'Nitro' Hackers Use Stock Malware to Steal Chemical, Defense Secrets

Tuesday Nov 1st 2011 by Datamation.com Staff

Researchers trace some of the attacks back to an individual in China.

Computerworld: Researchers from security vendor Symantec have published a new report about a cyberattack that used "off-the-shelf" malware to obtain corporate secrets from 48 companies. The "Nitro" campaign relied on the Poison Ivy remote-access Trojan (RAT), which was created by a Chinese hacker and can be easily downloaded from the Internet, to target a variety of firms, many in the chemical and defense industries. In order to get the malware into the corporate networks, the attackers sent highly targeted e-mail messages to just a few people at each company.

One of the command-and-control servers used for the attack is owned by an individual in China. It's not clear if he was the sole perpetrator or if other hackers or the Chinese government were also involved in the attacks.

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