Experts from IBM X-Force
“X-Force recent analysis identified a new
The phishing messages use an archive attachment, that contained an executable named “Coronavirus Disease (Covid-19) CURE.exe.”
The file is a .NET executable that acts as the HawkEye loader that is obfuscated by the combination of ConfuserEx and Cassandra protector
Once executed, the loader executes the Interfaces2.dll and loads a Bitmap image containing embedded assembly code.
“The image is parsed by columns from top to bottom, starting from the leftmost column to go to the right,” the researchers say. “For each pixel thus encountered, if the color of these (including the alpha channel) is different from the color of the pixel, a (0, 0), or in the upper left corner, adds three bytes to the payload array.” continues the analysis. “The three bytes are, in order: the red, green, and blue channel of the pixel.”
The decoded payload is a .NET executable file ReZer0V2.exe that attempts to turn off the Windows Defender by changing specific registry items.
The malicious code also implements evasion features (anti-sandbox and anti-virtual machine (VM)) then injects the HawkEye keylogger into specific running processes.
“Speaking of prevention drugs and cures in an email that is spoofed to appear directly from the Director of the WHO in this current situation is expected to be highly successful,” concludes
“Especially in countries where COVID-19 has impacted large numbers, the hope of finding a vaccine, cure or even drugs, are stronger. Unfortunately, those hopes are shattered by the fact, that victims once infected with the
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