New Malware Campaign Impersonates AI Tools To Trick Users

Ransomware Attack Steals Data from Java MalwareResearchers at ESET warn that malvertising campaigns are impersonating AI tools to trick users into installing malware. The Rilide infostealer, for example, is being distributed via a malicious browser extension posing as Sora or Gemini.

“In the case of the malicious browser extension, it is delivered to victims who have been duped into clicking on malicious ads, typically on Facebook, that promise the services of a generative AI model,” the researchers write.

“Although the extension itself masquerades as Google Translate, it offers the official webpage to one of the AI services used as a lure; the lures include OpenAI’s Sora and Google’s Gemini. Since August 2023, ESET telemetry has recorded over 4,000 attempts to install the malicious extension."

Additionally, the Vidar malware is spreading through a phony installer for the Midjourney image generator.

"Spread via Facebook ads, Telegram groups, and dark web forums, the malicious installer purports to offer Midjourney, an AI image generator, but delivers the Vidar infostealer instead,” the researchers write.

“Upon execution, if the installer detects that a Java runtime environment (JRE) is not installed on the system, an error message about the missing runtime is shown and the official Java download page is opened; Java is required for the installer to run. If the JRE was already installed, then a splash screen advertising Midjourney is shown.”

Jiří Kropáč, Director of Threat Detection at ESET, stated, “Although the ongoing development of generative AI models has been accompanied by safeguards to prevent their abuse, this has not prevented cybercrooks from pressing the topic of generative AI into cybercriminal service.

Since 2023, we have seen predominantly infostealers abusing this theme and expect that trend to continue. Instead of clicking on untrustworthy links promising access to generative AI models, always navigate to the official websites of the providers. And to stay protected against infostealers, make sure to run reputable security solutions on your devices.”

KnowBe4 empowers your workforce to make smarter security decisions every day. Over 65,000 organizations worldwide trust the KnowBe4 platform to strengthen their security culture and reduce human risk.

ESET has the story.

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