Hackers Install macOS Malware Using Weaponised Calendar Invites

Hackers use weaponized calendar invites to exploit vulnerabilities in email systems, tricking users into clicking on malicious links or downloading malware disguised as event attachments. 

By leveraging trust in calendar invitations, threat actors increase the likelihood of successful phishing attacks and unauthorized access to sensitive information.

Cybersecurity researchers at Malwarebytes recently discovered that hackers are actively exploiting the weaponized calendar invites to install macOS malware.

macOS Malware Calendar Invites

Mac users seeking cryptocurrency opportunities are targeted by cybercriminals using fake calendar invites.

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Links sent during attacks install malware on the target’s machine. 

Brian Krebs flagged the issue, and asserted that scammers pose as cryptocurrency investors, and lure people into fake partnership meetings on Telegram.

Luring message (Source – MalwareBytes)

Signum Capital issued a warning about impersonation attempts on Twitter in January.

Threat actors contact the targets via Telegram DMs in which they lure their targets by offering opportunities for calls or meetings.

Interested targets receive fake meeting invitations. 

When victims attempt to join, the link fails. Scammers blame regional access restrictions and advise running a script to fix it. 

Malwarebytes’ Thomas Reed confirmed threat actors’ use of scripts to compromise users isn’t new.

AppleScripts come in .scpt files, but victims need to open in Script Editor and may spot the code.

AppleScript applets act like normal apps, enhancing trustworthiness with code signing and icons. 

Script Editor (Source – MalwareBytes)

Due to this obfuscating the code is possible which makes it less likely for Apple’s notarization process to detect potential threats.

When a user enters their password, the script doesn’t see it but gains root access. Actions run with administrator privileges without additional authentication. 

The script can easily trick users into granting root permissions through a standard authentication request dialog.

AppleScript excels at malware crafting. Certain malicious programs like OSX.DubRobber, OSX.OSAMiner utilized AppleScript solely or near-solely.

A basic Apple Script, in this case, downloaded and ran a macOS Trojan whose purpose is unknown.

If it’s revealed as a cryptocurrency-stealing banking Trojan, then it wouldn’t be surprising.

How To Recognize The Scam?

Here below we have mentioned all the key tactics used by the threat actors, and these tactics will help in recognizing the scam:-

  • DM approach on Telegram
  • Crypto investment lure
  • Calendly platform preferred
  • Fake “regional restriction” urgency
  • Script with .scpt extension
  • Hosted on a fake meeting support site

You can block malware, including Trojans, ransomware, spyware, rootkits, worms, and zero-day exploits, with Perimeter81 malware protection. All are incredibly harmful, can wreak havoc, and damage your network.

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Tushar Subhra Dutta

Tushar is a Cyber security content editor with a passion for creating captivating and informative content. With years of experience under his belt in Cyber Security, he is covering Cyber Security News, technology and other news.

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