"High Roller" Hacker Attack is Stealing Hundreds of Millions From the Rich
June 26, 2012 3:13 PM
comment(s) - last by
Attack is an extension of the man-in-the-browser attack methodology
Security researchers admit they're still struggling to defeat man-in-the-browser (MitB) attacks. The best-known example of this attack is the Zeus (
, etc.) botnet, which is comprised of machines infected by drive-by-download or phishing attacks.
Researchers are currently only 23 percent effective at detecting and removing Zeus variants, although
attacks on command and control servers
have been somewhat effective. The malware operates via a browser extension in Firefox or via a Browser Helper Object in Microsoft Corp.'s (
) Internet Explorer. The Trojan is used to carry out traditional malware activities, such as spamming and bank transaction interception/modification.
I. Hackers Steal From the Rich, Give to Themselves With Op. High Roller
Now even as researchers continue to struggle with Zeus and
its successor SpyEye
, there's an even more sinister malware storm brewing that Guardian Analytics and Intel Corp. (
) subsidiary McAfee
have been tracking
[PDF], dubbed "Operation High Roller".
The new attack is much more organized, driven via cloud controllers, versus Zeus where infected machines often operated in a rogue lone manner.
Using cloud servers, machines infected with High Roller Trojans are hit with server-based fraudulent bank transactions totaling up to $130,000 USD (€100,000). These very large transactions are ferried through "mule" accounts also operated by the control-servers. The attacks use Zeus or SpyEye for reconnaissance and then use compromised local machines to target large accounts via
"spear phishing" tactics
An example "spear phishing" message from an infected machine. [Image Source: McAfee]
The new multi-approach malware is able to circumvent typical "chip and pin" physical security features, such as the smartcard reader ID systems commonly used in Europe. It targets primarily "high rollers" -- accounts with more than €250,000, the kind commonly maintained by wealthy individuals and corporations. This differs from Zeus and other past attacks that primarily targeted the masses with smaller transactions
Op. high roller is stealing millions from the wealthy [Image Source: The Hibernia Times]
II. Sophisticated Cloud-Commanded Malware Hits U.S.
The attacks initially targeted Europe, but have since spread to the U.S. and Columbia. The hardest hit region in Europe, according to McAfee is the Netherlands, which suffered over €141M ($175M USD). However attacks in the U.S. are also escalating with 8 to 10 malware variants currently attacking 109 businesses.
Texas is the state currently being hardest hit by the attacks. Numerous account holders in New York, Georgia, and California were also targeted.
Many states have been hit by Operation High Roller. [Image Source: McAfee]
Most of the attacks originated from command-and-control servers than Russia, though some C&C servers were also found in China and the U.S., among other places.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: phishing still works?
6/26/2012 4:25:12 PM
To paraphrase George Carlin, think about how stupid the average person is, and realize that half of the people out there are even less intelligent than that.
Phishing will probably work forever. Maybe not at high success rates, but enough to make it profitable.
"The whole principle [of censorship] is wrong. It's like demanding that grown men live on skim milk because the baby can't have steak." -- Robert Heinlein
Malware Focusing on Macs, Mobile Devices Increasing
May 24, 2012, 9:18 AM
Wrath of the Titans: Microsoft, U.S. Feds Slay Godly "Zeus" Botnets
March 26, 2012, 3:21 PM
China Appears to Have Committed "Unprecedented" Cyber-Attack on Canada
February 17, 2011, 10:32 AM
Kneber Botnet May Have Infected 75,000 PCs Globally
February 18, 2010, 10:44 AM
AT&T Defeats Purpose of New Apple SIM, Locks iPad Air 2 SIMs to Its Network
October 24, 2014, 2:17 PM
Microsoft to Discontinue Free, Ad-supported Xbox Music Service on December 1
October 23, 2014, 10:03 AM
Christian Bale Confirmed to Play Steve Jobs in Upcoming Film
October 23, 2014, 8:43 AM
Monica Lewinsky Speaks Out, Calls Herself "Patient-Zero" for Internet Cyberbullying
October 21, 2014, 2:25 PM
Google Fiber Finally Heading to Austin, Texas in December
October 16, 2014, 11:48 AM
Dropbox Flexes Security Muscle, Appears to Have Squashed Password Breach
October 15, 2014, 12:12 PM
Most Popular Articles
Chinese Government Declares Digital War Against America's Top Tech Firms
October 20, 2014, 12:07 PM
Report: 2015 Ford Focus Electric MSRP Slashed by $6,000, Will Retail for $29,995
October 18, 2014, 6:23 PM
Apple Releases iOS 8.1; Adds Apple Pay Support, SMS Relay, Instant Hotspot
October 20, 2014, 1:00 PM
Windows 8.1 + Android "Sell Mini PC" w/ Bay Trail Creates New PC Form Factor
October 20, 2014, 5:07 PM
Update: Motorola Droid Turbo Coming Oct 28, 48-hour Battery Life Confirmed
October 19, 2014, 9:19 PM
Latest Blog Posts
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information