Bulletin

An indispensable source of reference for anyone concerned with computer security, the Bulletin is the forum through which leading security researchers publish the latest security research and information in a bid to share knowledge with the security community. Publications cover the latest threats, new developments and techniques in the security landscape, opinions from respected members of the industry, and more. The Bulletin archives offer informative articles going back to 1989. Our editorial team is happy to hear from anyone interested in submitting a paper for publication.

VB2019 paper: Never before had Stierlitz been so close to failure (or: what is a Soviet super-spy doing in a popular bundleware for Mac?)

Sergei Shevchenko (Sophos)

This paper looks at a popular macOS bundleware that employs some surprising techniques. Not only does it employ anti-debugging, strings/API encryption and Mach-O runtime decompression techniques, its developers went as far as embedding a full…

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VB2019 paper: Exploring the Chinese DDoS threat landscape

Nacho Sanmillan (Intezer)

Chinese threat actors have been shown to be predominant in the DDoS ecosystem, there being a high volume of known cross-platform DDoS botnets with alleged Chinese origin operating in Linux as well as Windows systems and exercising long-term…

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VB2019 paper: Absolutely routed!! Why routers are the new bullseye in cyber attacks

Anurag Shandilya (K7 Computing)

Routers are ubiquitous and highly vulnerable to attack. Despite being the central nervous system of any network, routers are disregarded when it comes to security, as can be proven by the fact that, although vulnerabilities in routers are identified…

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VB2019 paper: Operation Soft Cell – a worldwide campaign against telecommunication providers

Mor Levi (Cybereason)
Amit Serper (Cybereason)
Assaf Dahan (Cybereason)

In this paper researchers from Cybereason look at Operation Soft Cell – a worldwide campaign against telecommunication providers.

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VB2019 paper: A study of Machete cyber espionage operations in Latin America

Veronica Valeros (Czech Technical University in Prague)
Maria Rigaki (Czech Technical University in Prague)
Kamila Babayeva (Czech Technical University in Prague)
Sebastian García (Czech Technical University in Prague)

Reports on cyber espionage operations have been on the rise in the last decade. However, operations in Latin America are heavily under-researched and potentially underestimated. This paper analyses and dissects a cyber espionage tool known as…

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VB2019 paper: The push from fiction for increased surveillance, and its impact on privacy

Miriam Cihodariu (Heimdal Security)
Andrei Bogdan Brad (Code4Romania)

Privacy is a major source of concern for people living in the digital age. Whether they are right in their suspicions or not, people have even started questioning whether their smart light bulbs are spying on them. The only certainty we have in all…

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VB2019 paper: Oops! It happened again!

Righard Zwienenberg (ESET)
Eddy Willems (G DATA Software)

This paper will take you on a scenic tour spanning three decades of malware, three decades of digital ecosystems and three decades of history repeating itself. When will we ever learn?

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VB2019 paper: A vine climbing over the Great Firewall: a long‑term attack against China

Lion Gu (Qi An Xin Threat Intelligence Center)
Bowen Pan (Qi An Xin Threat Intelligence Center)

This paper discloses details of a little-known APT group, PoisonVine, and its long history of cyberespionage activities lasting 11 years. The group is keen on Chinese entities and aims to harvest political and military intelligence. The paper…

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VB2019 paper: Fantastic Information and Where to Find it: A guidebook to open-source OT reconnaissance

Daniel Kapellmann Zafra (FireEye)

This paper explains some of the main motivations that drive threat actors to perform reconnaissance on industrial networks. It then illustrates some of the tactics that have been used by threat actors to extract OT documentation from corporate IT…

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VB2019 paper: Different ways to cook a crab: GandCrab Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) analysed in depth

Alexandre Mundo Alguacil (McAfee)
John Fokker (McAfee)

This paper examines the GandCrab ransomware, the biggest Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) threat seen in 2018 and the first half of 2019. Through technical analysis, several mistakes and indicators were discovered in the malware. Armed with these…

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