The Cl0p gang claims to have breached more than150 organizations, having added about 30 more victims in one day – including international conglomerate Virgin Group, Toronto Municipality, Mexican airline Volaris, US TV network Gray Television, and more.
“At the time of writing, the gang’s leak site had no information about what type of data was taken and when. Cybernews has reached out to Virgin Group for comment, but we did not immediately receive a response,” Cybernews reports.
Cl0p is leveraging a vulnerability in the popular file sharing application GoAnywhere to carry out this massive attack campaign. The tool’s producer Fortra had released a patch for the bug back on February 7, but the intrusions may have already occurred, and likely have already exfiltrated sensitive data from the targets, but many organizations are still exposed.
Takeaway: The Cl0p ransomware gang has reportedly added 30 more organizations to its leaks website in the last 24 hours - including transportation giant Virgin Group. These organizations are likely victims of Cl0p's mass exploitation of the GoAnywhere vulnerability, bringing the total number of known Cl0p targets in this campaign closer to 200, and there are likely more.
This wave of Cl0p attacks is immensely concerning for several reasons, the first being around how surprisingly successful they have been in exploiting a known vulnerability for which there is a patch already available. Patching systems can be a complex process for some organizations. In order to avoid breaking critical business systems, patches often need to be applied in dev environments and tested prior to being put into production environments. Even then, some issues prevent patching due to legacy systems/software or internal (home-brewed) scripts/applications that will break if the patch is applied haphazardly. Thus, there can be months or more of work to do before some vulnerabilities can be mitigated, leaving the organization exposed.
Another concern is that this spate of attacks is likely evidence that ransomware operators like Cl0p are leveraging automation to identify exposed organizations who may not have had the time or resources to patch against known vulnerabilities. If Cl0p is claiming they have compromised more than 150 organizations so far in this campaign, it is likely they have already successfully exfiltrated large amounts of confidential information from the victims. Just as important is the fact that there could be dozens of other targets who are at this very moment experiencing data loss as a precursor to the delivery of a ransomware payload, and they don't even realize they are in the midst of a major attack.
Mulli-stage ransomware attacks have a long tail, as they typically involve weeks or even months of effort by attackers to infiltrate as much of the target network and exfiltrate as much data as possible before encrypting systems so they can demand higher ransom payouts. There are basically two things organizations need to do to prepare for ransomware attacks: first ensure the organization is prepared to detect and prevent the attack at multiple points in the attack sequence: at initial ingress, at lateral movement, when they establish C2, at data exfiltration and so on. The second is to assure that in the event of a successful ransomware attack, the organization is resilient. The goal is always to minimize the duration, spread and overall impact of the attack and get back to normal as quickly as possible. Both strategies need to be in play simultaneously.
These ransomware campaigns are multi-stage attacks, so we have multiple opportunities to detect and stop them. Organizations need both a robust prevention strategy as well as an agile resilience strategy. This approach includes deploying endpoint protection solutions, good patch management, offsite data backups, good access controls, employee awareness training, and regular procedure and resilience testing for a ransomware readiness plans to be successful.
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The Cl0p ransomware gang has reportedly added 30 more organizations to its leaks website in the last 24 hours including transportation giant Virgin Group...
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