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Candid Wueest | 07 Feb 2007 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

If you live in a German-speaking region, then you might have received one or two strange emails last month, which were unlike the huge amount of regular spam often seen. The first type of odd email was multiple instances of alleged invoices that were sent as email attachments by local ISPs or other service providers. The disguised attachment had a .pdf.exe double extension, which was not an invoice document at all, but a Downloader. Some people thought it was a scam asking for payment for a service that was never received (which was not true in this case), but even so the decision to immediately delete the email was the right choice.

At the end of January, another strange email made its rounds. This one claimed to come from the Bundeskriminalamt (BKA), the federal police in Germany. The email text mentioned charges against the user for downloading illegal movies and software and referred to the attachment as a fax form for statements that had to be completed as soon as...

Dave Cole | 25 Jan 2007 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

We’re happy to report that so far today, Peacomm and Mixor.Q activity is lighter than the maelstrom of activity we’ve seen in previous days. We’ve noted no new spam runs today, with the malware submissions and activity levels tapering off a bit as well. Phew! Our Security Response team in Pune, India, has pulled together a slick Flash-based run through of the attack, which can be viewed using the following URL:
http://www.symantec.com/content/en/us/home_homeoffice/media/flash/peacomm.html

Just a little more info on this threat you may have not heard before—it is communicating over peer-to-peer using the Overnet protocol and network (of eDonkey fame). After connecting to the network, the threat then searches for some particular hashes (searches are done by hash, not by specific filename) and eventually it receives a reply that includes some 'meta tag' information...

Eric Chien | 25 Jan 2007 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

While Trojan.Peacomm (aka Storm Worm) received its alias because of unprecedented storms that battered Europe, the threat deserves the name more because Peacomm itself is the perfect storm. Peacomm is a combination of an open source email worm, a file infecting virus, a polymorphic packer, a spam relay, a rootkit, and a botnet that operates over a peer-to-peer network. In the history of malicious code, we have never seen a malicious threat that contains a handful of these characteristics let alone all of them. Thus, the perfect storm.

We've been tracking Peacomm over the week and wanted to provide a high level summary of how Peacomm spreads and some of the unique and interesting aspects of Peacomm, including how it uses peer-to-peer communication with the ultimate goal of sending out spam.

In late December and early January, the authors of Peacomm...

Symantec Security Response | 23 Jan 2007 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

While we often report on the number of infections we’re seeing for a threat and what our honeynets are catching, we haven’t often shared the numbers on the amount of malicious code we’re seeing via Symantec’s antispam solutions. With Trojan.Peacomm still very much on the prowl and repeatedly blasting spam in short bursts of five to ten minutes, we thought we’d share some of our statistics on the malware we see being spammed around the globe. All of the numbers below are from December 22, 2006 to January 22, 2007.

...

Amado Hidalgo | 22 Jan 2007 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

Since I posted my blog last Friday, the Trojan.Peacomm threat has (not surprisingly) evolved. The attachments have new filenames, some dropped files have changed, and the subject lines of the spam email are also changing. Please have a look at the full details in our updated write-up here.

The bot machines are now communicating over UDP port 7871, instead of port 4000. Symantec’s Threat Management System confirms this change:

peacomm_port7871-SRC_IPs.jpeg
Figure 1. IPs originating activity - UDP port 7871

More interestingly, the new version of the threat has...

Amado Hidalgo | 19 Jan 2007 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

Symantec Security Response has seen some moderate spamming of a new Trojan horse. The threat arrived in an email with an empty body and a variety of subjects such as:

A killer at 11, he's free at 21 and kill again!
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has kicked German Chancellor Angela Merkel
British Muslims Genocide
Naked teens attack home director.
230 dead as storm batters Europe.
Re: Your text

The attachments may have any of the following filenames:
FullVideo.exe
Full Story.exe
Video.exe
Read More.exe
FullClip.exe

The attachment is not a video clip, but a Trojan horse program, which Symantec heuristic technology already detected as...

Candid Wueest | 02 Jan 2007 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

If I remember my math teacher correctly, then 1 + 1 = 2. Or, 2.0, to be trendy. In terms of the Internet today this could mean: Take one interactive Web solution plus one large user community and that will equal the next generation Web application. In 2006, we have seen many companies employing exactly this formula to create new Web services (some of which are very useful, while others are more for entertainment).

But in arithmetic you have to be sure to understand the variables you calculate with. If, like in this case, you deal with a very large active user group, then the chances of encountering people who don’t play by the rules are high. Therefore, it should be of no surprise that we have seen a rise in Web attacks toward the end of this year, especially considering the number of browser vulnerabilities that were discovered.

Jeremiah Grossman and others compiled a list of the...

Shunichi Imano | 30 Dec 2006 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

Recently, we have seen many files that undermine the spirit of the holiday season. These files are typically named postcard.exe, greeting postcard.exe, or greeting card.exe. The files usually arrive as email attachments, which we have detected as W32.Mixor.Q@mm. Once infected, the worm attempts to gather email addresses from the compromised computer. It then sends a mass email with a copy of itself to those addresses.

If sending the worm is not rude enough, it also drops a Trojan horse named Trojan.Galapoper.A. The Trojan attempts to download these unwanted Christmas presents onto the infected computer from the Internet.

To mitigate the attack, customers are advised to update their products to the latest...

Ollie Whitehouse | 29 Dec 2006 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

While speaking with an industry friend recently, he mentioned that he had received some spam. When viewed in plain text, the spam looked like this (the filename has been changed to save the compromised):

Subject: You have received a greeting from a family member! You can pick up your postcard at the following web address http://62.75.XXX.XXX/~XXXXXXXX/XXXXXXXXXX.exe

However, if you remove the executable from the URL, you get a directory listing:

OW_dcrim_index.jpeg

So, from this we can see the machine had been compromised for two months prior to the malicious code being placed upon the site (one day before my friend received the message). However, the individual in this...

Vincent Weafer | 27 Dec 2006 08:00:00 GMT | 0 comments

The countdown to December 31 has begun. As 2006 comes to a close, it’s important to review the significant trends and issues observed by Symantec Security Response over the past year. Some of these may relate to what we can expect to see in the New Year.

First and foremost, throughout 2006 we identified that online fraud has steadily increased and become even more sophisticated. Much of the online fraud activity we’ve seen has been in the form of phishing – approximately seven million total phishing attempts each day. That’s a lot of cybercriminals on the hunt for your personal information! We have also witnessed phishers innovating beyond the traditional online scam where they may distribute tens of thousands of emails hoping to trick one of you lucky individuals. Today, we are seeing fraudsters embrace new techniques such as vishing and SMishing to solicit and obtain your confidential information. See Zulfikar Ramzan’s blog...