ESET researchers have discovered the first in-the-wild UEFI rootkit. Dubbed LoJax, the research team has shown that the Sednit operators used different components of the LoJax malware to target a few government organizations in the Balkans as well as in Central and Eastern Europe.
UEFI rootkits are widely viewed as extremely dangerous tools for implementing cyberattacks, as they are hard to detect and able to survive security measures such as operating system reinstallation and even a hard disk replacement. Some UEFI rootkits have been presented as proofs of concept; some are known to be at the disposal of (at least some) governmental agencies. However, no UEFI rootkit has ever been detected in the wild – until we discovered a campaign by the Sednit APT group that successfully deployed a malicious UEFI module on a victim’s system.