AXLocker, a new ransomware variant is encrypting victims’ files and also attempting to steal data by enabling a Discord account takeover (ATO). Before extorting the victim, the ransomware encrypts specific file extensions with AES.
However, it steals the Discord tokens used by the platform to authenticate users when they enter their credentials to log in to an account before encrypting.
When a user logs into Discord with their credentials, the platform returns a user authentication token that has been saved on the computer. This token can then be used to log in as the user or to make API requests that retrieve account information. When ransomware is executed, it will target specific file extensions and exclude specific folders.
This allows threat actors to hijack these accounts for further fraud and malware propagation. The messaging platform is popular in the gaming and cryptocurrency communities, but it is also a hotbed of malicious activity.
AXLocker will display a pop-up window containing the ransom note after sending the stolen Discord tokens to an external server and encrypting the victim’s files, with a timer ticking until the decryption key is deleted.
AXLocker uses the AES algorithm to encrypt files, but it does not append a filename extension to the encrypted files, so they appear with their original names.
Then, using a webhook URL, AXLocker sends a victim ID, system details, browser data, and Discord tokens to the threat actors’ Discord channel.
AxLocker will scan DiscordLocal Storageleveldb, discordcanaryLocal Storageleveldb, discordptbleveldb, Opera SoftwareOpera StableLocal Storageleveldb, GoogleChromeUser DataDefaultLocal Storageleveldb, BraveSoftwareBrave-BrowserUser DataDefaultLocal Storageleveldb, and YandexYandexBrowserUser DataDefaultLocal Storagelevel
Victims are eventually served a pop-up window containing the ransom note, informing them that their data has been encrypted and instructing them on how to contact the threat actor to purchase a decryptor. The victims have 48 hours to contact the attackers and provide their victim ID.
The sources for this piece include an article in BleepingComputer.