The popular Luminosity RAT has been shut down by authorities and its users have no access to it anymore.
In a joint operation, the law enforcement authorities from Australia, Europe, and North America have shut down a “hacking tool” called Luminosity Link RAT (Remote Access Trojan) also known as LuminosityLink. In the operation over a dozen agencies including Europol, UK’s South West Regional Organised Crime Unit and National Crime Agency (NCA) took part leading to the successful shut down of the sophisticated trojan.
Luminosity RAT allowed attackers to secretly infect a targeted device by disabling its anti-virus or anti-malware program, spy on the victim by monitoring their online activities, record every keystroke, watch them by enabling their webcam and steal data including login credentials.
In a press release, Europol said that Luminosity had over 8,600 users in more than 78 countries and its victims are also believed to be in thousands. Originally, the RAT started targeting victims in May 2015 while the authorities identified its presence in September 2016 on a computer system of a suspect arrested by investigators in Bristol, United Kingdom.
NCA has also seized over 100 devices and Internet accounts during the operation which are being analyzed by forensic experts.
According to IT security researchers at Kaspersky, Luminosity was also used by Nigerian hackers in their phishing campaign in which their prime targets were industrial companies. It should not come as a surprise since Luminosity’s developers sold it on a website for just £30 ($42 – €33).
Here, it is noteworthy that authorities shut down Luminosity in September 2017 but only shared the details of the operation now due to “operational reasons.” However, the good news is that the RAT is not functional and those who bought it cannot access it anymore.
According to Detective Inspector Ed Heath, head of the South West Regional Cyber Crime Unit “The sale and deployment of this hacking tool were uncovered following a single arrest and the subsequent forensic examination of the computer. “More than a year’s complex work with international policing partners led us to identify a large number of offenders.”
Luminosity might be history but there are thousands of RATs and malware targeting unsuspecting users around the world. Therefore, readers are advised to keep their system up to date, do not download files from an anonymous third-party store, avoid clicking the link and downloading attachment files sent by unknown senders.