RIG 3.0 Exploit Kit Infects Millions, Most Notably Adobe Flash Users
Trustwave researchers infiltrate the exploit kit's infrastructure and find a high success rate for Flash exploits.The RIG exploit kit is undergoing an evolution to version 3.0 as malware authors seek to infect an increasing volume of victims. A research team at security vendor Trustwave has managed to infiltrate the RIG ecosystem, which is made up of a command and control system as well as third parties that use RIG as a service to exploit users. Arseny Levin, lead security researcher at Trustwave, said the RIG 2.0 code was leaked in February by a disgruntled RIG reseller. With the RIG 3.0 update, the exploit kit authors are now abandoning the reseller model and selling the service directly. Levin said that Trustwave based its initial research into RIG 3.0 on the source code that was leaked with RIG 2.0 and then escalated from there, eventually gaining access to the RIG back-end servers. "We had access to the RIG administration panel and then got access to their database," Levin told eWEEK. "They did a good job of securing their source code, so it was a really complex task to get access, which required a team effort from Trustwave researchers." Levin noted that exploit URLs delivered by RIG 3.0 are now more difficult to detect, thanks to a new dynamic model of URLs. In the past, URLs used by RIG were relatively static, which meant that signature-based detection was possible in security platforms, he said. The way the RIG 3.0 exploit kit works is largely by way of malvertising links, according to Levin. Malvertising is a form of malicious online advertising where the destination landing page of the ad leads to some form of malware exploit delivery. He said that RIG 3.0 lands as a low-cost advertising network bid, making use of low frequency keywords in an effort to help avoid detection.
Overall, the Trustwave research team has seen a high degree of success so far from the RIG 3.0 exploit kit.