Malware targeting AutoCAD files could be sign of industrial espionage
- 22 June, 2012 15:28
Malware written to steal design files made by architects and engineers indicates there’s likely been an industrial cyber-espionage effort underway, says ESET, which discovered malware that steals AutoCAD-based files earlier this year.
SLIDESHOW: Worst data breaches of 2012 – so far
ESET malware researcher Pierre-Marc Bureau says the firm captured samples that show the malware, written in the LISP programming language, is “designed to steal sensitive information, such as blueprints” made using AutoCAD software from AutoDesk. Although Peru is where ESET has initially seen this design-stealing malware turn up the most, it’s a global phenomenon, Bureau says. Analysis indicates the malware is sending stolen AutoCAD files to China.
Although ESET captured samples of the computer-aided design-malware back in February, a spike in activity observed around the malware compelled the firm to go back to do more analysis on it. It was learned that the malware was stealing files and mailing them off to what appeared to be a service provider in China. Bureau says ESET contacted the Chinese service provider, Tencent, to shut down the malware’s point of delivery for stolen files, and shared information it gathered with AutoDesk. Anti-virus products that identify the malware would also protect against infections.
Infections are occurring through compromised AutoCAD files, Bureau says. “If you’re exchanging documents with another company, you could get infected.” He says this appears to be a targeted espionage case, perhaps where someone wants to know about what a competitor is doing in a bidding situation, but the malware does seem to be spreading.
Ellen Messmer is senior editor at Network World, an IDG publication and website, where she covers news and technology trends related to information security.
Read more about wide area network in Network World's Wide Area Network section.
Join the CIO Australia group on LinkedIn. The group is open to CIOs, IT Directors, COOs, CTOs and senior IT managers.
- Mobility Apps: What every developer should know
- Definitive Guide to Next-Generation Threat Protection
- How Endpoint Protection and Windows® 8 Change Everything
- Deploying Oracle Maximum Availability Architecture with Exadata Database Machine
- Benefits of Deploying Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 on Dell Compellent with Data Progression
Why change management doesn’t work
Larry Page wants to see your medical records
Dual-Persona Smartphones Not a BYOD Panacea
After two-year hiatus, EFF accepts bitcoin donations again
CIOs struggle to deliver timely mobile business apps: survey
Bring Your Own Device FAQs
This report covers the frequently asked questions associated with the implications of BYOD devices in the workplace. Any solution in this space needs to be built on simplicity, scalability and security. Click to find out how to address the IT security challenges.
Clearing the Clouds for Midmarket Businesses
Cloud computing promises to help midmarket companies reduce cost and complexity in the IT equation – and gain the flexibility and agility they need to thrive. Yet charting a clear course to the cloud isn’t always easy. In this paper, we aim to clear the clouds. We examine different cloud computing models, discuss the types of requirements that each can best address, and consider what midmarket businesses should look for in a cloud solutions provider.
Managing the Rapid Rise in Database Growth: 2011 IOUG Survey on Database Manageability
As the era of “Big Data” marches on unabated, data is coming from an ever wider range of sources, including transactional systems, mobile devices, sensors, streaming media, and social networks. Businesses are looking for innovative ways to better leverage terabytes—and for some, petabytes—of information. Read more.