Azorult

AZORult can steal banking information including passwords and credit card details as well as cryptocurrency. This constantly updated information stealer malware should not be taken lightly, as it continues to be an active threat.

Type
Stealer
Origin
ex-USSR
First seen
1 January, 2016
Last seen
19 January, 2021
Also known as
PuffStealer
Rultazo
Global rank
11
Week rank
14
Month rank
15
IOCs
12960

What is AZORult malware?

AZORult is an information stealer malware that is targeted at stealing credentials and accounts. Updated multiple times over the years, AZORult continues to be an active concern for the users, stealing information such as banking passwords, credit card details, browser histories, and even cryptocurrency.

AZORult stealer was discovered, analyzed and documented for the first time on July 26, 2016, by Proofpoint researchers. At the time, the virus was distributed together with another trojan called Chthonic. However, subsequent spam email campaigns started distributing AZORult as the main payload while Hermes and Aurora ransomware were added as additional payloads. A new strain of the stealer Trojan was documented In July 2018. The analysis revealed that it brought several upgrades the functionality of both the stealer as well as to the loader of the virus, additionally, allowing to distribute AZORult with the RIG exploit kit. The latest recorded version of the malware is v3.3, this strain was first documented in October 2018. Most notably, this strain updated a way of encrypting the C&C domain string and improved crypto-stealing functionality.

General description of AZORult

A trojan type malware that originated in one of the ex-USSR countries, AZORult searches for useful information on the affected computer and sends it to the C2 server to potentially steal the victim’s bank account data. AZORult can steal cookies, browser autofill information, desktop files, chat history and more.

Interestingly, to get into a machine the virus in some cases requires secondary malware like HawkEye or Seamless. Notably, In campaigns with Hermes and Aurora, after every bit of useful data is obtained user files are encrypted and a ransom is requested to restore the lost data.

One of the interesting features of AZORult is that after execution the malware is removed from the system due to the lack of a persistence mechanism.

Malware analysis of AZORult

ANY.RUN displays the execution process of AZORult in an interactive virtual environment. As shown by the sandbox simulation, the virus launches the following process during its execution:

  • Firstly, a Microsoft Office file opened and WINWORD.EXE with enable macros is executed;
  • The malware runs EQNEDT32.EXE and downloads a malicious executable through the exploitation of the CVE-2017-11882 Microsoft Office Equation Editor vulnerability;
  • A 3.exe file is then launched which changes the autorun value in the registry. A malicious executable file then proceeds to make changes in the registry so that the system runs it at the system start;
  • A malicious executable file launches itself and then proceeds to steal the personal data and connect to the CnC server;
  • Then, a malicious executable file starts cmd.exe to delete itself after a 3-second timeout.

The execution process of AZORult can be viewed in more detail in the video provided by ANY.RUN

azorult execution process graph

Figure 1: Illustrates the life cycle of malware. Graph generated by ANY.RUN

How to avoid infection by AZORult?

AZORult is distributed mainly using spam email campaigns or via the RIG exploit kit. Notably, a major AZORult distribution campaign was observed on July 18, 2018, targeting North America.

Spam emails that were sent by the attackers carried largely employment-related subjects and included an infected and password protected resume file, that triggered the download of the virus.

AZORult execution process

Below is an illustration of the execution process created by the ANY.RUN interactive malware hunting service.

azorult execution process tree

Figure 2. AZORult execution process in ANY.RUN

text report of the azorult malware analysis

Figure 3: A text report generated by ANY.RUN

AZORult stealer uses a clever technique to trick various antivirus engines. Particularly, version of the stealer Trojan distributed in July 2018 spam campaign was activated after unlocking a password-protected document. Since the document that was attached to the email was protected by a password, antiviruses had not been able to scan it and determine whether it was malicious or not. For the virus to become active, the victim had to unlock and enable macros for the document. In this particular campaign, the malware was distributed with two payloads embedded in the main binary. Both payloads were dropped to the disk and executed with the first executable payload being the information gatherer – AZORult itself and then the secondary ransomware.

It should be noted, that in aforecited ANY.RUN simulation AZORult uses an exploit when a Microsoft Office file is opened, allowing to embed a number of malicious OLE objects into a document and executes arbitrary code on a machine and even download any file from a remote server and execute it.

How to share your Azorult malware analysis with others?

If you want to share your analysis with others you can create a text report and send it to anyone you want to, just click the "Text report" button. You can save it using your browser functionality either by clicking "Save page as..." or "Print..." buttons. Note that you can choose that information section in your report you want to print or save into a file using the "Print..." button by clicking on the little printer icon on the left side of the sections. On the illustration below the first section with a grey colored button won't be included in the report but a section with a black colored printer button will be.

text report for azorult Figure 4: Azorult text report

Conclusion

AZORult remains to be a highly dangerous trojan. The stealer Trojan has been upgraded throughout its lifespan and currently poses even more dangerous than during the first days of its lifespan. Particularly, most recent versions are distributed in bundles with ransomware and are able to steal cryptocurrency from the victims.

Its distribution in clever email campaigns makes becoming a victim of the stealer Trojan by accident relatively easy. Interactive sandbox analysis provided by services like ANY.RUN is a great way to learn more about the threat and greatly increase cybersecurity.

IOCs

IP addresses
104.18.21.191
104.26.9.44
195.216.243.155
104.26.8.44
207.180.199.176
104.18.225.52
104.18.226.52
141.8.192.151
172.67.218.84
156.96.44.201
204.11.56.48
45.141.152.18
198.54.114.241
172.67.131.251
172.67.69.226
185.176.43.104
45.137.22.102
23.111.184.119
193.239.147.212
69.172.200.235
Hashes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googme.com
socks5.duckdns.org
access098.duckdns.org
8e3d-wzr.duckdns.org
isns.net
freegeoip.app
onzcda.com
htsmx.net
89gospel.com
e.connectad.io
dlwordpress.com
www.dottowels.com
mike101.duckdns.org
majul.com
becharnise.ir
wallflowersandrakes.com
celebration-studio.com
spotitfy.com
www.sciencepub123.com
proxyfreaks.com

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