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Russian Hackers Moved Ruble-Dollar Exchange Rate Using Malware


A Russian hacking group named as METEL, cracked into Kazan-based Energobank and altered the ruble-dollar exchange rate for 14 minutes. This breach caused the currency exchange rate to fluctuate between 55 and 56 rubles per dollar, and this resulted in increment of Ruble’s value.

How they did this?

According to Moscow-based security firm, hired to investigate the attack, hackers used malware known as Corkow Trojan to penetrate the defenses and initiated trades at non-market rates of around $500 million. The hackers took advantage of a Spear Phishing technique which come from a legit source. When someone clicks on this malicious link in the mail, it gained the access to the system and leads to exploitation.

After taking over the access to a local system, the trojan caused the attack to its Intranet. In this way, malware found an isolated system which handles the money transaction to the outer world.

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About Virus

Corkow malware was discovered in 2011 and its regular updates evade detection by antivirus programs. It has infected more than 100 financial institutions and infiltrated more than 250, 000 computers.

Loss that bank faced

The bank claimed loss of 244 million rubles ($3.2 million) due to hack. The attack was ported to target ATMs of Russia and affected Russian bank card system that resulted in millions of rubles being stolen through ATMs in August.

The authority has not handcuffed any of its criminals.


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