The group, known for masquerading as various APT groups, is back with a spate of attacks on U.S. companies.
A distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) extortion group has blazed back on the cybercrime scene, this time under the name of “Fancy Lazarus.” It’s been launching a series of new attacks that may or may not have any teeth, researchers said.
The new name is a tongue-in-cheek combination of the Russia-linked Fancy Bear advanced persistent threat (APT) and North Korea’s Lazarus Group. The choice seems natural, given that the gang was last seen – including in a major campaign in October – purporting to be various APTs, including Armada Collective, Fancy Bear and Lazarus Group.
According to Proofpoint, this time around the gang has been sending threatening, targeted emails to various organizations, including those operating in the energy, financial, insurance, manufacturing, public utilities and retail sectors – asking for a two-Bitcoin (BTC) starting ransom (around $75,000) if companies want to avoid a crippling DDoS attack. The price doubles to four BTC after the deadline, and increases by one BTC each day after that. The targets are mostly located in the U.S.
While it’s hard to make a definitive correlation, the timing of some of the Fancy Lazarus campaigns correspond with high-profile ransomware attacks over the past six months, in terms of targeting the same vertical industries, according to Sherrod DeGrippo, senior director of threat research and detection at Proofpoint.
“These include utility, natural gas and manufacturing,” she told Threatpost. “This could be an attempt to ride the coattails of high-profile news stories and result in a higher likelihood of payment. Another trend we have seen over the past four months are a focus on sending these threats to financial institutions and large insurance providers.”