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Companies based in the U.S. have been at the receiving end of an “aggressive” Qakbot malware campaign that leads to Black Basta ransomware infections on compromised networks.

“In this latest campaign, the Black Basta ransomware gang is using QakBot malware to create an initial point of entry and move laterally within an organization’s network,” Cybereason researchers Joakim Kandefelt and Danielle Frankel said in a report shared with The Hacker News.

Black Basta, which emerged in April 2022, follows the tried-and-tested approach of double extortion to steal sensitive data from targeted companies and use it as a leverage to extort cryptocurrency payments by threatening to release the stolen information.

This is not the first time the ransomware crew has been observed using Qakbot (aka QBot, QuackBot, or Pinkslipbot). Last month, Trend Micro disclosed similar attacks that entailed the use of Qakbot to deliver the Brute Ratel C4 framework, which, in turn, was leveraged to drop Cobalt Strike.

Black Basta Ransomware

images from Hacker News