Hackers add exploit kit to article asking 'Is cyber crime out of control?'
Net menaces show warped sense of humour in attack on Grauniad story
Hackers have hosed an article published by The Guardian using the world's nastiest exploit kit Angler to pop the machines of exposed readers.
The attack firmly answers the article's headline positing the question 'is cybercrime out of control', based on arguments in a book by one Misha Glenny.
Angler is the most capable and prolific exploit kit in use by criminals. It allows attackers to run choice cuts of the latest Flash, Java, and browser exploits through which un=patched users can be targeted.
FireEye research trio J. Gomez, Kenneth Hsu, and Kenneth Johnson found hackers had dropped a gnarly URL into the syndication links portion of the page which loaded in the background and redirected users to Angler.
"When the syndication link is loaded in the background, readers are eventually redirected to Angler’s landing page via injected HTML that crafts the request to the Angler landing page.
"A memory corruption vulnerability (CVE-2014-6332) in Windows Object Linking and Embedding Automation [is] triggered through VBScript with Internet Explorer.
"In this attack the exploit was based on a publicly available proof-of-concept where techniques were used to attempt arbitrary code execution."
Angler seeks out any active anti-virus and security products and changes behaviour if the tools are found, forcing the attack to silently fail or run a benign script.
The Guardian says it is fixing the hack.
It comes as The Independent found one of its dusty unloved Word Press sites was hacked through a Flash exploit and was serving shoddy ransomware to a very small number of readers. ®
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