Feeds

New ZeuS-based Trojan leeches cash from cloud-based payrolls

Adds phishing mules to employee roster

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

Cybercrooks have forged a ZeuS-based Trojan that targets cloud-based payroll service providers.

ZeuS, a favourite tool for financially motivated cybercrooks, has provided a straightforward way to harvest online banking credentials for years. A new attack, detected by transaction security firm Trusteer, shows that crooks are going up the food chain.

Trusteer researchers have captured a ZeuS configuration that targets Ceridian, a Canadian human resources and payroll services provider. The ZeuS-based Trojan works by capturing a screenshot of the payroll services web page when a malware-infected PC is used to visit the site. This information is uploaded, allowing crooks to obtain the user ID, password, company number and the icon selected by the user for the image-based authentication system – enough information to siphon funds from compromised accounts into those controlled by money mules, as explained in a blog post here.

Trusteer reckons crooks are targeting the small cloud service provider in order to get around the tougher problem of how to bypass industrial strength security controls that are typically maintained by larger businesses. Cloud services can be accessed using unmanaged devices that are typically less secure and more vulnerable to infection by ZeuS-style financial malware.

The financial losses associated with this type of attack are potentially huge. For example, last August cyberthieves reportedly stole $217,000 from the Metropolitan Entertainment & Convention Authority (MECA) after compromising its payroll system and adding money mules as employees. A MECA worker reportedly fell for a phishing email that allowed crooks to steal access credentials to the organisation's payroll system.

Hitting payroll providers is certainly far more lucrative than targeting individual consumers, according to Trusteer, which predicts a growth in this type of attack as a result. ®

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

More from The Register

next story
Sysadmin Day 2014: Quick, there's still time to get the beers in
He walked over the broken glass, killed the thugs... and er... reconnected the cables*
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
SHOCK and AWS: The fall of Amazon's deflationary cloud
Just as Jeff Bezos did to books and CDs, Amazon's rivals are now doing to it
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
The triumph of VVOL: Everyone's jumping into bed with VMware
'Bandwagon'? Yes, we're on it and so what, say big dogs
Carbon tax repeal won't see data centre operators cut prices
Rackspace says electricity isn't a major cost, Equinix promises 'no levy'
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
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.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.