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Incidents|Flame: Bunny, Frog, Munch and BeetleJuice…

Kaspersky Lab Expert
Posted May 29, 20:30  GMT
Tags: Flame, Cyber weapon, Cyber espionage

As already mentioned in the previous blog post about Flame, the volume of its code and functionality are so great that it will take several months for a complete analysis. We’re planning on continually disclosing in our publications the most important and interesting details of its functionality as we reveal them.

At the moment we are receiving many inquiries about how to check systems for a Flame infection. Of course the simplest answer, for us, is to advise to use Kaspersky Lab Antivirus or Internet Security. We successfully detect and delete all possible modifications of the main module and extra components of Flame.

However, for those who want to carry out a detailed check themselves, at the end of this article we will give the necessary recommendations and advice.


The main module of Flame is a DLL file called mssecmgr.ocx. We’ve discovered two modifications of this module. Most of the infected machines contained its “big” version, 6 Mb in size, and carrying and deploying additional modules. The smaller version’s size is only 900 Kb and contains no additional modules. After installation, the small module connects to one of the C&C servers and tries to download and install the remaining components from there.

Mssecmgr may be called different names on actual infected machines, depending on the method of infection and the current internal state of the malware (installation, replication, upgrade), e.g., wavesup3.drv, ~zff042.ocx, msdclr64.ocx, etc.

Complete analysis of the mssecmgr module will follow in our upcoming blog posts.

The first activation of this file is initiated by one of the external features - either Windows WMI tools using a MOF file if the MS10-061 exploit is used, or using a BAT file:

s1 = new ActiveXObject("Wscript.Shell");
s1.Run("%SYSTEMROOT%\\system32\\rundll32.exe msdclr64.ocx,DDEnumCallback");

(source code of MOF file, svchostevt.mof)

Virus Watch|Foncy is dead. Long live Mania

Kaspersky Lab Expert
Posted May 29, 08:32  GMT
Tags: Mobile Malware, Google Android

The story of the Foncy SMS Trojan started during the fall of 2011. This piece of malware was one of the first SMS Trojans targeting users outside Russia and China. Potential victims were from various countries in Europe, North America and Africa. In the middle of January 2012 Foncy was updated: it started to spread together with an IRC bot and a root exploit. But the end of the Foncy story was very close because in February two suspected authors of this malware were arrested in Paris: you can read the story here in French and here in English. Since then we haven’t found any new modifications of this piece of malware.

So, Foncy is dead. And what is Mania? Mania is an SMS Trojan which currently only targets users of Android from France and its code is very similar to the code of the Foncy malware. The first sample of Mania (Trojan-SMS.AndroidOS.Mania) was found approximately at the same time when the Foncy IRC bot was discovered (during the first half of January). After that new variants of Mania appeared in February, March, April and May.

We haven’t found any traces of Mania on Android Market Google Play. It seems that it is spread via file sharing web sites as popular legitimate applications such as PhoneLocator Pro, BlackList Pro, Enhanced SMS and Caller ID, CoPilot Live Europe, Settings Profiles Full, Advanced Call Blocker and Kaspersky Mobile Security.


Duqu and Stuxnet raised the stakes in the cyber battles being fought in the Middle East – but now we’ve found what might be the most sophisticated cyber weapon yet unleashed. The ‘Flame’ cyber espionage worm came to the attention of our experts at Kaspersky Lab after the UN’s International Telecommunication Union came to us for help in finding an unknown piece of malware which was deleting sensitive information across the Middle East. While searching for that code – nicknamed Wiper – we discovered a new malware codenamed Worm.Win32.Flame.

Flame shares many characteristics with notorious cyber weapons Duqu and Stuxnet: while its features are different, the geography and careful targeting of attacks coupled with the usage of specific software vulnerabilities seems to put it alongside those familiar ‘super-weapons’ currently deployed in the Middle East by unknown perpetrators. Flame can easily be described as one of the most complex threats ever discovered. It’s big and incredibly sophisticated. It pretty much redefines the notion of cyberwar and cyberespionage.

For the full low-down on this advanced threat, read on…

General Questions

What exactly is Flame? A worm? A backdoor? What does it do?

Flame is a sophisticated attack toolkit, which is a lot more complex than Duqu. It is a backdoor, a Trojan, and it has worm-like features, allowing it to replicate in a local network and on removable media if it is commanded so by its master.

The initial point of entry of Flame is unknown - we suspect it is deployed through targeted attacks; however, we haven’t seen the original vector of how it spreads. We have some suspicions about possible use of the MS10-033 vulnerability, but we cannot confirm this now.

Once a system is infected, Flame begins a complex set of operations, including sniffing the network traffic, taking screenshots, recording audio conversations, intercepting the keyboard, and so on. All this data is available to the operators through the link to Flame’s command-and-control servers.

Later, the operators can choose to upload further modules, which expand Flame’s functionality. There are about 20 modules in total and the purpose of most of them is still being investigated.

Research|Big Brother

Dmitry Tarakanov
Kaspersky Lab Expert
Posted May 21, 14:10  GMT
Tags: SpyEye

It seems that development of the main module of SpyEye stopped with last autumn’s version 1.3.48 – and this is now the dominant strain of SpyEye malware.

SpyEye distribution by versions for the period since 1 January 2012*
* Others (7%) includes: 1.2.50, 1.2.58, 1.2.71, 1.2.80, 1.2.82, 1.2.93, 1.3.5, 1.3.9, 1.3.25, 1.3.26, 1.3.30, 1.3.32, 1.3.37, 1.3.41, 1.3.44.

But just because the authors are not developing this platform further, it doesn’t mean that SpyEye is no longer getting new functions. The core code allows anyone to create and attach their own plugins (DLL libraries). I’ve been analyzing SpyEye samples since the start of the year, and I’ve counted 35 different plugins. Below you can see a table with those plugins and the corresponding number of samples in which they were included:


I am now back from the Kaspersky conference: Security For The Next Generation, the International Cup 2012 which took place in the Netherlands, more specifically in Den Haag and Delft. All the guests stayed at an amazingly nice hotel named the Steigenberger Kurhaus Hotel. The hotel was located just by the beach at Scheveningen in The Hague.

Kaspersky had invited the winners from the local student conferences taking place all over the world and had them compete for the final title. Not only students attended the conferences, we also had professors from universities around the globe and also some of the experts from the Kaspersky Global Research and Analysis Team.

More information about the student conference can be found here: http://www.kaspersky.com/about/events/educational-events/it_security_conference_2012_international

DAY #1 - Arrival

This day was probably one of the weirdest days in my entire life. It started out amazingly with a nice breakfast, a sweet espresso and great music flowing out from my speakers. I checked that I had everything fixed: passport was there, all the clothes was there, flight and hotel bookings, everything was there.

Suddenly I heard the taxi coming, so I took my bags, my stuff and I locked the house. The taxi then took me to the train station, where I had to take a bus for half the journey due to some maintenance. I didn't really care about this because I had some bombastic dubstep with me, so I just jumped on the bus en enjoyed the ride.

After about an hour, we stopped at some deserted train station where we all got off, and then took the original train to the airport. Before jumping on the train I just wanted to double check that I had everything with me, but there was something missing... MY WALLET! DAAAANG!


It is quite rare to analyze a malicious file written in the form of a cross-platform browser plugin. It is, however, even rarer to come across plugins created using cross-browser engines. In this post, we will look into a Facebook worm that was written using the Crossrider system – a system still in beta testing.

Image source: http://crossrider.com

Opinions|We Need More Than Jelly Bean

Kaspersky Lab Expert
Posted May 18, 17:03  GMT
Tags: Google

Google is set to launch Android 5.0, aka Jelly Bean, this fall. But do we even need it? While Google has made some steps in securing its Play branded marketplace, and offered a few security updates to the operating system, it is a fact that the most targeted Android platform is still 2.x. Why is that? There are several reasons, not the least of which is a lack of security patches provided to previously deployed operating system versions.


    Carolina Dieckmann, a famous Brazilian actress, recently became the victim of cyber attacks that allowed cybercriminals to steal personal property - nude pictures of her- from her computer. Many pictures or maybe all of them got leaked to the Internet. This incident has served as a good incentive for the Brazilian government to have new cybercrime laws in the country (the current law to fight cybercrime in Brazil was approved back in the 40’s of XX century). As a result of this incident, a new cybercrime law that carries a punishment of up to 2 years in prison for such crimes has finally been proposed for consideration. This is a good and right move! A press article in Portuguese can be

Incidents|Public points of data loss

Dmitry Bestuzhev
Kaspersky Lab Expert
Posted May 14, 11:18  GMT
Tags: Data leaks

    “Forgetting” or “underestimating” are the main reasons for data loss around the world. In an airport lounge during my last trip I came across  some cool tab devices running on Android integrated with an external keyboard available for public use and connected to the Internet.

As in the past I performed a quick check of downloaded files, most visited sites and browser history and found a huge list of sensitive information. Here are some examples:

  • Access via OWA to a corporate email of a Latin American bank.
  • Medical files from Spanish hospitals.
  • Commercial offers with personal banking information of a service provider.
  • Personal traveller information with full names, IDs, frequent flyer number and the destination of the flight.
  • Audit control released by a Latin American government to local companies.
I didn’t check if the browser function “save passwords” was enabled. Just imagine if it was! I also didn’t check the saved cookies. Anyway enough sensitive information was already exposed out there.

Lots of people are not very good at safeguarding their personal information on standard PCs; they are even worse when it comes to tab computers. More often than not, they just don’t know where a file was downloaded on a tab, and they have no idea how to delete it afterwards.

I wonder how much sensitive information is already exposed in this way at airports around the globe! Without any doubt it’s a huge advantage for cybercriminals who know how to use social engineering and a big pain for security officers of the companies who have to train employees. Another important point is when people fly on business – they are usually managers, so any leaked information can compromise not only their personal identity but also a company’s secrets.
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Events|Is ‘SexyDefense’ The Future of Anti-Espionage?

Kaspersky Lab Expert
Posted May 01, 18:39  GMT

At the recent SOURCE Boston conference, one presentation that caught my attention was called SexyDefense - Maximizing the home-field advantage.

This was quite a thought-provoking presentation that was based on the old concept that offense is always the best defense.