Cybercriminals are turning security tools into a means of attack

In a strange transform of occasions, well-liked penetration tests tools had been discovered as staying most generally employed by attackers. Cybersecurity scientists at Recorded Future’s Insikt Group discovered Cobalt Strike and Metasploit as the most well-liked option for web hosting malware command and command (C&C) servers.

The scientists collected more than ten,000 exclusive C&C servers across at the very least eighty malware households through 2020. 

“The most generally observed households had been dominated by open supply or commercially available tooling,” the scientists wrote.

Completely wrong aspect of the fence

Penetration tests tools, also recognised as offensive security tools, and purple teaming tools, have also discovered their way in the attackers’ toolkits in modern several years, the report discovered.

Though Cobalt Strike accounted for one,441 of the C&C servers, Metasploit adopted shut driving with one,122. Alongside one another, the two had been discovered in 25% of the full C&C servers. Also, the group also observed the adoption of lesser-recognised open supply tools these as Octopus C2, Mythic, and Covenant. 

Outlining the good reasons for their reputation, the scientists observe that these tools have graphical user interfaces, and are carefully documented, which will make them less complicated to use, even by fairly inexperienced attackers.

That explained, quite a few of the teams who abused these tools had been state-sponsored bad actors, according to the scientists, and had been engaged in espionage functions. 

“Over the future year, Recorded Future expects even more adoption of open supply tools that have not long ago attained reputation, specially Covenant, Octopus C2, Sliver, and Mythic,” create the scientists. 

The researcher’s report also includes quite a few other attention-grabbing conclusions. For instance, the leading 4 web hosting vendors with the most variety of C&C servers in their infrastructure, namely Amazon, Digital Ocean, Choopa, and Zenlayer, had been all based in the U.S.

By way of: ZDNet