A new (and cheap) service has been discovered that offers hackers a simple method to establish a base where they manage and carry out their cyber crimes, and it is gaining ground.
As reported by Bleeping Computersecurity researchers unearthed a program called Dark Utilities, effectively providing a command and control (C2) center.
The service supports payloads for Windows, Linux, and Python. It also prevents hackers from starting and setting up a C2 communication channel. For reference, a C2 server is the central hub in managing the distribution of malware.
It also allows threat actors to manage commands, configurations/new payloads, and most importantly, extract data from systems that have been breached.
The Dark Utilities platform operates as a “C2-as-a-service” (C2aaS). It comes as an anonymous C2 infrastructure, with prices starting from €9.99, or just over $10.
It’s certainly starting to gain momentum among underground hacking services, with Cisco Talos confirming which already has 3,000 active subscribers. As a result, whoever is behind the operation is making around €30,000 in revenue.
The news of the existence of Dark Utilities materialized in the early stages of 2022. It offers a complete C2 system that is compatible with both the famous Tor network and normal browsers. The payloads are housed within the Interplanetary File System (IPFS), which acts as a decentralized network system that stores and shares data.
Cisco Talos researchers confirmed that after the threat actor chooses an operating system, it produces a chain of commands that “threat actors typically embed themselves in PowerShell or Bash scripts to facilitate retrieval and execution of the payload on the victim machines.
The report also adds how the Dark Utilities admin panel presents various options for different attacks, ranging from standard Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) operations and crypto-jacking.
Bleeping Computer emphasizes that considering the popularity it has achieved in the span of a few months, coupled with an attractive price tag, Dark Utilities is almost ready to become an even more in-demand platform, especially for hackers who are not very experienced in cybercriminal activity.
The amount of hacking-related activity throughout 2022 is unprecedented, to say the least. with the hackers constantly changing their methods and moving faster than ever when it comes to scanning for potential vulnerabilities, it’s no wonder cyberattacks have almost doubled since last year.