Investigating NATO-Themed Phishing Lures With EclecticIQ Intelligence Center and Endpoint Response Tool



With cyberattacks such a common occurrence, analysts must be able to stay ahead of the curve by investigating files and indicators of compromise quickly and efficiently. The EclecticIQ Intelligence Center (IC) is the perfect tool to facilitate investigations like these. This post will describe how EclecticIQ’s Intelligence & Research analysts used the IC to investigate the potential maliciousness of files leveraging NATO-themed phishing lures, and how they operationalized this intelligence by feeding it into the EclecticIQ Endpoint Response (ER) security tool.

The Need for Targeted Collection: The Benelux Region’s Unique Concerns About Cyber Threats

If past attacks are any indicator of future risk, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg (collectively Benelux) region of Europe is an attractive target for cyber threat actors. A review of past cyberattacks targeting Benelux shows that the number of attacks targeting this region has grown in a way that is typical for what one might expect in a relatively connected, business-intense region. (1, 2) It is difficult to know the exact number of cyberattacks since many go unreported, but based on those that are reported, analysts note a few patterns. Most Belgium, Luxembourg, and The Netherlands-focused cyberattacks remain localized; they are severe enough to make news and to be disruptive by reducing or suspending services, but generally, the damage from attacks is contained. Often, individuals or assets in the region may be caught up in wide-reaching software vulnerabilities or supply chain issues, simply because they are part of an international network of users. Judging from news and press, cyberattacks were also typical in that they appear opportunistic with attackers pursuing any vulnerable target they find, regardless of industry; schools and universities, businesses, and government entities have been victimized in recent years. (3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)

DevOps Experience 2022

Defining Initial Collection Requirements: Identify and Sample Benelux-Based Potential Targets

To dig deeper into the Benelux cyber threat landscape, analysts developed a list of possible high-profile targets in those three countries; the list included government and…