Getting inside the head of a hacker is not very hard. This is because most of the time, their attacks are driven by money. Majority of the time when you learn about ransomware, virus, or phishing attacks, it ends up being about making money by ripping victims off. Cybercriminals have no qualms, and they employ every tool and tactic at their disposal to make some money.
Nevertheless, there are certain times when a cyber attack has a more shrewd intention than taking money. That might indeed be the problem with this malware attack that was recently seen.
This Malware has been hiding since 2013
Security researchers at ESET newly found a sneaky kind of cyber-espionage malware. What makes it so sneaky is that it has been operating for the past five years but was only recently discovered.
This sneaky malware is named InvisiMole. It is an extremely spooky malware as it turns affected devices into tools for spying.
If this malware has compromised your device, the cybercriminal is able to listen and observe all that is going on around you. It is because the malware takes charge of the video cam and mic of the infected device.
The attackers have done a commendable job at hiding this attack. So much so that cyber researchers have neither been able to track the person or organization behind this attack nor find out how this malware gets installed on affected gadgets. One of the theories is that the attacker has to obtain physical access to the targeted devices really.
One researcher who found this malware said that their telemetry shows that the malicious attackers behind this malware have been operating at least since the year 2013; even then the cyber-espionage malware was neither examined nor detected until detected by ESET products on infected PCs in Russia and Ukraine. All of the infection vectors, comprising installation expedited by getting physical access to the device, are possible.
The big news is this is considered to be a highly targeted malware attack. InvisiMole has infected only a couple of dozen computers in Ukraine and Russia at this time.
Still, it does not suggest other advanced attacks like this cannot spread to the remainder of our devices. As a matter of fact, with all the mime cybercriminals in the world, it is more probable than not for this kind of spyware to go international.
How can you protect yourself?
Even Mark Zuckerberg, Edward Snowden, and James Comey have physically covered up their webcams. It is one of the most convenient ways to stop attackers from remotely seeing into your life. Use your cam app or Skype test call feature to check whether the web camera is covered completely. Apart from using tape, you can also purchase a real webcam cover.
If you have to use your webcam regularly then instead of covering it up, just ensure that your computer is turned off when it is not being used. Moreover, keep scanning your computer periodically to check for malware.