Once considered a loader for other malware, Valak regularly conducts reconnaissance and steals information and credentials, new analysis shows.
Over the past six months, a surge of development activity on a malicious program known as Valak — traditionally used for loading other malware on compromised systems — has transformed the software into a tool for reconnaissance and the stealing of credentials and other sensitive information, according to new analysis by Cybereason.
The developers behind the malware have released more than 20 different versions in the past six months, turning the program into a multistage modular framework that can be upgraded with additional functionality through plug-ins. First discovered in late 2019, Valak focuses on administrators on enterprise networks and specifically targets Microsoft Exchange servers, says Assaf Dahan, head of threat research at Cybereason, a threat-protection firm.
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