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Microsoft Secure

FinFisher exposed: A researcher’s tale of defeating traps, tricks, and complex virtual machines

Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection (Office 365 ATP) blocked many notable zero-day exploits in 2017. In our analysis, one activity group stood out: NEODYMIUM. This threat actor is remarkable for two reasons: Its access to sophisticated zero-day exploits for Microsoft and Adobe software Its use of an advanced piece of government-grade surveillance spyware FinFisher, also...

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Twin zero-day attacks: PROMETHIUM and NEODYMIUM target individuals in Europe

Targeted attacks are typically carried out against individuals to obtain intellectual property and other valuable data from target organizations. These individuals are either directly in possession of the targeted information or are able to connect to networks where the information resides. Microsoft researchers have encountered twin threat activity groups that appear to target individuals for...

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Our commitment to our customers’ security

Windows is the only platform with a customer commitment to investigate reported security issues and proactively update impacted devices as soon as possible. And we take this responsibility very seriously. Recently, the activity group that Microsoft Threat Intelligence calls STRONTIUM conducted a low-volume spear-phishing campaign. Customers using Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 Anniversary Update are...

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Reverse engineering DUBNIUM – Stage 2 payload analysis

Recently, we blogged about the basic functionality and features of the DUBNIUM advanced persistent threat (APT) activity group Stage 1 binary and Adobe Flash exploit used during the December 2015 incident (Part 1, Part 2). In this blog, we will go through the overall infection chain structure and the Stage 2 executable details. Stage 2...

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Reverse-engineering DUBNIUM’s Flash-targeting exploit

The DUBNIUM campaign in December involved one exploit in-the-wild that affected Adobe Flash Player. In this blog, we’re going to examine the technical details of the exploit that targeted vulnerability CVE-2015-8651. For more details on this vulnerability, see Adobe Security Bulletin APSB16-01. Note that Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 was protected from this attack due...

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Reverse-engineering DUBNIUM

DUBNIUM (which shares indicators with what Kaspersky researchers have called DarkHotel) is one of the activity groups that has been very active in recent years, and has many distinctive features. We located multiple variants of multiple-stage droppers and payloads in the last few months, and although they are not really packed or obfuscated in a...

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Targeted Attacks Video Series

Many of the CISOs I talk to tell me that “Advanced Persistent Threats” (APT) style attacks are among their top concerns.  As I have written about before, the problem with the term APT is that it doesn’t describe this category of threats very accurately.  This makes it harder to understand and mitigate this type of...

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5 Top Trends Redefining CSO Priorities

The CSO carries a heavy load, as the person responsible for overall direction of security functions associated with IT applications, communications, and computing services and security within the enterprise. Part of what makes the role of the CSO so challenging is that trends introduce change, and the changes are cumulative. Few of the old security...

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