Chinese Hackers used a Demodex Rootkit to target Computers in Malaysia

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A formerly unknown Chinese-speaking threat actor has been linked to a long-standing evasive operation aimed at South East Asian targets as far back as July 2020 to deploy a kernel-mode rootkit on compromised Windows systems.

Attacks mounted by the hacking group, dubbed GhostEmperor by Kaspersky, are also said to have used a “sophisticated multi-stage malware framework” that allows for providing persistence and remote control over the targeted hosts.

The Russian cybersecurity firm called the rootkit Demodex, with infections reported across several high-profile entities in Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Indonesia, in addition to outliers located in Egypt, Ethiopia, and Afghanistan.

“[Demodex] is used to hide the user mode malware’s artefacts from investigators and security solutions, while demonstrating an interesting undocumented loading scheme involving the kernel mode component of an open-source project named Cheat Engine to bypass the Windows Driver Signature Enforcement mechanism,” Kaspersky researchers said.

Full story at Securelist (via TheHackerNews)

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