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Medusa Ransomware

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Global rank
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Month rank
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Week rank
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IOCs

Medusa is a ransomware malware family targeting businesses and institutions. Medusa encrypts crucial data, rendering it inaccessible, and attempts to pressure users to pay to regain control of their information. The group behind this malicious software hosts a TOR website where it shares the list of the organizations whose infrastructure has been compromised. This malware utilizes various tactics, including exploiting vulnerabilities and employs a unique file extension (".MEDUSA") to mark encrypted files.

Ransomware
Type
Unknown
Origin
1 June, 2021
First seen
16 July, 2024
Last seen

How to analyze Medusa Ransomware with ANY.RUN

Type
Unknown
Origin
1 June, 2021
First seen
16 July, 2024
Last seen

IOCs

Hashes
d595339cbbf415eca195eb3a0d9a8b6c9ff82a0cf36e4e867f5cef24503bb532
dde3c98b6a370fb8d1785f3134a76cb465cd663db20dffe011da57a4de37aa95
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54b8ca90cd5c6b8053a612d2e8d99bf05f427b36e7fccc0f63427e1f386db186
104ffe0cc10413b8c3dd04fdc921f07c3cc55efba9a63ccdccf45e4012151c5f
d90573cdf776f60a91dc57e8c77dd61adbdaaf205de29faf26afd138c520f487
b477676fa9bc4972b2448e27a2b4074edc392227da5d259e87faf2eb1c8e19c7
ba87d97a4c7dec4e2eef997190f5f875c8564395bf3c95bd95055f447c495387
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51b8a283f87a95edb5e98125e5730bcf843fc7ec8fcdc175c8dc0ba3032e8a51
c2a78b419e7d33de9e7418306f30623970a02d4d41c562e99581d0dc3e0bdb08
fc0f65213e7ad5960378433efc55642c116c750e10cb881ed7297f361b6be7dd
3d39103d462799b55ee3248e491bf09633f2a5328986fda9799abac29d2c5753
465ab4311a7db9f0bc10921cf6a0da7a746c4023dd78fdcec1c253eee69e5b9d
19fdd96ebe242bb5d1b91df5fbcf45e75881416d0c20db5375430694031f0153
4937c5750efce178e2abaa5107fab12122e444ff85dba666cb33003c15829695
1bc0575b3fc6486cb2510dac1ac6ae4889b94a955d3eade53d3ba3a92d133281
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4cf090e3ae23ea6cbe76df697bf7143bcc95acfc1521fbe5af77cb5033fae87a
Domains
asfsafsakjfkjsa.xyz
umxkexskgtctvws.cn
sock.asfsafsakjfkjsa.xyz
ueihtnoujbedjiu.ru
fpuacswjcgpcxoe.ru
Last Seen at

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What is malware: Medusa Ransomware?

Medusa Ransomware is a type of malicious software employed by cybercriminals for extortion purposes. This tool is used in offensive campaigns that involve the encryption of critical data belonging to organizations, followed by a ransom demand for its decryption.

Medusa Ransomware first emerged in June 2021 and has since targeted various industries, including the education sector. In 2023 alone, it is reported to have affected over 70 organizations globally, operating under the Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) business model.

The cybercriminals behind Medusa Ransomware maintain a dedicated TOR website where they publish information about their victims, accompanied by a countdown clock indicating the time left before the data is released.

To prevent data leaks, victims are typically presented with three options. They can extend the time limit, pay a fee to have their stolen data deleted, or opt to download the compromised data, essentially buying back their own information.

One notable incident involving Medusa Ransomware took place in 2023. The group successfully infiltrated Toyota's European division, demanding a substantial ransom of $8 million. When negotiations broke down, the attackers proceeded to release the stolen data on their dark web portal.

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Medusa ransomware malicious software technical details

One of the primary signs of a Medusa ransomware attack is the addition of the ".MEDUSA" extension to encrypted files. However, this malware has been known to use various other extensions such as .1btc, .mylock, and .key1.

The variety of file extensions linked to Medusa ransomware indicates the existence of several versions. The ransom notes can appear in either TXT or HTML format (in newer versions). The note contains a unique 32-character hash value used for communication with the attackers.

For the encryption process, Medusa utilizes the strong AES256 algorithm, making decryption without the proper key extremely challenging. Additionally, the key used for encryption is itself encrypted using an RSA public key, further securing the encrypted data.

Medusa often infiltrates systems by exploiting existing vulnerabilities. In the past, it has targeted weaknesses such as CVE-2022-2294 and CVE-2022-21999 to deliver its payload.

To maintain persistence on the infected system, Medusa copies an executable file, usually named "svhost.exe" or "svhostt.exe", to a specific directory within the user's profile. This executable is then scheduled to run at regular intervals, ensuring the continued operation of the ransomware.

Medusa targets and terminates processes associated with security software. By doing so, it aims to disable potential detection and data recovery mechanisms.

Another strategy employed by Medusa is the deletion of Volume Shadow Copies, a Windows feature that creates backups of files at specific points in time. By eliminating these copies, Medusa removes a potential recovery method for victims.

Medusa Ransomware execution process

Medusa Ransomware can be analyzed in the ANY.RUN sandbox. To do this, we can upload its sample to the service.

Medusa ransomware typically infiltrates a system through phishing emails or malicious downloads, exploiting vulnerabilities in outdated software or weak security measures. Once executed, it stealthily encrypts files using strong encryption algorithms, rendering them inaccessible to the user. Medusa then displays a ransom note, usually demanding payment in cryptocurrency, in exchange for a decryption key. The ransom note often includes instructions on how to make the payment and how to contact the attackers. Meanwhile, Medusa may also attempt to spread laterally across the network, infecting other connected devices. Finally, the attackers await payment confirmation before providing the decryption key, although there's no guarantee they will uphold their end of the bargain. As a common activity for ransomware, Medusa halts system services and deletes shadow volumes.

Medusa ransom note shown in ANY.RUN Medusa ransom note demonstrated in ANY.RUN

Medusa Ransomware malware distribution methods

Similar to other malware, such as AsyncRAT and Remcos, phishing is one of the primary distribution methods employed by Medusa ransomware operators. Attackers send deceptive emails to potential victims, often disguising themselves as legitimate organizations or individuals. These emails typically contain malicious attachments or links, which, when clicked or downloaded, initiate the ransomware installation process.

Conclusion

Medusa ransomware's ability to compromise sensitive data poses a threat to businesses and individuals. The consequences of a successful attack can be severe, ranging from financial losses due to ransom demands to reputational damage caused by leaked information. Prioritizing preventive measures, such as learning about the malware’s TTPs and collecting its indicators of compromise (IOCs) can prove invaluable for any organization’s security posture. ANY.RUN is an online sandbox that enables users to do just that.

This interactive sandbox environment allows users to safely explore potential malware and quickly receive detailed technical reports. By leveraging this service, users can collect important information for making decisions needed for safeguarding their systems from harm.

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