After news of WireLurker began circulating in handful Chinese-language tech forums over the summer, a Chinese-language technology blogger conducted online research in an attempt to track down the author of WireLurker and engage him in an online chat. While it is unclear whether he found the actual author, it appears he was able to locate someone associated with the company that produced WireLurker and controlled the Command and Control (C2) domain.
The following is a translated summary of the Chinese blogger’s investigation with supplemental research and analysis conducted by Unit 42. Due to the amount of personal information the original blog contains, we will make the blog address available only upon request.
Today we published a new research paper on WireLurker, a family of malware targeting both Mac OS and iOS systems for the past six months. We believe that this malware family heralds a new era in malware attacking Apple’s desktop and mobile platforms based on the following characteristics:
- Of known malware families distributed through trojanized / repackaged OS X applications, it is the biggest in scale we have ever seen
- It is only the second known malware family that attacks iOS devices through OS X via USB
- It is the first malware to automate generation of malicious iOS applications, through binary file replacement
- It is the first known malware that can infect installed iOS applications similar to a traditional virus
- It is the first in-the-wild malware to install third-party applications on non-jailbroken iOS devices through enterprise provisioning
WireLurker was used to trojanize 467 OS X applications on the Maiyadi App Store, a third-party Mac application store in China. In the past six months, these 467 infected applications were downloaded over 356,104 times and may have impacted hundreds of thousands of users.
How It Works
If you purchased an iPhone 6 recently, you probably received this email:
Some of you may have even clicked the “Verify Now” link and entered your Apple ID account information. I hope not, though, because this email is not from Apple. It’s a phishing email meant to trick recipients into giving sensitive information to the attacker who sent it.
This email illustrates two things: …Continue reading