Listen to this Article
Ross McKerchar, Sophos Vice President and Chief Information Security Officer:
“This is one of the farthest reaching criminal ransomware attacks that Sophos has ever seen. At this time, our evidence shows that more than 70 managed service providers were impacted, resulting in more than 350 further impacted organizations. We expect the full scope of victim organizations to be higher than what’s being reported by any individual security company. Victims span a range of worldwide locations with most in the United States, Germany and Canada, and others in Australia, the U.K. and other regions.”
Mark Loman, Sophos Director of Engineering:
“Sophos is actively investigating the attack on Kaseya, which we see as a supply chain distribution attack. The adversaries are using MSPs as their distribution method to hit as many businesses as possible, regardless of size or industry type. This is a pattern we’re starting to see as attackers are constantly changing their methods for maximum impact, whether for financial reward, stealing data credentials and other proprietary information that they could later leverage, and more. In other widescale attacks we’ve seen in the industry, such as WannaCry, the ransomware itself was the distributor – in this case, MSPs using a widely used IT management are the conduit.
“Some successful ransomware attackers have raked in millions of dollars in ransom money, potentially allowing them to purchase highly valuable zero-day exploits. Certain exploits are usually only deemed attainable by nation-states. Where ‘nation-states’ would sparingly use them for a specific isolated attack, in the hands of cybercriminals, an exploit for a vulnerability in global platform can disrupt many businesses at once and have impact on our daily lives.
“A day after the attack, it became more evident that an affiliate of the REvil Ransomware-as-a-Service (RaaS) leveraged a zero-day exploit that allowed it to distribute the ransomware via Kaseya’s Virtual Systems Administrator (VSA) software. Usually, this software offers a highly trusted communication channel that allows MSPs unlimited privileged access to help many businesses with their IT environments.”
Based on Sophos threat intelligence, REvil has been active in recent weeks, including in the JBS attack, and is currently the dominant ransomware gang involved in Sophos’ defensive managed threat response cases.