Feeds

Amnesty International UK site flung Gh0st RAT at surfers after hack

Do-gooders done for

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Amnesty International UK's website was hacked early this week in an assault ultimately geared towards planting malware onto the PCs of visiting surfers.

Malicious Java code was planted on the site in a bid to push the Gh0st RAT Trojan onto vulnerable Windows machines. If successful, the attack plants malware onto machines that is capable of extracting the user's files, email, passwords and other sensitive personal information.

The attack, which ran between 7 and 9 May, was detected by web security firm Websense, which informed Amnesty about the threat. The human rights organisation has since cleaned up its site.

Amnesty International is no stranger to this type of attack. Its UK site was hit by a similar drive-by-download-style attack back in 2009, and a similar assault was launched against its Hong Kong site a year later.

Websense has a write-up of the latest assault in a blog post here.

The Gh0st Trojan has been used by suspected Chinese hackers in several advanced persistent threat (APT) style attacks, most notably the ‘Nitro’ attacks against energy firms in 2011. Chinese involvement in the Amnesty International attack is suspected but unproven.

"Yesterday [Wednesday] Amnesty.org.uk was infected with a piece of malicious code. As soon as we became aware of the infection we worked with our hosting company to isolate it and remove it as a matter of urgency. The problem was resolved by yesterday lunchtime," the organization told El Reg in a statement.

"Security is very important to us and as well as extensive security measure in place to prevent exploits such as this, we also have constant monitoring in place to alert us immediately when incidents like this occur. 'All our users profiles are held on a completely separate website and server and were in no way compromised by this incident." ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
'Kim Kardashian snaps naked selfies with a BLACKBERRY'. *Twitterati gasps*
More alleged private, nude celeb pics appear online
Home Depot ignored staff warnings of security fail laundry list
'Just use cash', former security staffer warns friends
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign
Claim of tapped undersea cable refuted by Kiwi PM as Kim claims extradition plot
Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach
Miscreants probably got in, you guys know the drill by now
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
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.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
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.