigns of Prikormka, Operation Groundbait, Operation BugDrop, CommonMagic, and CloudWizard might all be attributed to the identical lively risk actor.  

“The risk actor chargeable for these operations has demonstrated a persistent and ongoing dedication to cyberespionage, repeatedly enhancing their toolset and focusing on organizations of curiosity for over fifteen years,” stated Georgy Kucherin, safety researcher at Kaspersky’s World Analysis and Evaluation Crew. “Geopolitical elements proceed to be a major motivator for APT assaults and, given the prevailing pressure within the Russo-Ukrainian battle space, we anticipate that this actor will stick with its operations for the foreseeable future.”

Learn the complete report in regards to the CloudWizard marketing campaign on Securelist.

To be able to keep away from falling sufferer to a focused assault by a recognized or unknown risk actor, Kaspersky researchers advocate implementing the next measures:

  • Present your SOC group with entry to the most recent risk intelligence (TI). The Kaspersky Threat Intelligence Portal is a single level of entry for the corporate’s TI, offering it with cyberattack information and insights gathered by Kaspersky spanning over 20 years.
  • Upskill your cybersecurity group to deal with the most recent focused threats with Kaspersky online training developed by GReAT consultants
  • For endpoint degree detection, investigation, and well timed remediation of incidents, implement EDR options akin to Kaspersky Endpoint Detection and Response
  • Along with adopting important endpoint safety, implement a corporate-grade safety answer that detects superior threats on the community degree at an early stage, akin to Kaspersky Anti Targeted Attack Platform
  • As many focused assaults begin with phishing or different social engineering strategies, introduce safety consciousness coaching and train sensible abilities to your group – for instance, by the Kaspersky Automated Security Awareness Platform