Stabuniq malware found on servers at U.S. financial institutions

The malware appears to just be performing reconnaissance for now

Security researchers from Symantec have identified an information-stealing Trojan program that was used to infect computer servers belonging to various U.S. financial institutions.

Dubbed Stabuniq, the Trojan program was found on mail servers, firewalls, proxy servers, and gateways belonging to U.S. financial institutions, including banking firms and credit unions, Symantec software engineer Fred Gutierrez said Friday in a blog post.

"Approximately half of unique IP addresses found with Trojan.Stabuniq belong to home users," Gutierrez said. "Another 11 percent belong to companies that deal with Internet security (due, perhaps, to these companies performing analysis of the threat). A staggering 39 percent, however, belong to financial institutions."

Based on a map showing the threat's distribution in the U.S. that was published by Symantec, the vast majority of systems infected with Stabuniq are located in the eastern half of the country, with strong concentrations in the New York and Chicago areas.

Compared to other Trojan programs, Stabuniq infected a relatively small number of computers, which seems to suggest that its authors might have targeted specific individuals and organizations, Gutierrez said.

The malware was distributed using a combination of spam emails and malicious websites that hosted Web exploit toolkits. Such toolkits are commonly used to silently install malware on Web users' computers by exploiting vulnerabilities in outdated browser plug-ins like Flash Player, Adobe Reader or Java.

Once installed, the Stabuniq Trojan program collects information about the compromised computer, like its name, running processes, OS and service pack version, assigned IP (Internet Protocol) address and sends this information to command-and-control (C&C) servers operated by the attackers.

"At this stage we believe the malware authors may simply be gathering information," Gutierrez said.

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags symantecsecurityfinancespywareindustry verticalsmalware

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by Lucian Constantin

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Will your data protection strategy be enough when disaster strikes?

    Speakers: - Paul O’Connor, Engagement leader - Performance Audit Group, Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO) - Nigel Phair, Managing Director, Centre for Internet Safety - Joshua Stenhouse, Technical Evangelist, Zerto - Anthony Caruana, CSO MC & Moderator

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place