Feeds

Flash cache exploit debuts in Amnesty attack

Cash from chaos

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Miscreants have deployed a subtle variant of the well established drive-by-download attack tactics against the website of human rights organisation Amnesty International.

In traditional drive-by-download attacks malicious code is planted on websites. This code redirects surfers to an exploit site, which relies on browser vulnerabilities or other exploits to download and execute malware onto visiting PCs.

The attack on the Amnesty website, detected by security firm Armorize, relied on a different sequence of events. In this case, malicious scripts are used to locate the malware which is already sitting in the browser's cache directory, before executing it.

This so-called drive-by cache approach make attacks harder to detect because no attempt is made to download a file and write it to disk, a suspicion manoeuvre many security software packages are liable to detect. By bypassing this step dodgy sorts are more likely to slip their wares past security software undetected.

The Amnesty International attack ultimately relied on an Adobe Flash zero-day exploit, patched by Adobe late last week, with the ultimate aim of dropping a backdoor on compromised machines.

A full write-up of the attack, analysing the code involved and explaining the concept of drive-by cache attacks in greater depth, can be found on the Armorize blog here.

It's at least the second time in six months Amnesty International's website has attacked its visitors. In November, visitors to the group's Hong Kong website were bombarded with a host of potent exploits, including one that targeted what was then a critical zero-day vulnerability in Internet Explorer. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
Heartbleed exploit, inoculation, both released
File under 'this is going to hurt you more than it hurts me'
Arts and crafts store Michaels says 3 million credit cards exposed in breach
Meanwhile, Target investigators prepare for long process in nabbing hackers
Canadian taxman says hundreds pierced by Heartbleed SSL skewer
900 social insurance numbers nicked, says revenue watchman
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.