Close
Josh Lefkowitz
Chief Executive Officer
Josh Lefkowitz executes the company’s strategic vision to empower organizations with the fastest, most comprehensive coverage of threatening activity on the internet. He has worked extensively with authorities to track and analyze terrorist groups. Mr. Lefkowitz also served as a consultant to the FBI’s senior management team and worked for a top tier, global investment bank. Mr. Lefkowitz holds an MBA from Harvard University and a BA from Williams College.
Evan Kohlmann
Chief Innovation Officer
Evan Kohlmann focuses on product innovation at Flashpoint where he leverages fifteen years’ experience tracking Al-Qaida, ISIS, and other terrorist groups. He has consulted for the US Department of Defense, the US Department of Justice, the Australian Federal Police, and Scotland Yard’s Counter Terrorism Command, among others. Mr. Kohlmann holds a JD from the Univ. of Pennsylvania Law School and a BSFS in International Politics from the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown Univ.
Josh Devon
Chief Operating Officer / Chief Product Officer
Josh Devon focuses on product vision and strategy at Flashpoint while ensuring the company’s departments function synergistically during its rapid growth. He also works to ensure that customers receive best in class products, services, and support. Previously, Mr. Devon co-founded the SITE Intelligence Group where he served as Assistant Director. He holds an MA from SAIS at Johns Hopkins Univ. At the Univ. of Pennsylvania, he received a BS in Economics from the Wharton School and a BA in English from the College of Arts and Sciences.
Chris Camacho
Chief Revenue Officer
As Chief Revenue Officer, Chris Camacho leads the company’s global sales team, which includes solution architecture, business development, strategic integrations, partnerships, and revenue operations; he is also the architect of Flashpoint’s FPCollab sharing community. With over 15 years of cybersecurity leadership experience, he has spearheaded initiatives across Operational Strategy, Incident Response, Threat Management, and Security Operations to ensure cyber risk postures align with business goals. Most recently as a Senior Vice President of Information Security at Bank of America, Mr. Camacho was responsible for overseeing the Threat Management Program. An entrepreneur, Mr. Camacho also serves as CEO for NinjaJobs: a career-matching community for elite cybersecurity talent. He has a BS in Decision Sciences & Management of Information Systems from George Mason University.
Lisa Iadanza
Chief People Officer
Lisa M. Iadanza leads all functional areas of People Operations at Flashpoint, including human resources, talent acquisition & management, employee engagement, and developing high performance teams. In addition to collaborating with the executive team to drive strategic growth, she plays an integral role in fostering Flashpoint’s culture and mission. Driven by her passions for mentorship, employee advocacy, and talent development, Ms. Iadanza has more than twenty years of experience in building, scaling, and leading human resources functions. Prior to Flashpoint, she held leadership roles at Conde Nast, Terra Technology, and FreeWheel. She is a member of the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) and holds a bachelor’s degree in management with concentrations in human resources and marketing from State University of New York at Binghamton.
Donald Saelinger
President
Donald Saelinger is responsible for driving strategic and operational initiatives to accelerate Flashpoint’s growth and scale. In this role, Donald leads a broad portfolio including Marketing, Customer Success, Revenue Operations, Legal and related functions, and is focused on helping the company execute on a go-to-market approach that maximizes value to our customers. Prior to Flashpoint, Donald served as Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel of Endgame, Inc., an endpoint detection and response company acquired by Elastic N.V. in 2019, and where he led a range of teams focused on growth, scale, and legal and compliance matters. Donald also previously served as the General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer at Opower, Inc. (NYSE: OPWR), a global provider of SaaS solutions to electric and gas utilities that was acquired by Oracle, Inc. in 2016. Donald graduated from Columbia University in 2000 and received his JD from the Georgetown University Law Center in 2006.
Rob Reznick
SVP Finance and Corporate Development
Rob Reznick leads the finance, accounting, and corporate development teams at Flashpoint. Rob previously served as Director of Finance & Accounting for 1010data (acquired by Advance/Newhouse), and Director of Finance for Financial Guard (acquired by Legg Mason) after prior work in forensic accounting and dispute consulting. Mr. Reznick is a Certified Public Accountant and holds an MBA and MAcc from the Fisher College of Business at the Ohio State University, and a BBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.
Tom Hofmann
SVP Intelligence
Tom Hofmann leads the intelligence directorate that is responsible for the collection, analysis, production, and dissemination of Deep and Dark Web data. He works closely with clients to prioritize their intelligence requirements and ensures internal Flashpoint operations are aligned to those needs. Mr. Hofmann has been at the forefront of cyber intelligence operations in the commercial, government, and military sectors, and is renowned for his ability to drive effective intelligence operations to support offensive and defensive network operations.
Jake Wells
SVP Solutions Architecture
Jake Wells leads strategic integrations and information sharing as part of the client engagement & development team, which serves as an internal advocate for our government and commercial clients to ensure Flashpoint’s intelligence solutions meet their evolving needs. He leverages a decade of experience running cyber and counterterrorism investigations, most recently with the NYPD Intelligence Bureau, to maximize the value customers generate from our products and services. Mr. Wells holds an MA from Columbia University and a BA from Emory University.
Brian Brown
SVP Strategy and Business Development
Brian Brown is responsible for the overall direction of strategic sales and development supporting Flashpoint’s largest clients. In his role, Mr. Brown focuses on designing and executing growth-oriented sales penetration strategies across multiple vertical markets, including both Government and Commercial, supporting Flashpoint’s Sales and Business Development Teams. An experienced entrepreneur, Mr. Brown also serves as CSO for NinjaJobs, a private community created to match elite cybersecurity talent with top tier global jobs and also advise growth-stage cybersecurity companies.
Justin Rogers
VP Revenue Operations
Justin Rogers leads the Revenue Operations team at Flashpoint, aligning sales, marketing, partnerships, customer success, and finance across vision, planning, process, and goals. He leverages over 15 years of experience in security, strategy, product design, and implementation to drive growth, provide an end-to-end view of the customer journey, and a seamless customer experience. Recently, Justin led Marketing for Centripetal, bringing the first Threat Intelligence Gateway to market. Previously, he managed operations of a Counter IED lab electronics forensics division while forward deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. Justin holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of New Hampshire.
Peter Partyka
VP Engineering
Peter Partyka leads Flashpoint’s engineering teams. Peter previously worked in the quantitative hedge fund space in New York City, implementing security and administrative solutions around proprietary trading platforms, high-availability cloud deployments, and hardening of applications and infrastructure. Peter leverages more than 16 years of experience in technology specializing in application security, red-teaming, penetration testing, exploit development, as well as blue-teaming. Peter has a long track record of managing tech teams and implementing engineering security best practices. Recently Peter led Flashpoint toward GDPR and CCPA compliance and has been a key architect of Flashpoint’s robust compliance programs. Peter has taught advanced cybersecurity courses at New York University and consulted at various tech startups during his career.
Paul Farley
VP APAC Sales
Paul Farley is responsible for the Asia-Pacific region of Flashpoint's international business, including Australia, Japan, and Singapore. In his role at Flashpoint, Paul is executing growth-oriented sales strategies across multiple countries and vertical markets, including both Government and Commercial. Paul has extensive experience leading regional sales for both pre-IPO growth businesses and large organizations such as RSA, EMC and DELL.
Steven Cooperman
VP Public Sector Sales
Steven Cooperman is responsible for Flashpoint’s strategy and sales growth of its public sector business. He also supports the development of a robust partner ecosystem for public sector business to deliver value added offerings and innovation focused to the mission of government. Steven has an established and diverse career in the Public Sector, holding leadership positions at a number of successful enterprise software companies and Federal System Integrators, including ServiceNow, HP, Oracle and Northrop Grumman. He holds an MA in Analytic Geography from the State University of New York - Binghamton, and received his BS in Geology from the State University - Oneonta.
Matthew Howell
VP Product
Matthew Howell leads the Product Management and Product Marketing teams for Flashpoint. He is responsible for developing a strong team that drives product adoption and user engagement through outcome based prioritization, continuous process improvement, and metrics driven development. Matthew brings a passion for diverse ideas, experience launching B2B SaaS products, building integration ecosystems, supporting five 9s SLAs, and leading distributed teams. He holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Virginia
Glenn Lemons
Executive Director Strategic Accounts Engagement
Glenn Lemons is Executive Director, Strategic Accounts Engagement at Flashpoint. He previously served as the acting Director of Citigroup's Cyber Intelligence Center where he was responsible for analyzing and reacting to intelligence from a variety of threats. These threats ranged from fraudulent activity and attempting to defraud Citi's clients to supporting security operations for the firm's worldwide network presence. He has extensive experience working with multiple clients across the financial services, manufacturing, healthcare, and public sectors. Glenn also has more than 26 years of intelligence experience within the operational and support communities in the U.S. military and federal civilian service; seven of which focused on both defensive and offensive cyber operations. While working for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, he testified numerous times before U.S. Congressional committees and member requested open and closed sessions.
Close
Steve Leightell
Steve started his career in Internet sales in the early 1990s and was always a top sales rep before transitioning to business development. By the early 2000s, he was the Director of Business Development at DWL, where he managed a team that built partnerships with Accenture, Oracle, Tata Consulting, Wipro, Cognizant and IBM. Steve designed the channel and strategy that ultimately culminated in the acquisition of DWL by IBM in 2005. He went on to lead a global team within IBM that was responsible for major system integrator partnerships. In 2008, he left IBM to found a niche consulting firm focused on business development for SaaS organizations. Steve holds a BA in anthropology and sociology from Carleton University in Ottawa.
Ellie Wheeler
Ellie Wheeler is a Partner at Greycroft and is based in the firm’s New York office. Prior to joining Greycroft, Ellie worked in a similar role evaluating investment opportunities at Lowercase Capital. Ellie also worked at Cisco in Corporate Development doing acquisitions, investments, and strategy within the unified communications, enterprise software, mobile, and video sectors. While at Cisco, she was involved in multiple acquisitions and investments, including PostPath, Jabber, Xobni, and Tandberg. She began her career in growth capital private equity at Summit Partners in Boston. Ellie graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University with a BA in Psychology and holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Glenn McGonnigle
Glenn McGonnigle is a General Partner at TechOperators. Prior to launching TechOperators in 2008, Glenn was CEO of VistaScape Security Systems, a venture-backed provider of enterprise intelligent video surveillance software. He lead the company through its successful sale to Siemens Building Technologies. Previously, Glenn was a co-founder and senior executive of Atlanta-based Internet Security Systems (ISS) where he helped raise initial venture capital and launch the business. For 7 years, he led the business development team in developing sales channels and entering the managed security services market. During his tenure, the company grew from startup to revenues of over $225 million and was later acquired by IBM for $1.3 billion.
Brendan Hannigan
Brendan joined Polaris Partners in 2016 as an entrepreneur partner. In this role, he focuses on funding and founding companies in the technology sector with a concentration in cloud, analytics, and cybersecurity. Brendan is a co-founder of Sonrai Security and chairman of Twistlock, both Polaris investments. He also currently serves on the board of Bitsight Technologies and Flashpoint. A 25 year technology industry veteran, Brendan was most recently the general manager of IBM Security. Under Brendan’s leadership, IBM Security grew significantly faster than the overall security market to become the number one enterprise security provider in the world with almost $2B of annual revenue.
Matt Devost
Currently, Devost serves as CEO & Co-Founder of OODA LLC as well as a review board member for Black Hat. In 2010, he co-founded the cybersecurity consultancy FusionX LLC which was acquired by Accenture in August 2015, where he went on to lead Accenture's Global Cyber Defense practice. Devost also founded the Terrorism Research Center in 1996 where he served as President and CEO until November 2008 and held founding or leadership roles at iDefense, iSIGHT Partners, Total Intel, SDI, Tulco Holdings, and Technical Defense.
image/svg+xml image/svg+xml
Gain free access to our platform for intel related to the conflict in Ukraine

“Necurs” Botnet Fuels Massive Spam Campaigns Spreading “Jaff” Ransomware

Blog
June 8, 2017

Starting on May 11, 2017, Flashpoint analysts observed several large spam campaigns originating from the Necurs botnet that aim to dupe recipients into opening malicious attachments that infect their computers with “Jaff” ransomware. These spam campaigns feature a multi-stage infection chain including a PDF file, a malicious Microsoft Office document, and finally, the Jaff ransomware loader. This same infection chain has been utilized in the past to infect computers with the Dridex banking Trojan and Jaff’s predecessor, Locky ransomware.

Image 1: The Necurs-Jaff delivery chain reveals heavy usage of PDF attachments.
Image 1: The Necurs-Jaff delivery chain reveals heavy usage of PDF attachments.

The Necurs botnet is comprised of smaller “sub-botnets” distinguishable by the seed value used in the malware’s code for domain generation algorithm (DGA). Although these sub-botnets send different kinds of spam when compared to one another, they all share the same command-and-control (C2) infrastructure. Flashpoint has thus far observed Jaff ransomware emanate from the spam module with a DGA seed of nine.

Prior to a spam run, the node infected with the Necurs malware will first perform a series of checks to ensure it is capable of sending spam. The infected node first receives an updated list of C2 IP addresses for the spam module before it verifies Internet connectivity by downloading Service Pack 1 for Windows 7. Once these checks pass, the bot will do a final connectivity check for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP; TCP Port 25) as depicted in the following packet capture:

Image 2: Packet capture of connectivity checks and spam from a Necurs bot.
Image 2: Packet capture of connectivity checks and spam from a Necurs bot.
Image 3: Malspam with fake headers sent from the Necurs botnet contains a malicious PDF attachment.
Image 3: Malspam with fake headers sent from the Necurs botnet contains a malicious PDF attachment.

Ransomware Analysis

The spam attachments are PDF files containing JavaScript code that automatically executes upon opening the file via the “OpenAction” function. This JavaScript code extracts an embedded, malicious Office document from an object section of the PDF file.

Image 4: Victims may be prompted to open a malicious Office document when viewing the PDF spam attachment.
Image 4: Victims may be prompted to open a malicious Office document when viewing the PDF spam attachment.
Image 5: The encoded Office document in one of the PDF sections.
Image 5: The encoded Office document in one of the PDF sections.

The next item in the infection chain is the malicious Microsoft Office Document that is opened via JavaScript code from the PDF file. This Word document contains macros that download an encrypted binary from one of four URLs, decrypts it with a hardcoded XOR key, then executes the binary – the Jaff ransomware loader.

Image 6: The Word document that is opened by the PDF file.
Image 6: The Word document that is opened by the PDF file.
Image 7: The hardcoded XOR key used to decode the ransomware loader executable.
Image 7: The hardcoded XOR key used to decode the ransomware loader executable.

The Jaff ransomware is a 32-bit Windows executable, containing the malicious obfuscated code. Jaff explicitly targets Windows systems, enumerating the targets’ local file system by searching for specific file extensions to encrypt. Files that have been encrypted are renamed appending the extension .wlu or .jaff. Such extensions are typical for this ransomware. The victim obtains a unique Jaff ID on the Tor website.

The Jaff ransomware sets encryption messages localized to the language detected in the system. Just like its previous variant Locky, this ransomware renders and saves bitmap files in each directory with the encrypted files. The bitmap file is used as a wallpaper displaying the ransom message.

Images 8-10:  The Jaff ransomware attack reveals encryption and its personalized HTML and Bitmap files after the infection.
Images 8-10: The Jaff ransomware attack reveals encryption and its personalized HTML and Bitmap files after the infection.

Jaff enumerates through the GetDrive API from letters A to Z for various types of local drives such as fixed, storage, and removable.

Jaff ransomware is designed to encrypt files even if the C2 check in fails. However, based on the most current assessment, Jaff ransomware sends a GET request to the Jaff domain ending in /a5 leading to the possible Snort signature:

alert any $HOME_NET any -> any any (msg:” possible Jaff C2 check-in alert”; content: flow:to_server,established; content:”GET”; “/a5/”; nocase; http_method; “pcre: “*(\/a5\/)$”; classtype: Trojan-activity)

Image 11: The Jaff ransomware enumerates drives from A to Z before launching its encryption threads.
Image 11: The Jaff ransomware enumerates drives from A to Z before launching its encryption threads.

Based on analysis of the ransomware code, it is apparent Jaff uses both RSA and AES encryption algorithms using Windows Crypto API. The ransomware encrypts files by appending approximately 100 bytes to each file using a WriteFile Windows API call to each file fitting the target extension.

Image 12: Jaff sets the nBytestoWrite argument via appending the encryption blog to each file.
Image 12: Jaff sets the nBytestoWrite argument via appending the encryption blog to each file.

The Jaff ransomware is designed not to run under certain conditions. This mechanism can be imitated, leading to the creation of a mitigation strategy that can be used on machines before infection.

Image 13: Jaff checks for the presence of Russian-language locale on each machine.
Image 13: Jaff checks for the presence of Russian-language locale on each machine.

The API calls GetSystemDefaultLangID and GetUserDefaultLangID return 0x0409 in the EXTENDED ACUMULATOR REGISTER (EAX) on any US English-language machines. In this sense, 0x0409 is the locale culture identifier (LCID) for the English (United States) locale. However, the Jaff ransomware loads the return value into AX and compares it to the hardcoded value “19,” which is the AX identifier for the same calls if the language was set to Russian.

Below is the relevant disassembled routine that is used to check if the ransomware targets Russian-language machines:

call GetUserDefaultLangID
mov edx, 3ff
and ax, dx
cmp ax, 19
je .TerminateRansomwareProcess
call GetSystemDefaultLangID
mov edx, 3ff
and ax, dx
cmp ax, 19
je .TerminateRansomwareProcess

Image 14: The Jaff ransomware checks for the hardcoded value 19 that corresponds to the last two characters of the Russian-language LCID.
Image 14: The Jaff ransomware checks for the hardcoded value 19 that corresponds to the last two characters of the Russian-language LCID.
Image 15: The Jaff ransomware targets various file extensions and deletes itself via a cmd[.]exe command.
Image 15: The Jaff ransomware targets various file extensions and deletes itself via a cmd[.]exe command.

Additionally, when successfully launched, the Jaff ransomware uses a simple self-kill routine by executing the command “del /Q /F <path to Jaff ransomware>” via cmd[.]exe /c in order to delete the original ransomware executable from the victim machine.

The following file extensions are attacked by the Jaff ransomware:

.xlsx .acd .pdf .pfx .crt .der .cad .dwg .MPEG .rar .veg .zip .txt .jpg .doc .wbk .mdb .vcf .docx .ics .vsc .mdf .dsr .mdi .msg .xls .ppt .pps .obd .mpd .dot .xlt .pot .obt .htm .html .mix .pub .vsd .png .ico .rtf .odt .3dm .3ds .dxf .max .obj 7z .cbr .deb .gz .rpm .sitx .tar .tar .gz .zipx .aif .iff .m3u .m4a .mid .key .vib .stl .psd .ova .xmod .wda .prn .zpf .swm .xml .xlsm .par .tib .waw .001 .002 .003 . .004 .005 .006 .007 .008 .009 .010 .contact .dbx .jnt .mapimail .oab .ods .ppsm .pptm .prf .pst .wab .1cd .3g2 .7ZIP .accdb .aoi .asf .asp .aspx .asx .avi .bak .cer .cfg .class .config .css .csv .db .dds .fif .flv .idx .js .kwm .laccdb .idf .lit .mbx .md .mlb .mov .mp3 .mp4 .mpg .pages .php .pwm .rm .safe .sav .save .sql .srt .swf .thm .vob .wav .wma .wmv .xlsb .aac .ai .arw .c .cdr .cls .cpi .cpp .cs .db3 .docm .dotm .dotx .drw .dxb .eps .fla .flac .fxg .java .m .m4v .pcd .pct .pl .potm .potx .ppam .ppsx .ps .pspimage .r3d .rw2 .sldm .sldx .svg .tga .wps .xla .xlam .xlm .xltm .xltx .xlw .act .adp .al .bkp .blend .cdf .cdx .cgm .cr2 .dac .dbf .dcr .ddd .design .dtd .fdb .fff .fpx .h .iif .indd .jpeg .mos .nd .nsd .nsf .nsg .nsh .odc .odp .oil .pas .pat .pef .ptx .qbb .qbm .sas7bdat .say .st4 .st6 .stc .sxc .sxw .tlg .wad .xlk .aiff .bin .bmp .cmt .dat .dit .edb .flvv .gif .groups .hdd .hpp .log .m2ts .m4p .mkv .ndf .nvram .ogg .ost .pab .pdb .pif .qed .qcow .qcow2 .rvt .st7 .stm .vbox .vdi .vhd .vhdx .vmdk .vmsd .vmx .vmxf .3fr .3pr .ab4 .accde .accdt .ach .acr .adb .srw .st5 .st8 .std .sti .stw .stx .sxd .sxg .sxi .sxm .tex .wallet .wb2 .wpd .x11 .x3f .xis .ycbcra .qbw .qbx .qby .raf .rat .raw .rdb .rwl .rwz .s3db .sd0 .sda .sdf .sqlite .sqlite3 .sqlitedb .sr .srf .oth .otp .ots .ott .p12 .p7b .p7c .pdd .pem .plus_muhd .plc .pptx .psafe3 .py .qba .qbr .myd .ndd .nef .nk .nop .nrw .ns2 .ns3 .ns4 .nwb .nx2 .nxl .nyf .odb .odf .odg .odm .ord .otg .ibz .iiq .incpas .jpe .kc2 .kdbx .kdc .kpdx .lua .mdc .mef .mfw .mmw .mny .moneywell .mrw .des .dgc .djvu .dng .drf .dxg .eml .erbsql .erd .exf .ffd .fh .fhd .gray .grey .gry .hbk .ibank .ibd .cdr4 .cdr5 .cdr6 .cdrw .ce1 .ce2 .cib .craw .crw .csh .csl .db_journal .dc2 .dcs .ddoc .ddrw .ads .agdl .ait .apj .asm .awg .back .backup .backupdb .bank .bay .bdb .bgt .bik .bpw .cdr3 .as4 .tif .asp .hdr .iso.

Images 16-17: Jaff ransomware victim payment page and admin panel on the Tor hidden website.
Images 16-17: Jaff ransomware victim payment page and admin panel on the Tor hidden website.

Assessment

Flashpoint analysts continue to monitor the cybercriminal syndicate behind Jaff ransomware. These actors utilize the Necurs rootkit infections as a spam bot to deliver email spam with malicious attachments. Flashpoint assesses with moderate confidence that the threat actors who once favored Locky have now likely switched to using Jaff ransomware.

This Jaff syndicate remains one of the most active cybercriminal groups within the cybercrime landscape. Virtually every Russian-language cybercrime gang has an informal rule prohibiting the discussion of criminal activity directed against Russian nationals and other residents of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) in order to avoid being targeted by Russian law enforcement. With the influx of press releases from Russian law enforcement about the arrest of major cybercrime gangs, security concerns remain a constant variable in the calculation of risk on the part of Russian-speaking cybercriminals. The Jaff actors also continue to avoid targeting any Russian-language victims via specific Windows API queries. This further supports the hypothesis that cybercriminals utilizing Jaff likely operate in a Russian-speaking country.

Mitigation

One possible Jaff ransomware mitigation strategy involves changing the machine’s language to Russian. One of the steps the ransomware takes is checking the language on the machine via the GetSystemDefaultLangID and GetUserDefaultLangID API. If Jaff detects that the language on the machine is set to Russian, it automatically terminates itself.

Organizations should continue to proactively collect indicators of compromise (IOCs) relevant to ongoing ransomware campaigns, as some variants, such as Jaff, continue to progress dynamically by leveraging discovered IOCs for counter-defensive procedures. As ransomware threats continue to evolve, it is crucial to develop and maintain good security hygiene, including robust patch and vulnerability management, data encryption, data backups, and vigorous user-access management controls.

Attachments & Downloads

To download the Jaff Ransomware indicators of compromise (IOCs), please click here.

Sources

https://www.flashpoint-intel.com/blog/necurs-dating-scam 
https://www.cert.pl/en/news/single/necurs-hybrid-spam-botnet

Flashpoint Intelligence Brief

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up-to-date on our latest research, news, and events