Nemty

51
Global rank
46
Month rank
50
Week rank
375
IOCs

Nemty is ransomware with an unusually complex encryption algorithm. This malware encrypts user files and demands money so that they can be unlocked again. It may be connected to other famous ransomware, but we don’t know for sure.

Ransomware
Type
ex-USSR territory
Origin
1 August, 2019
First seen
22 May, 2023
Last seen
Also known as
NEMTY PROJECT

How to analyze Nemty with ANY.RUN

Ransomware
Type
ex-USSR territory
Origin
1 August, 2019
First seen
22 May, 2023
Last seen

IOCs

IP addresses
64.185.227.155
173.231.16.76
3.220.57.224
52.20.78.240
54.91.59.199
3.232.242.170
104.26.5.15
104.26.4.15
172.67.75.166
50.19.104.221
50.16.235.219
50.16.246.238
23.21.168.151
23.21.136.132
54.235.176.177
50.19.252.36
54.225.169.250
54.225.66.103
23.21.42.25
54.225.215.180
Hashes
be22645c61949ad6a077373a7d6cd85e3fae44315632f161adc4c99d5a8e6844
664b45ba61cf7e17012b22374c0c2a52a2e661e9c8c1c40982137c910095179a
c41f14cf5a0c8d407b70cf07f552a5ba26db3b23bfdbfae7b24e7ff8de7ec1a7
e410854d9c8afe6e691c0ae638dfd04d792c3745dbb9e335f6f949e7a6b298d8
31ee05823a66851cf6965f32d02e767206785d0bf0c9fa65e7dcf1ffed32c18e
74e114fbc9a00c693041a4cc0a61fc8217e86984668c65326f935fe0fd762637
a9f6d5ad40d5b073be92fc46666ce1f96e30c50494a018d472cfee56ff2b8c65
d1eb42617926769b80b10d8a7120c6c7d7f445e40854eebb93d65a5877a9ae1d
82787abecca5253fe7ea96c96ef3e8862eacf979bf8c86781c46ec7b6a5009d0
ddadfcc43e4576de65f5844396a08fec47410663a6b6921991206b7a0df32ada
1d828a6c85bd5896ea27eeb17483dfe3bef81e0bf31521c91bcdf2559a03da1f
17864c4e21c0ebaf30cca1f35d67f46d3c3c33a5b8ea87d4c331e9d86d805965
a5590a987d125a8ca6629e33e3ff1f3eb7d5f41f62133025d3476e1a6e4c6130
3d852ca618763ced2e280f0c0079e804935b70dcd4adc3912c2e2b3965e196c4
aa3d94c1f2e95f0d334d99b7b2309c814dc3e26a6e60875750809fda115d0bed
dd228f63f0ef02749759ef6d75f9f84d5ba8b0787dadef0d41b390176ea5d6a1
d421d9b0cc9ce69fc4dea1d4bd230b666b15868e4778d227ead38b7572463253
455681168925ee1c2150eb702ae42b8fc6761c16663116fc1f3e8acee09c81ee
6a07996bc77bc6fe54acc8fd8d5551a00deaea3cc48f097f18955b06098c4bd3
cb30eb1fd6d68346bcfc9bdf8b07b0724e592c7aa226ef2d860a11e6e1053b88
Domains
majul.com
qxq.ddns.net
www.credly.com
api.db-ip.com
isns.net
krupskaya.com
m-onetrading-jp.com
thuocnam.tk
api4.ipify.org
sleepy-roundworm-iu5bgvr0ekbs8b10t1vy0l2j.herokudns.com
booking.msg.bluhotels.com
booking.msg.bluhotels.com
api64.ipify.org
i.kissmetrics.com
go.techtarget.com
source.unsplash.com
www.belgemodul.com
test.pensionsdashboardservice.org.uk
cdn.db-ip.com
api-mg2.db-ip.com
Last Seen at

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Nemty, also known as NEMTY PROJECT is a ransomware-type of malware. A virus that puts encryption on all files that are stored on infected machines and only allows to restore them if victims pay a certain ransom amount.

Nemty has surfaced not so long ago. It was first observed in the wild in August 2019. Due to some similarities in the code and behavior, researchers think that Nemty might be related to GandCrab and Sodinokibi, though direct correlation hasn’t been proved. In any case, it is safe to assume that this is very advanced malware.

Additionally, the malware’s code apparently includes an affiliate ID which may indicate that Nemty is available as a Ransomware as a Service. If this information is correct Nemty has the potential to become a very widespread malware due to its easy availability.

General description of Nemty ransomware

Nemty ransomware is being actively upgraded by its creators. In fact, several versions of the virus have already been released and nothing suggests that this development should stop anytime soon.

Among other upgrades, threat actors employed a very strong encryption algorithm. It is actually so strong that no malware before Nemty has used anything similar. The RSA-8192 used here is 8192-bit encryption which is considered to be an overkill for use in malware. Even though this encryption protocol makes data decryption more difficult it also presents its own complications. For example, it causes longer encryption and key generation times and only encrypts 1024 bytes at a time.

Despite this, researchers have been able to create decryptors that work with versions 1.4, 1.5 and 1.6 of the malware, for example, the Avast Nemty decryption tool. This means that victims that have been attacked by the version of the malware mentioned above can restore their information without having to pay the ransom to the attackers.

Without the decryptors like the Avast Nemty tool, victims would have to pay a ransom of about $1000 equivalent in Bitcoin to the attackers. The ransom can be paid through a payment portal that is hosted using the TOR network. And if not paid on time, the amount is doubled to a $2000 equivalent.

We don’t know for sure who the people behind Nemty are. The malware has code that checks if the victim is from one of the following countries: Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, or Ukraine.

However, victims from the countries mentioned above can still get attacked by the ransomware. This is strange since usually, viruses that check for the origins of victims terminate execution to avoid getting attention from local law enforcement structures.

In the case of Nemty, users from all over the world are in danger of being infected.

However, there are other interesting oddities in the code that point to a ex-USSR origin of the virus. The code contains a link to a similar picture that was linked in GandCrab’s code. Except, this time it contains on an overlay of the Russian president’s portrait. There are other weird things to be found in the code of this malware. For example, if you dig deep enough you will find a direct message to cybersecurity professionals telling them to, well, “mind their own business” in a less polite form.

More evidence suggesting the x-USSR origin of the malware creators is that the payment page is in the Russian language. Maybe the creators are in fact Russian or they are trying to plant a false lead and mislead researchers.

Malware analysis of Nemty ransomware

A video recorded in the ANY.RUN malware hunting service allows us to take a look at the execution of this malware in action.

nemty's ransom note

Figure 1: Nemty's ransom note

text report of the Nemty ransomware analysis

Figure 2: Shows a customizable text report generated by the ANY.RUN malware analysis service which allows diving deeper into the details of the Nemty execution process.

Nemty execution process

The execution process of the Nemty ransomware is relatively typical for this type of malware. After the executable file makes its way into an infected system and runs, the main malicious activity begins. Like many other ransomware families, Nemty deletes shadow copy files. It also stops and kills processes from the hardcoded list. The malware creates a text file with a ransom note in every folder with encrypted files.

The interesting thing is that Nemty, as well as Sodinokibi, creates a registry key in which it stores values such as a public key and a file extension for encrypted files.

Nemty Distribution

Initially, Nemty was using RIG and Radio EK exploit kits for distribution purposes. In addition to that, malware authors employed spam email campaigns to distribute the virus primarily in Korea and China. These two countries are where the bulk of all Nemty infections is happening.

However, with the newer versions of the malware coming out, threat actors started using new distribution methods. Possibly they were trying to expand the reach of the malware and gain the ability to infect more victims.

One of such methods is a fake PayPal website that promises to save money with an unusually high cashback. The website is designed to look identical to the genuine PayPal and prompts users to download a file called “cashback.exe”. Although unsuspecting victims might think that they are downloading a PayPal app, in reality, they are installing and executing the Nemty ransomware.

In addition, later versions of the malware are delivered using the Trik botnet. Apparently, the authors of Nemty have partnered up with people behind Trik to increase their range.

How to detect Nemty using ANY.RUN?

To determine whether the sample under review is Nemty or not, you can take a look at the changes that it made in the registry. To do so, open "Advanced details of process" of the malicious process and look at the "Registry changes" tab in the "Events" section. If a process has created values with the names "cfg", "pbkey" or "fid" into the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\NEMTY, you can be sure that the given sample is Nemty.

changes in registry made by nemty ransomware

Figure 3: Changes in registry made by Nemty ransomware

Conclusion

The constant evolution of distribution methods, as well as regular updates, prove that this malware is at a stage of active development. First seen in 2019, Nemty is a young threat that already shows signs of sophisticated malware.

Coupled with the potential use of the Ransomware as a Service business model that makes this malware available to many threat actors around the globe, these factors demand that this threat is not taken lightly.

One of the primary dangers of this Ransomware lies in the delivery techniques chosen by the attackers. While mail spam helps to reach millions of potential victims easily, heavy use of exploit kits allows attackers to control every step of the infection.

Thus, it is especially important that security researchers can evaluate this ransomware and continue developing countermeasures and encryptors, like the Avast Nemty. One more tool that can help in this pursuit is the ANY.RUN malware hunting service that will allow studying samples of Nemty in a controlled and safe environment.

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