Kimsuki hackers use commodity RATs with custom Gold Dragon malware

Commodity RAT
xRAT is an open-source remote access and administration tool available for free on GitHub.
The malware provides a range of features such as keylogging, remote shell, file manager actions, reverse HTTPS proxy, AES-128 communication, and automated social engineering.

A sophisticated threat actor may choose to use commodity RATs because, for basic reconnaissance operations, these tools are perfectly adequate and don’t require much configuration.

This allows threat actors to focus their resources on developing later-stage malware that requires more specialized functionality depending on the defense tools/practices present on the target.

Also, commodity RATs blend in with activity from a broad spectrum of threat actors, making it harder for analysts to attribute malicious activity to a particular group.

Gold Dragon backdoor
Gold Dragon is a second-stage backdoor that Kimsuky typically deploys after a file-less PowerShell-based first-stage attack that leverages steganography.

It has been documented in a 2020 report by Cybereason and a 2021 analysis by researchers at Cisco Talos, so this is not a novel malware.

However, as ASEC explains in its report, the variant they spotted in this latest campaign features additional functions such as the exfiltration of basic system information.

Sign Up For Threat Alerts

Loading...
Threats Icon

Jan 29, 2023

APT15 Targets Multiple Sectors With Turian Backdoor

APT15, also known as Playful Taurus, is an advanced persistent threat (APT) that conducts a...

Threats Icon

Jan 26, 2023

Vice Society Ransomware Group Targets Manufacturing Companies

The Vice Society threat group was discovered targeting multiple sectors including manufacturing companies in Brazil....

Threats Icon

Jan 26, 2023

US Cert Alert – Alert (AA23-025A) Protecting...

Although this campaign appears financially motivated, the authoring organizations assess it could lead to additional...

Threats Icon

Jan 25, 2023

Emotet Malware Makes a Comeback with New...

The Emotet malware operation has continued to refine its tactics in an effort to fly...

Threats Icon

Jan 25, 2023

DragonSpark

The DragonSpark attacks represent the first concrete malicious activity where Analysts observe the consistent use...

Threats Icon

Jan 25, 2023

PLAY Ransomware

PLAY is simple but heavily obfuscated with a lot of unique tricks that have not...

Threats Icon

Jan 24, 2023

Gamaredon Abuses Telegram To Target Ukrainian Government...

The Gamaredon APT group was discovered targeting Ukrainian government entities using the Telegram messaging service...

Threats Icon

Jan 23, 2023

NeedleDropper: A New Dropper-as-a-Service Uncovered

Avast's Threat Research Team has since October 2022 been observing a new strain of dropper...

Threats Icon

Jan 22, 2023

Aurora Stealer Leverages Shapeshifting Tactics And Popular...

A threat actor was discovered mimicking legitimate websites to host and deliver the 9002 RAT,...

Threats Icon

Jan 19, 2023

Earth Bogle Campaign Targets Entities With Geopolitical...

Middle Eastern geopolitical themed lures were used to distribute njRAT across the Middle East and...

Threats Icon

Jan 18, 2023

The NoName057(16) Hacktivist Group Targets Ukraine Supporters...

The NoName057(16) hacktivist group targeted multiple sectors across Ukraine and neighboring countries with DDoS attacks....

Threats Icon

Jan 17, 2023

Italy Targeted By Information Stealer Malware

An un-named information stealer was targeting end users in Italy through a phishing campaign using...

Threats Icon

Jan 15, 2023

The Australian healthcare industry was targeted by...

The Australian healthcare industry was targeted by the Gootkit loader malware; initial access was gained...

Threats Icon

Jan 11, 2023

Shc Linux Malware Used To Install XMRig...

External facing Linux servers in South Korea were targeted with a Shc (Shell Script Compiler)...

Threats Icon

Jan 11, 2023

Dridex Returns To Target MacOS With Updated...

Threat actors have been seen targeting Mac users with the Dridex malware. Although the malware...