StoneDrill Disk Wiping Malware Found Targeting European Industries

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A brand new disk wiping malware has been uncovered concentrating on a petroleum firm in Europe, which is sort of just like the mysterious disk wiper malware Shamoon that wiped knowledge from 35,000 computer systems at Saudi Arabia's nationwide oil firm in 2012.

Disk wiping malware has the power to cripple any group by completely wiping out knowledge from all onerous drive and exterior storage on a focused machine, inflicting nice monetary and reputational injury.

Safety researchers from Moscow-based antivirus supplier Kaspersky Lab found the brand new wiper StoneDrill whereas researching final November's re-emergence of Shamoon malware (Shamoon assaults – two assaults occurred in November and one in late January.

Shamoon is the extra superior model of Shamoon malware that reportedly hit 15 authorities businesses and organizations the world over, wipes knowledge and takes management of the pc’s boot document, stopping the computer systems from being turned again on.

In the meantime, Kaspersky researchers discovered that the newly found StoneDrill wiper malware was inbuilt an analogous "fashion" to Shamoon, however didn't share the very same code base.

"The invention of the StoneDrill wiper in Europe is a big signal that the group is increasing its damaging assaults outdoors the Center East," Kaspersky researchers say in a blog post. "The goal for the assault seems to be a big company with a large space of exercise within the petrochemical sector, with no obvious connection or curiosity in Saudi Arabia."

Researchers additionally observed that the samples of Shamoon and StoneDrill have been additionally uploaded a number of occasions to on-line multi-scanner antivirus engines from Saudi Arabia final November.

This is How StoneDrill Malware Works:

StoneDrill has been designed to as a service and goal all methods related inside a corporation to a Home windows area. So as to unfold itself, the malware depends on an inventory of arduous coded, beforehand stolen usernames and passwords belonging to directors of the focused area.

As soon as contaminated, StoneDrill mechanically generates a customized wiper malware module with out connecting to any command-and-control server, rendering the contaminated machines utterly inoperable.

StoneDrill wiper malware additionally consists of the next traits:

New Evasion Methods

StoneDrill options a powerful means to evade detection and keep away from sandbox execution. In contrast to Shamoon, StoneDrill does not make use of disk drivers throughout set up.

As an alternative, StoneDrill depends on reminiscence injection of the info wiping module into the sufferer's most popular browser.

StoneDrill additionally makes use of Visible Primary Scripts to run self-delete scripts, whereas Shamoon didn't use any exterior scripts.

Backdoor Potential

Like Shamoon, StoneDrill additionally consists of backdoor features which are used for espionage operations, with screenshot and add capabilities.

Kaspersky researchers recognized a minimum of 4 command-and-control (C&C) servers that the attackers used to spy on and steal knowledge from an unknown variety of targets.

Moreover, StoneDrill makes use of command and management communications to work together with the malware as an alternative of utilizing a "kill time" as within the Shamoon assaults analyzed in January 2017 that don't implement any C&C communication.

Ransomware Element

In addition to wiping performance, the brand new malware additionally features a ransomware element.

Nevertheless, this function is at present inactive however attackers can use leverage this a part of the platform in future assaults to carry victims hostage for monetary or idealistic achieve.

Like Shamoon, StoneDrill was reportedly compiled in October and November 2016.

Though StoneDrill principally targets organizations in Saudi Arabia, Kaspersky researchers found the malware victims in Europe as nicely, which means that the attackers is perhaps widening their marketing campaign.

For extra technical particulars concerning the StoneDrill and Shamoon assaults, you possibly can head on to Kaspersky's official blog.