Colin Mc Hugo

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Colin Mc Hugo
Security Engineer Manager & CEO at Quantum Infinite Solutions Group Ltd.
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New APT Hacking Group Targets Microsoft IIS Servers with ASP.NET Exploits

August 2, 2021
APT Hacking Group

A brand new extremely succesful and chronic menace actor has been focusing on main high-profile private and non-private entities within the U.S. as a part of a collection of focused cyber intrusion assaults by exploiting internet-facing Microsoft Web Data Companies (IIS) servers to infiltrate their networks.

Israeli cybersecurity agency Sygnia, which recognized the marketing campaign, is monitoring the superior, stealthy adversary beneath the moniker “Praying Mantis” or “TG2021.”

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“TG1021 makes use of a custom-made malware framework, constructed round a typical core, tailored for IIS servers. The toolset is totally unstable, reflectively loaded into an affected machine’s reminiscence and leaves little-to-no hint on contaminated targets,” the researchers said. “The menace actor additionally makes use of a further stealthy backdoor and a number of other post-exploitations modules to carry out community reconnaissance, elevate privileges, and transfer laterally inside networks.”

APT Hacking Group

Moreover exhibiting capabilities that present a major effort to keep away from detection by actively interfering with logging mechanisms and efficiently evading industrial endpoint detection and response (EDR) methods, the menace actor has been identified to leverage an arsenal of ASP.NET net software exploits to achieve an preliminary foothold and backdoor the servers by executing a complicated implant named “NodeIISWeb” that is designed to load {custom} DLLs in addition to intercept and deal with HTTP requests acquired by the server.

APT Hacking Group

The vulnerabilities are taken benefit of by the actor embrace:

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Curiously, Sygnia’s investigation into TG1021’s techniques, strategies, and procedures (TTPs) have unearthed “main overlaps” to these of a nation-sponsored actor named “Copy-Paste Compromises,” as detailed in an advisory launched by the Australian Cyber Safety Centre (ACSC) in June 2020, which described a cyber marketing campaign focusing on public-facing infrastructure primarily by means of using unpatched flaws in Telerik UI and IIS servers. Nevertheless, a proper attribution is but to be made.

“Praying Mantis, which has been noticed focusing on high-profile private and non-private entities in two main Western markets, exemplifies a rising development of cyber criminals utilizing subtle, nation-state assault strategies to focus on industrial organizations,” the researchers mentioned. “Steady forensics actions and well timed incident response are important to figuring out and successfully defending networks from assaults by comparable menace actors.”

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