Security Experts:

"KimcilWare" Ransomware Targets Magento Websites

A new piece of ransomware apparently designed to encrypt files on websites running the popular Magento ecommerce solution has been spotted in the wild.

The threat, dubbed “KimcilWare,” has been analyzed by researchers of the Malware Hunter Team and Lawrence Abrams of Bleeping Computer.

Once it infects a web server, one version of the ransomware encrypts files and appends the .kimcilware extension to them. In this case, victims are instructed via an “index.html” file added to the infected website to pay $140 to recover their data.

Another variant, which appends the .locked extension to encrypted files, demands the payment of 1 Bitcoin (roughly $415) in return for a “decryption package.”

According to Abrams, the malware uses a Rijndael block cipher to encrypt files and, for the time being, there is no way to recover the data without paying the ransom.

VirusTotal shows that currently only Bkav and Trend Micro products detect the threat based on its signature. Malware Hunter Team pointed out that it’s not clear if KimcilWare is designed to target only Magento websites, but there are no reports of infections on other platforms. Experts have pointed out that the threat can likely target any PHP website.

Victims of KimcilWare have been instructed to contact tuyuljahat(at)hotmail.com, an email address also used by a buggy Windows ransomware called MireWare that is based on Hidden Tear, an “educational” ransomware whose author included intentional encryption flaws to prevent abuse.

It’s unclear at this point what method has been used to get KimcilWare on Magento websites, but it’s worth noting that Magento has patched many serious vulnerabilities over the past period. The last security update was released on Wednesday to patch cross-site scripting (XSS), code execution, brute force, information disclosure, and insufficient data protection issues.

Magento has issued several security alerts over the past weeks to warn users about new malware attacks designed to harvest sensitive information. The developer of the popular ecommerce platform has also warned about a campaign in which attackers brute-force passwords in an effort to gain access to administration panels.

Third party components could also be responsible for the infections. One Magento store owner reported that his files were encrypted after installing the Helios Vimeo Video Gallery extension.

Magento has provided SecurityWeek the following statement:

“While there are reports circulating about ransomware focused on Magento shops, we do not believe that there is a new attack vector, nor do we believe that this issue is specific to Magento, as this may turn out to be a more general web server vulnerability. At this time, this does not appear to be a widespread issue, as only 4 sites that we know of have been impacted and there has been no increase in that number since its initial discovery. There were also reports that the source of the attack could be a Magento extension. We removed that extension as a precaution and scanned for malware, but have found no evidence of malware.


As always, we remain committed to the security of our merchants and recommend that they ensure that they are following Magento Security Best Practices and have applied all available patches for the version of Magento that they are running. We post regular updates about potential security issues at our Security Center and encourage merchants to check there for news about any issues."

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Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a contributing editor at SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.