Cryptominer, Credentials Thief Distributed Through JavaScript Package Manager

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The NPM repository account linked to a popular node.js was hacked for some time on Friday and used to distribute malicious script, according to security firm Sophos.

NPM is a package manager for the JavaScript programming language. In a blog postSean Gallagher, Senior Threat Researcher at Sophos, said the script in question installed a monero miner on Linux systems while on Windows systems malware that collected credentials had been removed.

The account used was that of the developer of a package known as UAParser.js, a library used by web applications to detect information about browser types and operating systems.

“The attacker used this access to modify the library’s deployment package, adding instructions to run a new script named preinstall.js,” Gallagher wrote.




“Preinstall.bat and preinstall.sh have also been added to the package, Windows and Linux scripts to be executed by the node.js package.

“The hijacker then pushed the changes in the form of three new versions: 0.7.29, 0.8.0 and 1.0.0.”

After a few hours, the developer in question noticed that something was wrong and released clean versions of the library.

Interestingly, the script that was deleted on Linux systems checked the country code and did not run if the returned code was for Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, or Belarus.

The script downloaded a file from a server in Latvia that included the miner.

“The repeated attempts to use NPM to distribute miners on Linux systems over the past month are further proof that Linux servers continue to be a very attractive target for cybercriminals – and steal processing power for the cryptomining is an easy way to monetize criminal access to these. systems, ”Gallagher concluded.

“Many Linux servers run without any virus protection installed because their operators want to avoid suffering an impact on performance, but that makes detecting and mitigating attacks like these more complex – and mining monero. for someone else is not exactly optimizing server performance. “

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