Around the end of 2019, malware researchers uncovered a brand-new data wiping threat. The newly discovered malware is called Dustman, and it is likely the creation of an Iranian hacking group. Iranian cybercriminals are known to have an affinity for data wipers as this threat type ensures a very significant amount of damage.
Attacked the Bahraini Oil Company Bapco
The Dustman data wiper has already claimed one high-profile victim in the face of the large Bahraini oil corporation named Bapco. A Saudi Arabian security company detected that Bapco had fallen victim to a previously unknown data wiper. After the discovery of this new threat named Dustman, many other cybersecurity agencies worldwide began studying the new strain of malware. Data wipers, in general, aim to cause as much damage as possible, usually, by deleting the data present on the target's hard drives permanently. The Dustman data wiper is no exception.
As soon as this threat manages to compromise a network, it begins wiping off the data from the victims' hard drives. Data wipers are threatening for big corporations and government bodies, particularly, as they tend to store large amounts of important data on their servers. According to malware researchers, the Dustman data wiper bears many similarities with the infamous Shamoon wiper. The Shamoon data wiper also is the creation of an Iranian hacking group.
So far, the only reported victim is the Bahraini Bapco company. However, the Dustman data wiper is a highly potent threat, and it is likely that its operators will employ it in future campaigns. Businesses, especially in the Middle Eastern region, should certainly look into improving their cybersecurity because Iranian hackers are highly capable and very efficient when carrying out attacks.