A mysterious hacker gang is on a supply-chain hacking spree

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software supply-chain attack represents one of the most insidious forms of hacking. By breaking into a developer’s network and hiding malicious code within apps and software updates that users trust, supply-chain hijackers can smuggle their malware onto hundreds of thousands—or millions—of computers in a single operation, without the slightest sign of foul play. Now what appears to be a single group of hackers has managed that trick repeatedly, going on a devastating supply-chain hacking spree—and the hackers have become more advanced and stealthy as they go.

Over the past three years, supply-chain attacks that exploited the software distribution channels of at least six different companies have now all been tied to a single group of likely Chinese-speaking hackers. The group is known as Barium, or sometimes ShadowHammer, ShadowPad, or Wicked Panda, depending on which security firm you ask. More than perhaps any other known hacker team, Barium appears to use supply-chain attacks as its core tool. Its attacks all follow a similar pattern: seed out infections to a massive collection of victims, then sort through them to find espionage targets.

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NewEgg cracked in breach, hosted card-stealing code within its own checkout

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British Airways. The attackers, referred to by researchers as Magecart, managed to inject 15 lines of JavaScript into NewEgg’s webstore checkout that forwarded credit card and other data to a server with a domain name that made it look like part of NewEgg’s Web infrastructure. It appears that all Web transactions over the past month were affected by the breach.

Details of the breach were reported by the security research firms RiskIQ (which exposed the code behind the British Airways attack) and Volexity Threat Research today. The attack was shut down by NewEgg on September 18, but it appears to have been actively siphoning off payment data since August 16, according to reports from the security researchers. Yonathan Klijnsma, head researcher at RiskIQ, said that the methods and code used are virtually identical to the attack on British Airways—while the Ticketmaster breach was caused by code injected from a third-party service provider, both the BA breach and the NewEgg attack were the result of a compromise of JavaScript libraries hosted by the companies themselves.

The domain used by the attack, neweggstats.com, was hosted on a server at the Dutch hosting provider WorldStream and had a certificate. The domain was registered through Namecheap on August 13, using a registration privacy protection company in Panama. The domain’s TLS certificate was purchased through Comodo on the same day. The Comodo certificate was likely the most expensive part of the attackers’ infrastructure.

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Hack causes pacemakers to deliver life-threatening shocks

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CareLink 2090 programmer, a device doctors use to control pacemakers after they’re implanted in patients.

Because updates for the programmer aren’t delivered over an encrypted HTTPS connection and firmware isn’t digitally signed, the researchers were able to force it to run malicious firmware that would be hard for most doctors to detect. From there, the researchers said, the compromised machine could cause implanted pacemakers to make life-threatening changes in therapies, such as increasing the number of shocks delivered to patients.

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