Numerous versions of the Mirai IoT bot malware have surfaced since the creators of the original code – one of whom is a former Rutgers University student – first released it in Sept. 2016. The latest iteration of Mirai is dubbed “OMG,” and turns infected IoT devices into proxy servers while also retaining the original malware’s DDoS attack capabilities.
Security researchers at Fortinet recently encountered the new Mirai variant, and say the modification likely provides the malware authors another way to generate money from the code. Satori, another IoT bot malware based on Mirai code, was discovered in December and is designed for mining cryptocurrencies rather than launching DDoS attacks.
“One way to earn money with proxy servers is to sell the access to these servers to other cybercriminals,” Fortinet said in a blog post this week. Proxies give cybercriminals a way to remain anonymous when carrying out malicious activity like cyber theft, or breaking into systems. “Adversaries could also spread multiple attacks through a single source. They could get around some types of IP blocking and filtering,” as well, according to a Fortinet spokesperson.
Read more about the latest iteration of Mirai dubbed “OMG” on DarkReading.