Are you using a premise Exchange Server at the office?

Microsoft Exchange servers are once more in the crosshairs of hackers around the world.  Most recently, hacking groups have been specifically targeting them to deploy BlackCat ransomware.

As is common among ransomware attacks, the hackers here first rifle through an infected network, looking for login credentials, proprietary information, and other sensitive files that they can copy and exfiltrate.  They exploit a target organization in two ways. They ultimately encrypt a target's files and demand payment to unlock them and then ransom the copied files for additional payment.

This should be regarded as a serious threat.  Although Microsoft tries gamely to keep Exchange servers secure, there are several vulnerabilities in the code. An organization that doesn't apply security patches as soon as they are available is incredibly vulnerable to these attacks.

It's a sufficiently significant threat that in April, the FBI issued a Flash Alert about BlackCat, warning that the recent surge in attacks have compromised more than sixty different organizations worldwide.

 

The FBI alert reads

"Many of the developers and money launderers for BlackCat/ALPHV are linked to Darkside/Blackmatter, indicating they have extensive networks and experience with ransomware operations."

The FBI has also requested the assistance of any organization that becomes compromised so they can track the attacks back to their source and take action against them.

 

Again, the FBI Flash Alert reads

"IP logs showing callbacks from foreign IP addresses, Bitcoin or Monero addresses and transaction IDs, communications with the threat actors, the decryptor file, and/or a benign sample of an encrypted file."

 

My perspective

Here's hoping your organization doesn't wind up in the crosshairs of hackers. If you happen to, give the FBI a hand so they can shut these miscreants down.

 

It's the Bat-Signal!

 


By Denis Wilson

Cybersecurity Expert, Small Business Technology Consultant, Managed Services Provider, Managed IT Support

Thanks for reading this post. I always take into mind that your time and attention are precious. And these posts need to be timely, to the point, and short.

For more tips on thriving with small business technology, check out the other blog posts at DWPIA Blogs. You can also find me on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter

I am also a published author and speaker on cloud computing, work-at-home, and cybersecurity. I work extensively with business and professional associations to provide free small business technology education programs.

 

Contact me if you would like me to speak to your association