A targeted attack campaign that is believed to be state sponsored and uses Adobe and Windows zero-day vulnerabilities to infect victims' systems has been uncovered by researchers at FireEye.

FireEye reported uncovering the "RussianDoll" campaign in a threat advisory, warning it has marked similarities to previously discovered state-sponsored APT28 attacks. APT28 is a cyber espionage group tied to the Russian government.

The strategy sees the attackers target victims with messages containing links to a malicious websites that when clicked act as an HTML/JS launcher page that serves and triggers the Flash exploit.

Mark Kedgley, CTO, New Net Technology comments, “This latest ‘RussianDoll’ attack should come as no real surprise; new exploits are always going to be discovered, which is why it’s critical that all available defences are invoked. Unfortunately, with browser-based exploits being one of the main attack routes, it is both surprising and disappointing to find that many organisations still are failing to get the basics right.

The basic lessons are these:

1. Stop the breach: system hardening remains the most effective way to minimise the enterprise attack surface and free tools like NoScript and EMET are great safety-net add-ons that don’t cost anything to implement other than some user education.

2. Spot the breach: it has to be accepted that 100% protection cannot be guaranteed. Intrusion detection systems are now able to use real-time active file integrity monitoring, which means that if a breach is successful, it is reported and its damage minimised.”

You can read the full article on v3 here.



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