New APT Hacking Group Targets Microsoft IIS Servers with ASP.NET Exploits

APT Hacking Group

A brand new extremely succesful and chronic menace actor has been focusing on main high-profile private and non-private entities within the U.S. as a part of a sequence of focused cyber intrusion assaults by exploiting internet-facing Microsoft Web Info Providers (IIS) servers to infiltrate their networks.

Israeli cybersecurity agency Sygnia, which recognized the marketing campaign, is monitoring the superior, stealthy adversary below the moniker “Praying Mantis” or “TG2021.”

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“TG1021 makes use of a custom-made malware framework, constructed round a standard core, tailored for IIS servers. The toolset is totally risky, reflectively loaded into an affected machine’s reminiscence and leaves little-to-no hint on contaminated targets,” the researchers said. “The menace actor additionally makes use of a further stealthy backdoor and a number of other post-exploitations modules to carry out community reconnaissance, elevate privileges, and transfer laterally inside networks.”

APT Hacking Group

In addition to exhibiting capabilities that present a big effort to keep away from detection by actively interfering with logging mechanisms and efficiently evading business endpoint detection and response (EDR) techniques, the menace actor has been recognized to leverage an arsenal of ASP.NET internet utility exploits to realize an preliminary foothold and backdoor the servers by executing a classy implant named “NodeIISWeb” that is designed to load {custom} DLLs in addition to intercept and deal with HTTP requests acquired by the server.

APT Hacking Group

The vulnerabilities are taken benefit of by the actor embrace:

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Apparently, Sygnia’s investigation into TG1021’s techniques, strategies, and procedures (TTPs) have unearthed “main overlaps” to these of a nation-sponsored actor named “Copy-Paste Compromises,” as detailed in an advisory launched by the Australian Cyber Safety Centre (ACSC) in June 2020, which described a cyber marketing campaign focusing on public-facing infrastructure primarily by way of using unpatched flaws in Telerik UI and IIS servers. Nonetheless, a proper attribution is but to be made.

“Praying Mantis, which has been noticed focusing on high-profile private and non-private entities in two main Western markets, exemplifies a rising development of cyber criminals utilizing refined, nation-state assault strategies to focus on business organizations,” the researchers mentioned. “Steady forensics actions and well timed incident response are important to figuring out and successfully defending networks from assaults by comparable menace actors.”

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