Cyber Security Today, July 3, 2024 – Beware of advanced attack tactics

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Beware of advanced attack tactics.

Welcome to Cyber Security Today. It’s Wedneday July 3rd, 2024. I’m Howard Solomon, contributing reporter on cybersecurity for TechNewsday.com.

Threat actors are getting craftier. That’s no surprise. But a recent report from Menlo Security highlighted the tactics of three sophisticated attack groups as examples of what defenders have to prepare for.

“The complexity and stealth of these new tactics represents the investment of considerable resources in advancing phishing and malware delivery,” the report says. Combined, these three campaigns went after approximately 40,000 high-impact users, including C-suite executives.

One attack group, nicknamed LegalQloud, targets governments and investment banks in North America, sending emails impersonating the names of some 500 law firms. The goal is to steal Microsoft application login credentials. It gets away with the strategy by hosting its infrastructure on the cloud servers of China-based internet provider Tencent, so the URLs in malicous phishing links bypass traditional defence scanners and allow-list controls.

Another group, nicknamed Eqooqp has been targeting government and private sector organizations by putting a proxy server in between the target user and a legitimate website. That allows the attacker to intercept login credentials. Another way of describing this is a man-in-the-middle attack that can bypass non-phishing-resistant multifactor authentication. It starts with a victim clicking on a link in a phishing email that looks like it came from a legitimate source, like the HR department. The malicious web page they go to relays the victim’s login credentials to a legitimate-looking Microsoft login page.

The third phishing campaign is nicknamed Boomer and has been targeting government and healthcare organizations among others. It uses advanced evasive techniques including custom HTTP headers, tracking cookies and server-side generated phishing pages. Some of the phony web sites it creates have short lives, making it hard for defenders to create URL block lists.

It’s not like these and other evasive tactics can’t be spotted. But defenders have to be aware and watch for them. One thing these groups have in common is the use of phishing attacks, so regularly reminding employees not to enter login credentials after clicking on a link is vital.

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Howard Solomon
Howard Solomonhttps://www.itworldcanada.com
Currently a freelance writer, I'm the former editor of ITWorldCanada.com and Computing Canada. An IT journalist since 1997, I've written for ITBusiness.ca and Computer Dealer News. Before that I was a staff reporter at the Calgary Herald and the Brampton (Ont.) Daily Times.

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