A pair of Israeli financial technology companies were recently the target of a malware campaign featuring an updated version of the rarely seen Cardinal remote access trojan, researchers from Palo Alto Networks' Unit 42 team are reporting.

And in a possibly related incident, one of the two unnamed companies was similarly attacked with EVILNUM, a JavaScript-based first-stage malware that Unit 42 believes is also aimed at the fintech industry.

Unit 42 originally discovered Cardinal RAT in 2017, at the time tying it to a downloader called Carp that leverages macros in Microsoft Excel documents to deploy the remote access trojan. The RAT had already been active for two years in 2017, managing to stay under the radar with its low-volume campaigns.

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