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Microsoft's IIS server compromised again

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June 10, 2010

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Over the past few days, and due to a security flaw in Microsoft's IIS (Internet Information Server), more than 100,000 Web pages belonging to newspaper sites, police departments and other large organizations have been hit by an attack that redirected site visitors to rogue website that attempted to install viruses and other malicious software on their computers.

The large scheme appears to have affected websites running a banner-ads module on top of IIS serverd using Microsoft's ASP.net technology, said David Dede, head of malware research at Sucuri, a website monitoring company in the U.K.

So far, IntlJobs.org, the Wall Street Journal's wsj.com and tomtom.com have all been attacked, in addition to The Jerusalem Post and the police department website for the U.K. county of Strathclyde.

The various websites were infected using SQL injection exploits, which allow attackers to tamper with a server's database by typing commands into search boxes and other user-input fields.

The hackers used the exploit to plant iFrames in the compromised sites that redirected visitors to robint.us, a rogue website that tries to install malware on unsuspecting users' computers.

Malicious javascript on that site attempted to infect end users with malware dubbed Mal/Behav-290 according to anti-virus firm Sophos.

Finally, the bogus site robint.us has been disabled, thanks to a sink-holing effort carried out by volunteer security firm ShadowServer Foundation. The action will allow ShadowServer researchers to get a complete list of compromised websites and to gather additional information about how the attack was carried out in the first place, spokesman André Di Mino said in an email.

Di Mino added that the complete details of this attack would be published soon.

Various Google searches performed on June 8th indicated more than 100,000 pages were infected on that day, but that number had shrunk to about 7,723 when this article was published.

The so-called SQL injection attacks came from Chinese IP address 121.14.154.69, Di Mino added. Robint.us was registered to a Dongguan Wanjian of Dongguan, China, according to Internet whois records.

Di Mino said he is still trying to determine the source of the attack module that is being compromised in the massive hack attack. Cisco Systems' ScanSafe had additional details about the attacks on its site yesterday.

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Source: The ShadowServer Foundation.

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