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Showing posts from February, 2012

Decrypting embedded encrypted executables

In addition to the detection of embedded executables in documents, you will probably want to run the malware in your dynamic analysis sandbox or do a static analysis in IDA. To decrypt the executable or embedded clean documents etc that are obfuscated/encrypted, we have the following simple script. First you'll need the XOR key and ROL decode shift from a Cryptam report:

Download our cryptam_unxor.php script.

Sample usage:
dev:cryptam_test dev$ strings 34eba128caa21df52b7cec6ea1c80a91.virus|egrep This.program
dev:cryptam_test dev$ php cryptam_unxor.php 34eba128caa21df52b7cec6ea1c80a91.virus -xor 000102030405060708090a0b0c0d0e0f101112131415161718191a1b1c1d1e1f202122232425262728292a2b2c2d2e2f303132333435363738393a3b3c3d3e3f404142434445464748494a4b4c4d4e4f505152535455565758595a5b5c5d5e5f606162636465666768696a6b6c6d6e6f707172737475767778797a7b7c7d7e7f808182838485868788898a8b8c8d8e8f909192939495969798999a9b9c9d9e9fa0a1a2a3a4a5a6a7a8a9aaabacadaeafb0b1b2b3b4b5b6b7b8b9babbbcbdbebfc0c1c2c3c4c5…

Obfuscation and detection of embedded executables

We're going to talk a little bit more about how our new Cryptam system detects malware documents based on identification of the encrypted executables. A document exploit needs to install an executable, those executables are usually either obfuscated and embedded in the document, or downloaded from a remote site.

APT type targeted email attacks, or "spear phishing" attacks, in our experience, most commonly embed the executable trojan within the document exploit. From plaintext, to obfuscation using 1-1024 byte XOR keys, counters, and Rol/Ror bit shifting are all commonly seen.

Common AV typically fails with detecting malware documents, as the exploit shellcode is usually heavily packed, and the XOR encryption creates a huge number of variants of potential signatures, so usually AV detection ends up being hash based and lags behind the attacks with new attacks getting only 10-20% detection on Virustotal.

Our Cryptam system uses the entropy of the file content to ignore legiti…

New malware document scanner tool released

We've recently released our malware document scanner tool called Cryptam (which stands for cryptanalysis of malware) . This system scans document files such as MS Office (.doc/.ppt/.xls), PDF and other document formats for embedded executables whether encrypted or not. As most embedded malware executables use varying lengths of XOR and ROL/ROR obfuscation to evade traditional A/V detection, we focus on the detection of the embedded executable rather than the exploit itself.

A typical Cryptam report visually shows three critical pieces of the cryptanalysis done. The first graph shows the count for each ascii character in the file, obvious single byte XOR keys can be seen here. The second graph is the entropy of the file, most documents other than PDFs are very light entropy on legitimate content, and only images or the embedded executables showing as red high entropy sections. The third and final graphic is the XOR dispersion over 1024 bytes with the calculated key overlayed. We de…