Conversation Overflow' Cyberattacks Bypass AI Security to Target Execs

A novel cyberattack method called "Conversation Overflow" has recently surfaced, showcasing cybercriminals' attempts to bypass AI- and ML-enabled security platforms through sophisticated techniques. This attack tactic, analyzed by SlashNext researchers, is observed in multiple incidents, indicating a deliberate effort to evade advanced cybersecurity defenses.

Unlike traditional security measures that rely on detecting known malicious signatures, AI and ML algorithms used in modern security platforms focus on identifying deviations from known good communication patterns. In the "Conversation Overflow" attack, cybercriminals craft phishing emails with two distinct sections: a visible part that urges recipients to take action, such as clicking a link or providing sensitive information, and a concealed portion containing benign text. This hidden text is strategically designed to mimic genuine conversation, thus deceiving AI and ML algorithms by appearing as "known good" communication.

Analyst Comments:
The ultimate goal of this tactic is to trick security controls into categorizing the entire email as safe, allowing it to bypass security filters and reach users' inboxes. Once inside, cybercriminals can leverage the email conversation to launch further attacks, such as requesting reauthentication or prompting users to provide login credentials, leading to potential credential theft.

Suggested Corrections:
Stephen Kowski, a field CTO at SlashNext, emphasizes the significance of these attacks, particularly their targeting of upper management and executives. He notes that cybercriminals are constantly evolving their strategies to exploit weaknesses in new and highly effective cybersecurity technologies, such as AI-driven security platforms. Kowski advises security teams to respond by actively running their own evaluations and testing with tools to find "unknown unknowns" in their environments.