Feeds

MPack malware exposes cheapskate web hosts

Apache and the Domino Effect

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Poor configuration of Apache servers allowed multiple websites hosted on the same physical server to become infected in last month's Mpack compromise.

An analysis by security researchers at the SANS Institute's Internet Storm Centre reveals that only one of the websites hosted on a machine needed to contain a vulnerable PHP script to infect all the sites hosted on systems, in cases where Apache permissions were improperly configured. Often the root cause of the problem is when hosting firms skimp on hardware needed to add an extra layer of protective virtualisation.

Thousands of websites (mainly in Italy) were recently compromised using the MPack malware kit. This contained iframe tags that pointed surfers towards hacker-controlled websites.

"The main reason why this attack was possible was the fact that Apache’s process must be able to read all files (in order to serve/process them) and that the file system permissions were not correctly set. It remains questionable how many big hosting sites are affected with this (poor) setup," SANS Institute researchers conclude. "Check if your hosting company uses chroot and/or suExec because that is the only way to make sure that your own web site will not be compromised by other users sharing the same physical server."

MPack is a malware kit, sold online to hackers at prices ranging from $500 to $1,000. The application is offered with modular extras, maintenance updates and what amounts to support contracts that in many ways rival or surpass those offered by legitimate software suppliers. ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
BMW's ConnectedDrive falls over, bosses blame upgrade snafu
Traffic flows up 20% as motorway middle lanes miraculously unclog
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.