Colin Mc Hugo

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Colin Mc Hugo
Security Engineer Manager & CEO at Quantum Infinite Solutions Group Ltd.
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A Stealthy Linux Malware Targeting Latin American Financial Sector

June 9, 2022
Stealthy Linux Malware

Cybersecurity scientists have actually taken the covers off what they call a “nearly-impossible-to-detect” Linux malware that can be weaponized to backdoor contaminated systems.

Referred To As Symbiote by risk knowledge companies BlackBerry and also Intezer, the sneaky malware is so called for its capacity to hide itself within running procedures and also network web traffic and also drain pipes a sufferer’s sources like a parasite.

The drivers behind Symbiote are thought to have actually started advancement on the malware in November 2021, with the risk star mainly utilizing it to target the economic market in Latin America, consisting of financial institutions like Banco do Brasil and also Caixa.

” Symbiote’s primary goal is to catch qualifications and also to assist in backdoor accessibility to a sufferer’s equipment,” scientists Joakim Kennedy and also Ismael Valenzuela claimed in a report shown to The Cyberpunk Information. “What makes Symbiote various from various other Linux malware is that it contaminates running procedures as opposed to making use of a standalone executable documents to cause damages.”


It accomplishes this by leveraging an indigenous Linux attribute called LD_PRELOAD— a technique formerly used by malware such as Pro-Ocean and also Facefish– so regarding be filled by the dynamic linker right into all running procedures and also contaminate the host.

Besides concealing its visibility on the documents system, Symbiote is likewise efficient in masking its network web traffic by using the prolonged Berkeley Package Filter (eBPF) attribute. This is executed by infusing itself right into an examination software application’s procedure and also making use of BPF to strain outcomes that would certainly reveal its task.

Upon pirating all running procedures, Symbiote makes it possible for rootkit capability to additional conceal proof of its visibility and also offers a backdoor for the risk star to visit to the equipment and also perform fortunate commands. It has actually likewise been observed keeping recorded qualifications secured in data impersonating as C header data.


This is not the very first time a malware with comparable capacities has actually been identified in the wild. In February 2014, ESET exposed a Linux backdoor called Ebury that’s constructed to swipe OpenSSH qualifications and also keep accessibility to a jeopardized web server.

” Because the malware runs as a user-land degree rootkit, discovering an infection might be tough,” the scientists wrapped up. “Network telemetry can be utilized to find strange DNS demands and also protection devices such as AVs and also EDRs must be statically connected to guarantee they are not ‘contaminated’ by userland rootkits.”

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