Dyre Threat – Infected Emails Diversify Tactics to Target Thousands of Users, Bitdefender Finds

Another global spam campaign spreading banking Trojan Dyre hit users Inboxes in recent days, using various approaches to maximize damage, Bitdefender malware analysts found.

Thousands of people were invited to download an archive containing a malicious .exe file claiming to come from a tax consultant. Posing as a follow-up email, the message asks users to urgently download the attached archive and provide information to complete a financial transaction. A very similar email – from the second day of the blast – pretends to attach financial documentation and asks the user to verify its authenticity. A third email warns the recipient of penalties imposed on his company and invites him to see “the administrative determination.”


The .exe file acts as a downloader that fetches and executes the Dyreza banker Trojan, also known as Dyre.

First seen in 2014, Dyre is very similar to the infamous Zeus. It installs itself on the user’s computer and becomes active only when the user enters credentials on a specific site, usually the login page of a banking institution or financial service. through a man-in-the-browser attack, Hackers inject malicious Javascript code through a man-in-the-browser attack, allowing them to steal credentials and further manipulate accounts– all completely covertly.

Bitdefender malware researchers have bypassed encrypted communications with the C&C server to uncover the list of targeted websites. Customers of reputable financial and banking institutions from the US, UK, Germany, Denmark, Australia, Romania and France have been targeted.

[US] Clients of Bank of America, Citibank, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase and PayPal may have been exposed to theft.

[UK] Customers of Barclays, Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC, Lloyds Bank, Santander have been targeted by hackers.

[Germany] Deutsche Bank, Valovis Bank and volkswagenbank.de customers may have had credentials and money stolen from their accounts.

[Australia] Hackers went after clients of the Bank of Melbourne and local units of ING, Citibank and HSBC.

According to Bitdefender Labs, 19,000 malicious emails were sent in three days from spam servers in the US, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Denmark, Russia, China, South Korea, UK, Australia and several other areas.

Bitdefender, which detects and blocks the threat, reminds users to avoid clicking links in e-mails from unknown e-mail addresses and, of course, keep their anti-malware solution up to date with the latest virus definitions.

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