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
4 October, 2022
Also known as
PuffStealer
Rultazo
Global rank
12
Week rank
19
Month rank
19
IOCs
61419

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 to the functions of both the stealer and 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 function.

General description of AZORult malware

A trojan type malware originated in one of the ex-USSR countries. AZORult spyware 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, after every bit of useful data is obtained in campaigns with Hermes and Aurora, 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 kendriknk8523.exe file is then launched, which after a sleep create child process with same name;
  • A child process then proceeds to steal the personal data and connect to the CnC server.

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

azorult execution process tree

Figure 1: Illustrates the life cycle of malware. Process tree 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 the attackers sent carried largely employment-related subjects and included an infected and password-protected resume file that triggered the download of the virus.

AZORult malware execution process

text report of the azorult malware analysis

Figure 2: A text report generated by ANY.RUN

AZORult stealer uses a clever technique to trick various antivirus engines. Particularly, the version of the stealer Trojan distributed in the July 2018 spam campaign was activated after unlocking a password-protected document. Since a password protected the document that was attached to the email, 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 several 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 virus analysis with others, you can create a text report and send it to anyone you want. Just click the "Text report" button. You can save it by using a printer icon in the upper-right corner of the report, or using your browser function by clicking the "Save page as..." or "Print..." buttons. You can also download or share other malware investigations, for example Adwind or Remcos. 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 in the checkbox "Add for printing" on the right side of the sections. On the illustration below, the second section won't be included in the report.

text report for azorult Figure 3: Text report

Conclusion

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

AZORult's distribution in clever email campaigns makes becoming a victim of the stealer Trojan by accident relatively easy. The 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
198.252.102.186
5.79.66.145
172.105.27.61
77.222.40.223
185.90.59.42
188.209.52.233
185.178.208.147
37.48.65.153
172.67.223.149
172.67.200.47
172.67.129.116
104.21.1.154
193.151.89.76
94.228.124.41
185.174.174.220
185.215.113.89
136.144.41.124
194.31.98.183
84.38.129.36
45.133.1.48
Hashes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cdn.discordap.com
www.youtube-nocookies.com
youtubeunblock.com
i.garmin.co.kr
jpmorganbank.com
bigtitslots.com
mercantedifiori.com
www.mehakmirza.com
www.pinklips.asia
store.skinnyandyoung.com
shop.eromini.com
blog.gojhonny.com
gccs.cc
rasenalong.com
fafa6.com
nabtabhacks.com
allyoucanleet.com
www.hulusearch.com
livetv-media.com
www.myexchangeworld.com

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