Feeds

iPhone worm hjacks ING customers

No messing this time

Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet

Updated The second worm to infect jailbroken iPhone users reportedly targets customers of Dutch online bank ING Direct.

Surfers visiting the site with infected devices are redirected to a phishing site designed to harvest online banking login details, the BBC reports. ING Direct told the BBC it planned to warn users' of the attack via its website, as well as briefing front line call centre staff on the threat.

Mikko Hypponen, chief research officer at F-Secure, said the threat had in any case been neutralised. "It [the worm] was targeting ING. The websites it needed for this to work have now been taken down."

Anti-virus analysts, still in the process of analysing the malware, caution that the attack is a bit more complex than simple phishing and seems to involve an attempt to snatch SMS messages associated with online banking transactions. We're yet to hear back from ING Direct on this point but we'll update this story as and when we hear more.

What is clear is that the "Duh" or Ikee-B worm, like the earlier Rickrolling worm, exploits an SSH backdoor on jailbroken handsets in order to spread.

Part of the process of jailbreaking iPhones to allow unofficial software to be installed can involve installing SSH (secure shell) remote access. Users who go through this step but fail to change the default root password of iPhones from alpine leave a backdoor that wide open to attack.

Although Duh exploits the same SSH backdoor as the original Ikee worm, the latest malware is far more dangerous than its predecessor. Doh turns compromised devices into a botnet under the control of unidentified hackers. The Rickrolling ikee worm, by contrast, only changes users' wallpaper to an image of cheesy pop warbler Rick Astley.

Duh also searches across a wider range of IP ranges than Ikee, which only ever affected Optus users in Australia. It includes IP ranges allocated to carriers in several countries, including The Netherlands, Portugal, Australia, Austria, and Hungary. All the infections reported thus far have happened in The Netherlands. The attack only came to light after a Dutch ISP noticed unusual traffic and began to investigate.

As previously reported, compromised phones are left under the control of a botnet server in Lithuania. Duh changes the root password of compromised iPhones, allowing crooks to log into compromised units and carry out malicious further actions.

SophosLabs researcher Paul Ducklin used a password cracking tool to discover the malware changes iPhone root passwords from 'alpine to 'ohshit'.

In addition to the two iPhone worms, an earlier hacking/extortion attack (targeting iPhone users in the Netherlands) also exploited the default password SSH backdoor on jailbroken iPhones.

Security experts strongly advise users of jailbroken phones to change their passwords from 'alpine' immediately to avoid further attacks along the same lines. ®

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Turnbull: NBN won't turn your town into Silicon Valley
'People have been brainwashed to believe that their world will be changed forever if they get FTTP'
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
ISPs' post-net-neutrality world is built on 'bribes' says Tim Berners-Lee
Father of the worldwide web is extremely peeved over pay-per-packet-type plans
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.