Trustwave SpiderLabs Uncovers Ov3r_Stealer Malware Spread via Phishing and Facebook Advertising. Learn More

Trustwave SpiderLabs Uncovers Ov3r_Stealer Malware Spread via Phishing and Facebook Advertising. Learn More

Managed Detection & Response

Eliminate active threats with 24/7 threat detection, investigation, and response.

Co-Managed SOC (SIEM)

Maximize your SIEM investment, stop alert fatigue, and enhance your team with hybrid security operations support.

Advisory & Diagnostics

Advance your cybersecurity program and get expert guidance where you need it most.

Penetration Testing

Test your physical locations and IT infrastructure to shore up weaknesses before exploitation.

Database Security

Prevent unauthorized access and exceed compliance requirements.

Email Security

Stop email threats others miss and secure your organization against the #1 ransomware attack vector.

Digital Forensics & Incident Response

Prepare for the inevitable with 24/7 global breach response in-region and available on-site.

Firewall & Technology Management

Mitigate risk of a cyberattack with 24/7 incident and health monitoring and the latest threat intelligence.

Microsoft Exchange Server Attacks
Stay protected against emerging threats
Rapidly Secure New Environments
Security for rapid response situations
Securing the Cloud
Safely navigate and stay protected
Securing the IoT Landscape
Test, monitor and secure network objects
Why Trustwave
About Us
Awards and Accolades
Trustwave SpiderLabs Team
Trustwave Fusion Security Operations Platform
Trustwave Security Colony
Technology Alliance Partners
Key alliances who align and support our ecosystem of security offerings
Trustwave PartnerOne Program
Join forces with Trustwave to protect against the most advance cybersecurity threats
Trustwave Blog

What You Need to Know About Exploit Kits

Exploit kits have become immensely popular in the criminal underground because of their ability to automate the process of distributing malware and infecting users. Most of the attacks that occur on the web these days originate from these malicious toolkits.

And as our SpiderLabs blog and new Trustwave Global Security Report Online revealed this week, the Magnitude Exploit Kit is quickly becoming the granddaddy of them all - underscoring the growing sophistication of crimeware and how mature the cybercrime profession has become.

We won't use this space to rehash the indefatigable work of our SpiderLabs researchers, who studied the inner workings of Magnitude - which now controls roughly a third of the exploit kit market share - to expose, among other things, its unique payment/revenue structure, effective and efficient administrative capabilities, and difficult-to-detect exploit repertoire.

Instead, we'll focus on what businesses and consumers must do to protect themselves against these malicious programs. After all, over a one-month period, Magnitude attempted to exploit 1.1 million unique machines and actually managed to compromise roughly 210,000 unique machines.

Here are four ways you can stay ahead of the trend:

• While many of the Magnitude infections have occurred via drive-by downloads - in which users are infected simply by visiting a compromised web page - it's always a smart idea to avoid clicking on links and attachments you weren't expecting. In addition, IT departments should eliminate administrator-level rights for regular users, which can reduce vulnerability exposure.

• Because these toolkits typically target vulnerabilities in commonly used third-party software like Java, Adobe Reader and Adobe Flash, ensure your users keep these programs up to date. And consider turning off components you aren't using or which may not even be necessary, such as Java in the browser.

• Exploit kits like Magnitude constantly rotate the malware they use and check the code against common anti-virus products. As such, organizations must implement advanced malware defences, such as web security gateways, which offer real-time protection from targeted attacks, zero-day vulnerabilities, blended threats and data loss.

• Because of skill and budget shortages, some organizations may not have the capabilities to address crafty malware attacks. To help fill the gaps, they can partner with managed security services providers, which come armed with the expertise and scalable intelligence to battle today's advanced threats.


Dan Kaplan is manager of online content at Trustwave and a former IT security reporter and editor.

Latest Trustwave Blogs

Defending Healthcare Databases: Strategies to Safeguard Critical Information

The healthcare sector continues to be a primary target for threat actors, with 2023 seeing a record number of data breaches and compromised records. While successful attacks are inevitable, it’s...

Read More

Trustwave SpiderLabs: Ransomware Gangs Dominate 2024 Education Threat Landscape

The security teams manning the defenses at the higher education and primary school system levels often find themselves being tested by threat actors taking advantage of the sector's inherent cyber...

Read More

LockBit Takedown: Law Enforcement Disrupts Operations, but Ransomware Threats Likely to Persist

The news that US, UK, and other international law enforcement agencies disrupted LockBit is welcome, as stopping any threat group activity is always a positive. The unfortunate aspect is this blow...

Read More