The North Korean hacking group Lazarus made recent news having been identified as targeting an aerospace company located in Spain. How did the attackers gain access to the company? Via LinkedIn!
As you'll be aware, LinkedIn provides an easy to search database of professionals listed by their respective name and job title, so finding and connecting with a target is straight-forward.
In this attack, the goal of the threat actor was to lure the employee into a conversation and, at some point, get them to download and execute a malicious file; in the case of the aerospace company this was disguised as part of a quiz to take in relation to a job opportunity, named Quiz1.iso.
Here comes the technical bit…
Quiz.iso is then unpacked into Quiz1.exe which in turn is executed to start the second stage of the malware infection via DLL side-loading. Using the legitimate PresentationHost.exe it pulls and executes a malicious .dll (mscoree.dll) leading to the end goal of the attacker which is to install the NickelLoader Malware onto the system.
Nickeloader provides two backdoors and a hybrid of information stealing and allowing for RCE (Remote Code Execution) of the infected system.
The EMCRC has previously warned about the dangers of cyber criminals using LinkedIn and other social media platforms in conjunction with social engineering attempts. However, due to the increased sophistication of phishing attacks and the nature of many organisation's public communications, we're re-highlighting this phishing method.
It is recommended that organisations seek to distribute communications to employees in order to raise awareness of LinkedIn being used to gain access to companies via malicious downloads using files named quiz.iso, questionnaire.iso, and so on.
Report all Fraud and Cybercrime to Action Fraud by calling 0300 123 2040 or online. Forward suspicious emails to email@example.com. Report SMS scams by forwarding the original message to 7726 (spells SPAM on the keypad).