TinyPOS: Handcrafted Malware in Assembly Code

Kacy Zurkus | May 02, 2019

TinyPOS: Handcrafted Malware in Assembly Code
Legacy software vulnerabilities have created opportunities for hackers to steal credit card data and other personal information using tiny point of sale (POS) malware, according to research published by Forcepoint. Researchers reportedly analyzed 2,000 samples of POS malware and found that many are handcrafted, written in assembly code and very small; thus, researchers aptly named the malware TinyPOS. Of the samples analyzed, 95% were loaders used to distribute malware to systems. In addition, researchers found that system compromises can go months without detection due to the small code size (2.7kb). Though researchers suggested that protecting against these attacks is not difficult, the issue for many organizations is that they are using old, outdated POS software and hardware that can do a lot of damage. The samples were grouped into four categories: loaders, mappers, scrapers and cleaners, wrote Robert Neumann, senior security researcher at Forcepoint.

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The situation is critical: 50% of all IT security vulnerabilities are the result of out-of-date application patches. Your business can’t afford to ignore this risk. 63% of security vulnerabilities discovered in 2016 could have been prevented with a strong patching policy. 43% of cyber-attacks


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