Η Microsoft products made a court decision this month that allows company to shut down six domains used in phishing operations against Office 365 users. Lots of phishing emails included issues related to him COVID-19.
According to court documents, Microsoft has targeted a phishing team that has been attacking company customers since December 2019.
The phishing emails were designed to make them look authentic. They were supposed to come from colleagues employees or by a trusted business partner. This particular one phishing business was unique, because the invaders did not try to redirect them users on phishing sites that mimicked its login page Office 365.
Instead, the hackers had embedded an Office document. When users tried to open the file, were called upon to install a malicious application Office 365 third party, created by the attackers.
Installing the app allowed hackers to obtain it complete access to the victim's Office 365 account, in its settings, in the user's files, in the content of their emails, in the contact lists, in the notes and in others.
Microsoft said that with this malicious Office 365 application, the hackers gained full access to the accounts, without the need to collect passwords.
Some of these phishing attacks succeeded for three reasons. The first reason is that the app was designed to look like it was created by Microsoft and was secure.
The second reason has to do with the Office 365 environment itself. Users are accustomed to downloading applications third parties. Therefore, they did not realize that something strange was happening.
Finally, hackers used a clever technique. Initially, users were on the official Microsoft login page. The app appeared after authentication, giving users the impression that they were using a Microsoft-controlled application.
In agreement with the court, Microsoft targeted six domains in which hackers hosted malicious Office 365 applications. The 6 domains are listed below:
Microsoft believes that at least two people are behind this phishing operation. The company noted that the initials attacks used business-related issues, but quickly switched to COVID-19 email.
Their ultimate goal hackers was the realization BEC of attacks
Tom Burt, a senior Microsoft executive, said the villains applications used to obtain information that would allow hackers to continue with BEC (business email compromise) attacks.
In these attacks, the attackers send emails, present themselves as employees, top executives or trusted business associates and ask the victims to make transactions that result in the bank accounts of the intruder.