Linux Malware on the Rise

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Linux Malware on the Rise

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Ransomware, cryptojacking, and a cracked version of the penetration-testing tool Cobalt Strike have increasingly targeted Linux in multicloud infrastructure, report states.

With Linux frequently used as the basis for cloud services, virtual-machine hosts, and container-based infrastructure, attackers have increasingly targeted Linux environments with sophisticated exploits and malware.

New analysis, based on telemetry collected from attacks on VMware customers, shows an increasing number of ransomware programs targeting Linux hosts to infect virtual-machine images or containers; more use of cryptojacking to monetize illicit access; and more than 14,000 instances of Cobalt Strike — 56% of which are pirated copies used by criminals or thrifty companies that have not bought licenses. The red-team tool has become so popular as a way to manage compromised machines that underground developers created their own protocol-compatible version of the Windows program for Linux, VMware states in a newly released report, "Exposing Malware in Linux-based Multi-Cloud Environments."

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