Researchers at the information security company Nozomi said that the botnet is conducting a new large-scale Glupteba campaign, which began in June 2022 and is still ongoing.
In December 2021, Google managed to cause significant damage to the botnet's activities, as well as file a lawsuit against two Russian citizens who were in charge of Glupteba. Last month, a US court ruled in favor of the tech giant.
Glupteba continues to use the blockchain in the same way, so analysts scanned the entire blockchain to find hidden C&C server domains.
Experts studied 1,500 Glupteba samples uploaded to VirusTotal to extract wallet addresses and decrypt transaction payload data using malware-related keys.
Nozomi's investigation revealed 15 bitcoin addresses used in 4 Glupteba campaigns, the last of which started in June 2022 and is still ongoing. This campaign uses more bitcoin addresses than previous operations, making the botnet even more resilient. The most productive bitcoin address had 11 transactions and 1197 samples, and its last activity was recorded on November 8, 2022.
In addition, the number of hidden TOR services used as C&C servers has increased 10 times compared to the 2021 campaign due to a similar reservation approach. Nozomi also reports that botnet operators registered many new Glupteba domains on November 22.
The Glupteba botnet is back and more destructive as well as more resilient, creating a large number of fallback addresses to resist infrastructure takeover by researchers and law enforcement.