LokiBot

6
Global rank
7
Month rank
7
Week rank
11926
IOCs

LokiBot was developed in 2015 to steal information from a variety of applications. Despite the age, this malware is still rather popular among cybercriminals.

Stealer
Type
ex-USSR territory
Origin
3 May, 2015
First seen
3 June, 2023
Last seen
Also known as
Loki
LokiPWS

How to analyze LokiBot with ANY.RUN

Stealer
Type
ex-USSR territory
Origin
3 May, 2015
First seen
3 June, 2023
Last seen

IOCs

IP addresses
185.53.179.29
173.239.8.164
66.96.149.17
204.11.56.48
172.67.216.188
185.14.29.199
72.52.238.62
192.64.119.229
172.67.157.158
208.79.237.170
199.79.62.121
192.168.100.155
50.63.202.62
91.239.235.6
107.180.40.141
103.195.185.104
198.57.149.40
104.18.40.246
192.168.100.211
195.20.51.163
Hashes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majul.com
parkingcrew.net
qxq.ddns.net
726512.parkingcrew.net
www.sciencepub123.com
www.creativoslibres.mx
realitycheats.com
www.oced.org.tr
epdf.pub
secureanalytic.com
live.harleyquinnwidget.live
www.eilattimes.co.il
allprivatekeys.com
gabriellalovecats.com
family1st.jp
imgh.us
www.loktrk.com
purpleisp.net
www.digitale-elite.com
magnigenie.com
Last Seen at

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What is LokiBot malware?

LokiBot, also known as Loki-bot or Loki bot, is an information stealer malware that collects credentials from the most widely used web browsers, FTP, email clients, and over a hundred software tools installed on the infected system. It was developed in one of the ex-USSR countries.

The trojan was discovered for the first time on May 3rd, 2015, from a sale announcement made by the creator, and the malware is still active to this day.

General description of LokiBot

Initially created and sold by a hacker known as "lokistov" or "Carter," the first versions of LokiBot spyware used to cost up to $400. However, almost identical malware appeared on hacker forums soon after, available for as little as $80 from several sellers. As it is thought, "lokistov" himself was hacked, and the virus's source code was leaked, allowing others to use its techniques and sell remarkably similar malware.

Curiously, a researcher subsequently found out that the first version of the virus got patched by someone without accessing the source code, which gave the hacker community the ability to set a series of individual domains used to receive the retrieved data.

Even though several versions of the virus exist today, after the analysis, it was found that all of them are actually modifications of the original malware. Interestingly, the server to which LokiBot stealer sends data is unique for every particular malware sample.

In the latest versions of LokiBot, a third stage is added to the process of compromising systems, besides more encryption, a technique to escape detection. Each layer of the trojan is encrypted to attempt to hide the eventual source of code.

The malware uses the known technique of blurring images in documents to force users to enable macros. This trick infects machines quite successfully.

LokiBot malware analysis

A video displaying the simulation of the contamination process created by the ANY.RUN interactive malware hunting service provides the perfect opportunity for malware analysis to see how the contamination process unfolds on an infected machine. As shown in the simulation, LokiBot trojan needs email attachments, such as a Microsoft Office file or an archive file to be opened to enter an active phase.

process graph of lokibot stealer execution Figure 1: Process graph generated by the ANY.RUN malware hunting service

During the analysis, we found out that the malware life cycle can be broken down into the following stages:

  • Contamination. The victim downloads a malicious archive or a Microsoft Office file which eventually downloads the malware;
  • Being packed initially, the keylogger unpacks itself and begins the execution of the main payload;
  • The virus creates unique loop-functions for each application that it is targeting and saves retrieved data into a buffer;
  • Then, a registry key is modified, and the trojan is explicitly copied into a folder with a specific name unique name under the %APPDATA% folder. This allows the virus to establish persistence. MachineGuid MD5 is used for the name generation, and the name can also be used as a Mutex as well as bot-id. As the last action of this step, the virus generates a registry key that points to the file it copied before to the specific folder inside the %APPDATA% folder;
  • Then, depending on if the current user is privileged or not, the virus sets persistence either under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE or KEY_CURRENT_USER;
  • Next, general system information is sent to the C&C server;
  • For persistence, the keylogger then applies the triple-DES encryption technique to the URL and the registry key;
  • After this, the virus starts waiting for commands from C&C, creating a new thread to detect the C&C response.

How to avoid infection by LokiBot virus?

Since LokiBot spyware requires macros to be activated to infect the system, attackers will do everything in their power to make the victim enable them. Thus keeping macros turned off is the best bet to stay protected from the trojan. Notably, extra caution should be exhibited when a document downloaded from a suspicious source or an unknown email address prompts to enable macros.

Also, having antivirus software from trusted developers and keeping it updated is an excellent way to decrease the probability of becoming the malware's victim and protecting credentials. Another good common practice is to be highly mindful when opening attachments or clicking links in emails from unidentified sources as it's a popular method of malware spreading, including FormBook and Dridex.

Distribution of LokiBot

LokiBot stealer is distributed mostly via mail-spam campaigns, prompting the user to download a malicious file that is attached. Remarkably, the three most commonly used types of files are Microsoft Office documents configured to begin the download and installation processes of the malware, archive files containing a Loki-Bot executable or ISO files, and a Loki-Bot executable.

LokiBot execution process

Interactive sandbox simulation conducted on the ANY.RUN malware hunting service allows us to take a closer look at how the execution process of LokiBot unfolds in a case when a contaminated Microsoft Office file is the infection source.

  • The simulation starts with opening a Microsoft Office file. Immediately, WINWORD.EXE is executed with enable macros.
  • Then, through the exploitation of the CVE-2017-11882 vulnerability, Microsoft Office Equation Editor proceeds to download a malicious executable file;
  • Finally, a malicious executable file runs itself and then proceeds to steal the personal data and connect to the C&C server.

process tree of a lokibot stealer execution Figure 2: Illustrates the execution processes of LokiBot as shown by ANY.RUN simulation

a text report of a lokibot analysis Figure 3: A text report created by ANY.RUN

The virus generates multiple artifacts during its execution process. Particularly, four types of files can be simultaneously stored in the secret %APPDATA% directory at any point in time. Those files can have ".exe," ".lck," ".hdb" or ".kdb." extensions, and each file type is used for a specific purpose:

  • .exe files contain an executable copy of the trojan that triggers when a user logs into an account,
  • .lck files are generated to prevent resource conflicts when either Windows Credentials or Keylogging are decrypted,
  • .hdb files are used to store the hashes of all data samples already transmitted to the C&C server
  • .kdb files are in turn used to hold information about the data that is yet to be sent to the server

Based on the analysis, the keylogger uses the following algorithm to name the files:

  1. First, LokiBot takes the value of MachineGuid from the registry branch HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Cryptography . In the case of our simulation, it was set to dc5131b5-5fbc-4f85-b1ed-28d4392080ca.

lokibot mutex creation GUID registry

  1. Then, the virus uses the MD5 algorithm to calculate the hash sum of the MachineGuid, which in our case ended up being c83ba0aa282a966263dda560052b3caf.

lokibot mutex creation md5

  1. Finally, characters from the 8th to the 13th of the resulting hash amount are used as the subdirectory's name, and the characters from the 13th to the 18th are used as the name of the files.

lokibot mutex creation

LokiBot communication with C&C

To communicate with the C&C server, the patched version of the virus, which is also the most widely spread strain, sends a "ckav.ru" string. Interestingly, the sent data is also is a substring of "fuckav.ru."

How to detect LokiBot malware using ANY.RUN?

Among other things, you can detect whether it is LokiBot in front of you or not by looking inside sending packets - there's always text "ckav.ru" inside them. Just click on the sent packet in the "HTTP REQUESTS" tab and take a look inside a packet.

lokibot network stream Figure 4: Lokibot network stream

Conclusion

Lastly, since the first version of the malware was leaked and cloned, eventually becoming available for a significantly lower price than the original, LokiBot spyware became a widely spread malware that continues to appear in several mail-spam campaigns. In fact, the virus has become so popular that its set-up explanation videos on stealing credentials are publically available on YouTube.

Fortunately, modern malware hunting tools like ANY.RUN provides the ability to examine the malware behavior in detail and establish solid protection against the hazard.

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