Translated Ransomware Playbook Gives Rare Insight into Gang's Operation

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A leak of a purported tutorial from the Conti ransomware gang for turning compromised machines into ransomware beachheads provides a rare look inside the operations of a popular cybercriminal syndicate and highlights the tenuous relationships between groups in the cybercriminal ecosystem.

Threat experts at Cisco Talos this week provided a full English translation of the playbook, which came to light last month, allegedly after a disgruntled “affiliate” leaked the location of the server controlling compromised machines and more than 100MB of tools and documents. The playbook focuses on a number of popular tools — such as Cobalt Strike, Mimikatz, and PowerShell — and tells affiliates, low-level cybercriminals who infect systems for a cut of the profits, how to find exploits for common vulnerabilities.

Overall, the playbook gives an insight into the operations of a well-organized ransomware group, from searching for company revenue to methods of exfiltrating data, says Nick Biasini, global lead for outreach at Cisco

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