Hackers targeting Drupal vulnerabilities to install the Shellbot Backdoor

A group of hackers is targeting Drupal vulnerabilities, including Drupalgeddon2, patched earlier this year to install a backdoor on compromised servers.

Security experts from IBM are targeting Drupal vulnerabilities, including the CVE-2018-7600 and CVE-2018-7602 flaws, aka Drupalgeddon2 and Drupalgeddon3, to install a backdoor on the infected systems and tack full control of the hosted platforms.

According to the IBM experts, this last wave of attacks is conducted by hackers financially motivated and attempt to exploit the lack of patch management in many Drupal websites.

“In a recent investigation, our MSS intelligence analysts discovered that malicious actors are using recent Drupal vulnerabilities to target various websites and possibly the underlying infrastructure that hosts them, leveraging Shellbot to open backdoors.” states the post published by IBM.

“This appears to be a financially motivated effort to mass-compromise websites.”

The expert observed a large number of HTTP POST requests being sent by the same IP address as part of a widespread cyber-attack. The requests were used by the attackers to download a Perl script to launch the Shellbot backdoor that leverages an Internet Relay Chat (IRC) channel as C&C.

Drupal attacks

The bot included multiple tools to carry out distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks and scan for SQL injection weaknesses and other vulnerabilities, including privilege escalation issues.

The bot was designed to automate scanning a large number of websites and fully compromise the vulnerable ones.

Experts pointed out that the Shellbot code first appeared in 2005 and is being used by several threat groups, it was also used in the massive crypto-mining campaign that was exploiting the CVE-2017-5638 Apache Struts vulnerability (CVE-2017-5638) in March 2017.

It costs a lot of time and money to find or buy a zero-day flaw — two resources cybercriminals are typically not willing to invest. It is much more lucrative to use existing vulnerabilities such as Drupalgeddon and attack code in an automated way, especially when users delay patching and updating their applications,” IBM concludes.



Pierluigi Paganini

(Security Affairs – Drupal, hacking)


The post Hackers targeting Drupal vulnerabilities to install the Shellbot Backdoor appeared first on Security Affairs.

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