Published On: Thu, Jun 8th, 2017

Hackers Used Britney Spear’s Official Instagram Handle to Cover Up Control Server

A Russian-speaking hacking organisation that is famous for targeting supervision bodies around a universe is now regulating amicable media channels to facade a attack. The organisation is holding advantage of amicable media apps like Instagram to cover notice malware once it corrupts a main system. There are extensions that work in a backdoor and detect primogenitor server through comments on amicable media. The latest amicable bottom used by a hackers is Britney Spear’s Instagram account.

A news published by researchers from antivirus provider Eset, suggested a backdoor Trojan that used a criticism box of Britney Spears’s central Instagram to locate a control server that sends directions and offloads information taken from putrescent computers. This new technique is used by a hazard organisation famous as Turla. By regulating amicable media channels, a enemy are masking a tangible plcae and servers, that creates them harder to detect by agencies. The enemy never directly anxiety a control servers, conjunction in a malware nor a criticism box.

Using Firefox Extensions

Hackers are regulating opposite channels to facade their strange servers. The latest pretence is to implement damaging Firefox plug-ins on systems and afterwards control a trail by criticism sections on renouned amicable media accounts.

This is not a initial time when researchers have detected backdoors for malware. In 2014, researchers during Kaspersky Lab found an impossibly sly Linux backdoor that used to send information from Windows systems in supervision offices. The hacking group, Turla has been concerned in a accumulation of malware campaigns, some of that used satellite-based Internet connectors to censor their servers.

In their latest report, Eset researchers also mentioned a Firefox browser prolongation sheltered as a confidence feature. It was used by outsiders to fetch information from putrescent systems. The prolongation also used programming tricks to send a information to a primogenitor server. This prolongation was distributed by an unnamed confidence association in Switzerland. The antagonistic prolongation would discriminate a tradition crush value mentioned in a criticism box (as mentioned on Britney Spear’s central Instagram account). It looks for a tradition crush value 183, and once it matches, a prolongation runs a trail of URL.

Researchers exhibit how criticism box showing works on Britney Spear’s Instagram account:

The prolongation will demeanour during any photo’s criticism and will discriminate a tradition crush value. If a crush matches 183, it will afterwards run this unchanging countenance on a criticism in sequence to obtain a trail of a URL:


Looking a bit some-more closely during a unchanging expression, we see it is looking for possibly @|# or a Unicode impression 200d. This impression is indeed a non-printable impression called ‘Zero Width Joiner,’ routinely used to apart emojis. Pasting a tangible criticism or looking during a source, we can see that this impression precedes any impression that creates a trail of a URL:

smith2155#2hot make loveid to her, uupss #Hot #X

When solution this condensed link, it leads to, that was used in a past as a watering hole CC by a Turla crew.

After meaningful about a antagonistic prolongation debate by Turla, Firefox developers are restructuring a browser to invalidate damaging extensions. In a meantime, we would advise the readers to check their extensions list in Firefox browser and rabble the suspicious ones right away.


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