It is common sense that the Windows operating system is the most popular OS in the world. Approximately 90% of users are running Windows on their systems. Next comes Apple’s Mac operating system, the OSX, with 7% base. Meanwhile, Linux users comprise only 1% of overall users worldwide. This is why it is very rare to come across malware, which is built to target Linux users specifically. However, recently, a new threat that is tailored to go after Linux running systems has surfaced the Internet. Its name is EvilGnome, and it imitates the legitimate Linux application called GNOME. This threat manages to stay under the radar of anti-malware applications, but once cybersecurity researchers spotted it and dissected it, they found out that the EvilGnome may be a Linux backdoor that is still an unfinished project.

Likely Originates from Russia

Some malware experts speculate that the EvilGnome backdoor may be a hacking tool developed by the popular Gamaredon Group. This hacking group is believed to originate from Russia and has been active since 2013. While in the past the Gamaredon Group tended to rely on ready-made hacking tools, in recent years they have begun developing their own tools. Not only are they improving their technical but also expanding their reach as it is believed that the EvilGnome backdoor is their first hacking tool that targets Linux.


The creators of the EvilGnome have taken an unusual approach, and instead of targeting servers, they have opted to go after Linux desktop users. The EvilGnome backdoor can harm the users’ privacy seriously because it cannot only spy on their desktop and take screenshots but also turn on the microphone and use it to record audio, which is then transferred to the attackers’ server. This backdoor also can download files from the infiltrated computer, as well as upload additional malware to the PC. When malware experts inspected the EvilGnome’s code, they found out that its authors also are working on adding a keylogging feature to their creation.

Cybercriminals have been developing a taste for Linux for some time now, and Linux users who still believe that they can never become victims of malware are inviting some real trouble their way. Nowadays, no user is safe online unless they have installed a reputable anti-virus software suite which would keep the endless threats lurking on the Internet at bay.


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