Feeds

Energizer battery rechargers still haunted by trojan backdoor

Really does keep going and going

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

"It keeps going and going and going" may be the slogan coined for Energizer batteries, but the same holds true for a nasty trojan backdoor that mysteriously slipped into software used to monitor rechargeable versions of the product.

Almost two weeks after a red-faced Energizer admitted its Duo USB battery charger installed a data-stealing backdoor on users' PCs, the file that spreads the infection was still being distributed Wednesday evening on a European site operated by the consumer-products company.

According to this VirusTotal analysis, UsbCharger_setup_V1_1_1.exe is flagged as malicious by 24 of the 42 leading anti-virus firms. To make sure it wasn't a false positive, The Register checked with anti-virus firms Immunet and Trend Micro, both of which said the infection is real.

Contrary to the VirusTotal results, the threat is also flagged by Symantec's Norton AV app, Immunet added. Trend Micro Senior Threat Researcher Paul Ferguson said his company's AV product also protects against it by flagging a key dll file, rather than the executable file.

Microsoft labels the trojan as Arurizer.A and warns that it installs a backdoor on user machines that allows attackers to upload, download, and delete files at will, install additional malware and carry out other nefarious deeds.

Twelve days ago, Energizer pledged to mount an investigation into how such a gaffe could have happened. The company has yet to release the results of that probe. Details that would be particularly useful include how long the malicious file has been available, how many of its customers may have been infected, and whether the company has hired an outside security firm to scan for such threats.

The public should hold Energizer accountable for that information. But first it ought to demand that the company conduct a top-to-bottom scan of every web property it owns for any signs of additional malware. And while customers are at it, they may want to ask themselves: Do you really want to trust the security of your PC to a battery maker?

Sometimes, the low-tech - or no-tech - solution is the way to go. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
FYI: OS X Yosemite's Spotlight tells Apple EVERYTHING you're looking for
It's on by default – didn't you read the small print?
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch
Redmond makes a hash of hashing add-on
'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail
15 months home detention leaves egg on feds' faces as they grab for more power
China is ALREADY spying on Apple iCloud users, claims watchdog
Attack harvests users' info at iPhone 6 launch
Carders punch holes through Staples
Investigation launched into East Coast stores
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.