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Hackers Eschew Malware to Keep Attacks Hidden

8/09/2015 by Sharon Shahzad


Over half of the targeted threats investigated by Dell SecureWorks over the past year have been carried out not with backdoor malware but compromised credentials and the victim company’s own remote access tools, according to the security vendor.

The firm’s Counter Threat Unit (CTU) claimed that this “living off the land” approach to targeted attacks makes them especially difficult for IT teams to spot, perhaps delaying their discovery for weeks, months or even years.

One such threat group was TG-1314, which the researchers found had used compromised credentials from the employee of a manufacturing company to access an internet-facing Citrix server and infiltrate the target network.

“CTU researchers discovered evidence that the threat actors were not only leveraging the company’s remote access infrastructure but were also using the company’s endpoint management platform, Altiris, to move laterally through the network,” it explained in a blog post.

Another company had hundreds of credit and debit card numbers lifted from its PoS terminals after an employee’s credentials for its Citrix Centralized Security Management Server were stolen.

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