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  • Michael Paulyn

Using High-Tech Point-of-Sale (PoS) Malware, Brazilian Prilex Hackers are Resurfacing

Brazilian hackers operating under the alias “Prilex” recently resurfaced after a year-long break, armed with some of the most high-tech point-of-sale malware designed to steal money using fraudulent purchases.

Researchers from the firm Kaspersky state that "the Prilex group has shown a high level of knowledge about credit and debit card transactions and how software used for payment processing works. This enables the attackers to keep updating their tools to find a way to circumvent the authorization policies, allowing them to perform their attacks."


This cyber criminal entourage got started by tapping into the ATM-focused malware attack scene in Brazil and much of South America. These types of attacks make a clone of a victim’s credit card and then proceed to steal funds from their account, all without them any the wiser.

However, as time has passed, Prilex has evolved into stealing funds more sophisticatedly, with no signs of slowing down. Currently, that’s using point-of-sale malware to intercept transaction communications from the electronic PIN pad that processes the transaction.


These events begin with a fake technician calling a company, stating their PoS software isn’t up to code and they must immediately update everything. In reality, the technician gains access to install this malware to ensure that all transactions are redirected from the legitimate connection to an entirely new one. Ultimately, the hackers make money hand over fist, and the victims are left holding the bill.


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