The Russian APT group Sednit (aka Fancy Bear and APT28) is strongly suspected to be the culprit behind a new rootkit malware program that can survive on an infected machine even if the operating system is reinstalled and the hard drive is replaced.

ESET researchers who discovered the rootkit say this is the first time researchers successfully detected an in-the-wild UEFI rootkit that exploits the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface specification that defines a software interface between an operating system and platform firmware. By penetrating this deeply into the computer, the attackers hope to achieve very strong persistence while remaining unnoticed for long periods of time.

Dubbed LoJax, the rootkit has already been used to silently target government organizations in the Balkans, as well as Eastern and Central Europe, ESET has reported in both a blog post and a white paper that was presented today at an industry conference.

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