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Security

Recent password-sniffing hack targets hotel Wi-Fi in Europe

A recent implementation of the EternalBlue exploit behind the WannaCry outbreak targets travelers in Europe and the Middle East.

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Aaron Robinson/CNET

Yet another reminder about the dangers of using public Wi-Fi, security consulting firm FireEye reports that it's uncovered a phishing-based cyberattack aimed at people staying at hotels in Europe and the Middle East. 

The attack uses a combination of an old standby -- an infected document -- and the latest tools, including Wi-Fi sniffing and the Microsoft SMB exploit EternalBlue (made famous by WannaCry). According to FireEye, Russian-based APT28 hackers have deployed attempts to collect passwords sent over the network. That's one of the groups associated with the DNC attack during the 2016 US election cycle. However, FireEye hasn't yet found any examples of stolen credentials in the locations where it says this specific attack has occurred.

When a user opens the infected document, it runs a macro that deploys code which infiltrates the hotel's network. It then spreads across networks via EternalBlue and spoofs pages the user brings up to collect usernames and passwords. 

The process is more complicated than that, of course. You can get more detail from our sister size ZDNET's coverage, and yet more detail from the FireEye report.