A bit of a change with the Trickbot delivery system this morning in UK. They are using macro enabled XLS spreadsheet files instead of the usual word docs. This example is an email containing the subject of “September 2018 Payroll Timetable” pretending to come from PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP but actually coming from “Claire.Rhodes@pwc-payroll.co.uk” which is a look-a-like, typo-squatted or other domain that can easily be misidentified, mistaken or confused with the genuine site, with a malicious office attachment is today’s latest spoof of a well-known company, bank or public authority delivering Trickbot banking Trojan
You can now submit suspicious sites, emails and files via our Submissions system
From: Claire Rhodes <Claire.Rhodes@pwc-payroll.co.uk>
Date: Fri 07/09/2018 11:35
Subject: September 2018 Payroll Timetable
Please find attached the September 2018 Payroll Timetable, the timings differ from the usual timetable as I will be going on A/L.
PwC | Manager
Mobile: +44 784 333 1234
1 Hardman Square, Manchester, M3 3EB
——————– End of message text ——————–
This email is confidential and is intended for the addressee only. If you are not the addressee, please delete the email and do not use it in any way.
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP accepts no liability for any use of or reliance on this email by anyone, other than the intended addressee to the extent agreed in the relevant contract for the matter to which this email relates (if any).
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England under registered number OC303525, with its registered address at 1 Embankment Place, London, WC2N 6RH. It is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for designated investment business and by the Solicitors Regulation Authority for regulated legal activities For security purposes and other lawful business purposes, PwC monitors outgoing and incoming emails and may monitor other telecommunications on its email and telecommunications systems.
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP has not been hacked or had their email or other servers compromised. They are not sending the emails to you. They are just innocent victims in exactly the same way as every recipient of these emails.
What has happened is that the criminals sending these have registered various domains that look like genuine Company, Bank, Government or message sending services. Normally there is only newly registered domain that imitate Companies House, HMRC, another Government department, a Bank, file hosting service or a message sending service that can easily be confused with the genuine organisation in some way, that are hosted on & sending emails from 4 different servers.. Some days however we do see dozens or even hundreds of fake domains.
Today’s example of the spoofed domain is, as usual, registered via Godaddy as registrar. Because of new GDPR rules we cannot easily find the registrants name or any further details.
- pwc-payroll.co.uk hosted on & sending emails via 18.104.22.168| 22.214.171.124 |126.96.36.199| 188.8.131.52|
This malware spreadsheet file downloads from http://ayuhas.com/neam.meow which is a renamed .exe file VirusTotal | Gtag Ser 0907
The alternate Download location is http://driveearnings.com/neam.meow
The folder for the files & configs is: C:\Users\[User]\AppData\Roaming\smcatd
All modern versions of word and other office programs, that is 2010, 2013, 2016 and 365, should open all Microsoft office documents that is Word docs, Excel spreadsheet files and PowerPoint etc that are downloaded from the web or received in an email automatically in “protected view” that stops any embedded malware, macros and DDE “exploit /Feature” and embedded ole objects from being displayed and running. Make sure protected view is set in all office programs to protect you and your company from these sorts of attacks and do not over ride it to edit the document. If the protected mode bar appears when opening the document DO NOT follow the advice they give to enable macros or enable editing to see the content. The document will have a warning message, but you will be safe.
Be aware that there are a lot of other dodgy word docs spreading that WILL infect you with no action from you, if you are still using an out dated or vulnerable version of word. This is a good reason to update your office programs to a recent version and stop using office 2003 and 2007. Many of us have continued to use older versions of word and other office programs, because they are convenient, have the functions and settings we are used to and have never seen a need to update to the latest super-duper version.
The risks in using older version are now seriously outweighing the convenience, benefits and cost of keeping an old version going.
Please read our How to protect yourselves page for simple, sensible advice on how to avoid being infected by this sort of socially engineered malware. Also please read our post about word macro malware and how to avoid being infected by them
I strongly urge you to update your office software to the latest version and stop putting yourself at risk, using old out of date software.
Email from: Claire.Rhodes@pwc-payroll.co.uk