Ransomware is quickly becoming the scourge of the Internet and Cisco Systems is reporting that several very popular web sites have recently been distribution points via malvertising. According to an investigation detailed on the Cisco Systems blog site, popular web sites including Disney and Facebook have been compromised to display infected advertisements that download a ransomware program similar to the notorious CryptLocker.
CISCO analyzed data accumulated by its Cloud Web Security (CWS) that monitors its customer’s web use and warns them if they have been visiting domains that could be malicious. Cisco’s analysis determined that in the last month there has been a dramatic increase in sites compromised by cyber criminals who use the RIG exploit kit (ET). According to Cisco, “ we have so far blocked requests to over 90 domains for more than 17% of our Cloud Web Security (CWS) customers” because of the RIG ET.
Cisco has determined that many of the sites compromised by the use of RIG have been spreading the Cryptowall ransomware via compromised advertisements, malvertising. These appear to be exploiting the following vulnerabilities:
Java: cve-2013-2465 and cve-2012-0507
Cryptowall, like Cryptolocker and its variants, encrypt a victim’s data files so they cannot be used. The user can only obtain the encryption key needed to access their files if they pay a ransom, which increases the longer you wait to pay. Cisco’s blog reported that an infected test server had its ransom increase 3 times and was at $600 as of publication.
Earlier in the week, the US Justice Department reported that an international effort had disrupted a botnet that was distributing Cryptolocker. Cisco’s report is a reminder that Cryptolocker is not the only ransomware threat. Cyrptolocker’s success has spawned numerous variants and imitators.
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