A recently uncovered advanced persistent threat (ATP) has been targeting businesses and political groups in Asia.
Researchers with Trend Micro said that the malware, known as 'Luckycat' was primarily focused on infecting systems in Tibet and Japan. The campaign has been traced in part to systems based in China.
The company said that Luckycat had sought to infect systems and remain in operation over a long period of time. Rather than simply copy a system and upload information, researchers believe that Luckycat is intended to covertly monitor activity over an extended time frame.
Researchers suggest that each of the 233 machines infected by the campaign had been selected.
Attackers used a series of Word documents specially crafted for the locality and interests of the various targets. The files then attempted to run exploit code and install the malicious payload.
Additionally, researchers have found that malware had been tested and crafted for individual uses.
"Each malware attack involves a unique campaign code that can be used to track which victims were compromised by which malware attack," Trend said in its report.
"This illustrates that the attackers are both very aggressive and continually target their intended victims."
Luckycat is the latest in what has been a growing crop of APTs uncovered in recent years. While high-profile attacks such as Operation Aurora and Shady Rat have garnered headlines, researchers note that smaller APTs are also growing in popularity.
"Targeted attacks have been extremely successful, making the scope of the problem truly global," the company noted in the report.
"These have been affecting governments, militaries, defense industries, high-technology companies, intergovernmental organizations, nongovernmental organisations (NGOs), media organisations, academic institutions, and activists worldwide."
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