Cactus attacks Asbury Automotive Group

Incident Date:

January 12, 2024

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Cactus attacks Asbury Automotive Group


Asbury Automotive Group




Duluth, USA

Georgia, USA

First Reported

January 12, 2024

Cactus Ransomware Group's Attack on Asbury Automotive Group

Cactus ransomware group claimed an attack against Asbury Automotive Group. The group has exfiltrated 62 GB of data, including certificates, passport applications, and Personally Identifiable Information (PII) documents. Asbury Automotive Group is a company based in Atlanta that operates auto dealerships in various parts of the United States.

Cactus's Operation Tactics

Cactus has been in operation since at least March 2023. Cactus has been observed employing known vulnerabilities within VPN appliances to initiate an initial breach. Once gaining entry to the network, Cactus operators engage in activities such as enumerating local and network user accounts and identifying accessible endpoints. They then proceed to generate new user accounts and utilize custom scripts for the automated rollout and activation of the ransomware encryptor through scheduled tasks.

Unique Characteristics of the Ransomware

It is noteworthy that the ransomware encryptor utilized by Cactus exhibits a unique characteristic – it necessitates a decryption key for the execution of the binary, likely implemented to evade detection by anti-virus software. This decryption key is concealed within a file containing random text named ntuser.dat, which is loaded through a scheduled task.

Recent Ransomware Attacks

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