Microsoft’s PowerShell is being increasingly used to spread malware

Radu Tyrsina
by Radu Tyrsina
CEO & Founder
Radu Tyrsina has been a Windows fan ever since he got his first PC, a Pentium III (a monster at that time). For most of the kids of his age, the Internet was an amazing...
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We have to agree that Microsoft’s PowerShell is an awesome tool for IT professionals that are running Windows on their machines, but it seems that cyber criminals are now using it to spread malware.

According to Symantec, there are a large number of malicious PowerShell scripts in the wild and it seems these threats are growing at a fast pace, especially in the case of companies using the shell framework.

The security firm claims that most malicious PowerShell scripts are being used as downloads. Once the download is finished, the code is executed on the infected computer and, after that, the malware is spread across the entire network.

Scripts That Are Used To Remove Security Protection

Symantec claims that there are three common malware families that are spreading via PowerShell scripts: Trojan.Kotver, W97M.Downloader and JS.Downloader.

Symantec said that “over the last six months, we blocked an average of 466,028 emails with malicious JavaScript per day, and this trend is growing. Not all malicious JavaScript files use PowerShell to download files, but we have seen a steady increase in the framework’s usage”.

To make things even worse, cyber criminals are now creating more complex PowerShell scripts that function in stages, so instead of infecting the target computer directly, it will actually link it to a different script that will eventually launch the malware. By doing this, the malware is bypassing certain security solution and protection applications, including cases where scripts can be developed to uninstall some security solutions or even steal passwords that are used in the network.

We suggest you update your security software as often as possible in order to keep your computer safe. At the same time, you should always have the latest version of PowerShell installed.

Are you using PowerShell? Tell us your thoughts about the security issues this application comes with!

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