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New Campaign Targets Drupalgeddon2 Flaw to Install Malware

Hackers continue to target the Drupal vulnerability named Drupalgeddon2 to install malware onto unpatched systems, Akamai’s security researchers have discovered.

Hackers continue to target the Drupal vulnerability named Drupalgeddon2 to install malware onto unpatched systems, Akamai’s security researchers have discovered.

Tracked as CVE-2018-7600, the security flaw impacts Drupal versions 6, 7 and 8. The bug was addressed in March 2018, with the first attacks targeting it spotted only several weeks later, attempting to deploy malicious programs such as crypto-miners and backdoors.

Now, Akamai security researcher Larry W. Cashdollar reveals that the vulnerability continues to be targeted in a recently observed malicious campaign where attackers attempt to run code embedded in a .gif file.

Although not widespread, the campaign appears to be targeting a broad range of high profile websites, without a focus on a specific industry.

One of the analyzed .gif files was hosted on a compromised bodysurfing website located in Brazil. The file contains obfuscated PHP code designed to decode base64-encoded malware stored in a variable.

The researcher discovered that the malware could scan for credentials stored in local files, send email with the discovered credentials, replace the local .htaccess file, display MySQL my.cnf configuration files, execute a remote file, show system information, rename files, upload files, and launch a web shell.

In addition to the .gif, the attack drops a piece of malware stored in a .txt in the form of a Perl script. This malicious program uses Internet Relay Chat (IRC) for command and control (C&C) communication.

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The threat can launch distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, but also functions as a remote access Trojan (RAT). It can connect to a now defunct IRC server and join a specific channel to receive commands.

Functionality included in the malware allows it to gather information from the local system and provide attackers with control over it.

It also supports a SQL flood command, which allows the malware operators to send generic HTTP GET requests to MySQL’s default port, 3306, on the specified target.

“This piece of code has been widely shared and modified by the criminal Internet underground,” Cashdollar says.

The new campaign underlines once again the importance of maintaining a good security hygiene, which also involves patching in a timely manner.

The targeted Drupalgeddon2 vulnerability is a year and a half old and can be easily exploited, which creates great risks for enterprise environments with unpatched systems, as scanning and infection attacks can be automated.

“Maintaining patches in a timely fashion, as well as properly decommissioning servers if they’re no longer being used is the best preventative measure that administrators and security teams can take,” the researcher concludes.

Related: Hackers Exploit Drupalgeddon2 to Install Backdoor

Related: Hackers Start Exploiting Drupalgeddon2 Vulnerability

Written By

Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

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