11 Dec 2018

Darthminer is a recently discovered threat that targets Mac systems via Adobe.  Malwarebytes security researches warn that the threat is actually a combination of two open-source programs.

The threat is distributed through an application called Adobe Zii.  It utilizes a generic Automater applet icon instead of a stolen Adobe Creative Cloud logo.  The fake application runs a shell script that downloads and executes a Python script.  Then it downloads and runs an app named sample.app.  The sample.app appears to be a version of Adobe Zii in an effort to conceal its malicious activity.

Malwarebytes states that “the obfuscated Python script looks for the presence of Little Snitch, a commonly-used outgoing firewall, and stops the infection process if the tool is found.”  They also note that the firewall should have already blocked the script’s download attempts.

Next, the script generates an EmPyre backend door that can execute arbitrary commands on the infected Mac.  Scripts are fetched via that backdoor, and other malicious malware components are installed. It is this backdoor that is the true concern.  Further, a launch agent ensures persistence. As if that weren’t enough, the attack also results in the XMRig cryptominer being installed on the compromised Mac with its own launch agent to keep the process running.

“It’s impossible to know exactly what damage this malware might have done to infected systems. Just because we have only observed the mining behavior does not mean it hasn’t ever done other things,” Malwarebytes notes.  Further analysis of the script also revealed code to download and install a root certificate for the mitmproxy tool.  The tool can intercept web traffic, including encrypted traffic, however, it isn’t active in the observed malware.

A key issue surrounding this threat is software piracy, which will compound Mac infections if the threat is copied and distributed along with the software. Malwarebytes implored people to forego downloading and using pirated software, pointing out that it could cost users more than buying legitimate software. Security awareness training can also prevent many computer and system infection. Learn more about it here.

Schedule an Appointment

Schedule an Appointment

    Our clients are awesome!

    Based on 55 reviews.
    Jeremy Richards
    Jeremy Richards
    2020-03-13
    Petronella provides great advanced digital marketing and automation solutions for my business!
    Kate Swenson
    Kate Swenson
    2020-02-14
    Highly recommended for CMMC certification assistance! Excellent and affordable options for secure data hosting on local infrastructure. 5 stars!
    Tom Matzen
    Tom Matzen
    2020-01-25
    Petronella Technology Group helped us setup our sales and marketing automation, cybersecurity and compliance for our new Blockchain startup. Great to work with! Craig in particular really knows his stuff, can translate into non-tech speak, and has wisdom beyond his years. Highly recommend them.
    Justin Summers
    Justin Summers
    2020-01-14
    Craig is awesome! He is very professional and efficient with his work. I would definitely recommend Petronella Technology to anyone who needs state of the art service.
    Blake Rea
    Blake Rea
    2020-01-14
    Craig is an expert in his field. Impressed by his knowledge, A true pioneer in Cybersecurity. My business is safer thanks to Petronella Tech!
    Robert Friedman
    Robert Friedman
    2020-01-10
    For the last five years Craig has been the Contributing Editor for Cybersecurity for NC Triangle Attorney Law Magazine which I publish. His base of knowledge is always leading edge, pragmatic and early to understand for our readers who are not techies. He is patient and easy to work with.
    Tammy Everett
    Tammy Everett
    2020-01-10
    Craig Petronella, CEO of Petronella Technology Group provided the members of the Defense Alliance of North Carolina expert advice on cybersecurity and NIST compliance. Eye opening experience! Thanks so much!
    Julie Brown
    Julie Brown
    2020-01-09
    Craig and the Petronella Technology Group, Inc. team made HIPAA compliance for my small practice so simple and easy! They helped me with all of my HIPAA training, HIPAA Security Risk Assessment, Penetration Test, and HIPAA secure hosting so I can rest easy.
    Pivot Point
    Pivot Point
    2020-01-03
    Petronella Technology Group helped us with our marketing strategy for our new web startup. Awesome experience!!!!
    Richard Brunet
    Richard Brunet
    2019-12-30

    SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT

    Make It Happen Now

    CLIENT SUPPORT

    Don't Feel Stranded

    CONSULTATION

    Get Best Advice

    PAYMENTS

    Make A Payment

    Top