The Hoardy backdoor Trojan is a threat that has been employed in several attacks targeting high-profile individuals. This Trojan is the creation of a hacking group called the Flea group, and its most infamous campaign took place right before the G20 summit in 2014 and targeted high-ranking politicians. The Hoardy backdoor Trojan has since been utilized in several other shady operations. Usually, hacking campaigns that employ the Hoardy backdoor do not last very long, which has led experts to believe that the goal of the attackers is likely to grab as much information as they can quickly and cease the operation to remain under the radar of the victim.
To propagate the Hoardy backdoor Trojan, the Flea hacking group is using phishing emails that they have tailored to look as legitimate as possible. The target would receive an email that contains a corrupted, macro-laced attachment masked as a harmless Microsoft Office document. The users will be urged to launch the attached file, and if they succumb, the macro script hidden in the document will plant the Hoardy backdoor Trojan on the targeted system.
The Hoardy Trojan makes sure to gain persistence on the infected machine by tampering with the Windows Registry system, which will ensure that the threat is launched as soon as the computer is started. Next, the Hoardy Trojan will establish a connection with the operators’ C&C (Command & Control) server. The Hoardy backdoor Trojan has been programmed to collect basic data regarding the compromised system and then exfiltrate the gathered information to the C&C server of the attackers. The Hoardy backdoor Trojan is able to:
- Execute remote commands on the infected machine.
- Upload and launch files from the C&C server of its operators.
- Download and launch files from a particular URL.
- Update itself.
- Remove itself.
Despite the high-profile targets that the Flea hacking group tends to go after, the Hoardy backdoor Trojan is not very impressive in regards to its functionality. The authors of the Hoardy Trojan have not put much thought or effort into obfuscating the code of their creation and have thus made it rather easy for malware researchers to study and analyze this threat.