McAfee researchers announced Thursday that an espionage campaign targeting defense and aerospace contractors using job offers on LinkedIn covered a broader geographic area than previously thought.
The campaign, called Operation North Star, was first reported by McAfee over the summer. The attacks showed similar tactics, techniques and procedures to the North Korean actor Hidden Cobra and targeted South Korean firms. The campaign phished employees by copying job opportunities from legitimate websites and crafting lures that were diligently tailored to the targets.
The new deep-dive from McAfee is based on access to a command and control server used by the campaign. It expands that geographic base to Russia, India, Australia and Israel. It also uncovered a previously unreported second stage implant – "Torisma" – being used in the campaign. But, said McAfee chief scientist Raj Samani, the most interesting new discovery might be the lengths Operation North Star went to protect itself.
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