Jun 25, 2021

‘Oddball’ Malware Blocks Access to Pirated Software

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, finance

Rather than steal credentials or hold data for ransom, a recent campaign observed by Sophos prevents people from visiting sites that offer illegal downloads.

The objective of most malware is some kind of gain — financial or otherwise — for the attackers who use it. However, researchers recently observed a unique malware with a single intent: Blocking the infected computers from visiting websites dedicated to software piracy.

The malware (which SophosLabs principal researcher Andrew Brandt called “one of the strangest cases I’ve seen in a while”) works by modifying the HOSTS file on the infected system, in a “a crude but effective method to prevent a computer from being able to reach a web address,” he wrote in a report published Thursday.

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