Fidelity bank banner UBA banner
Cybercriminals cash in on bitcoin craze

By Daniel Howley on 13/12/2017

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+

Views: 887


Bitcoin (BTC-USD) is on fire. The cryptocurrency has jumped thousands of dollars in value in the past few weeks, and everyone seems to want to get a piece of that sweet, sweet pie. Including, naturally, cybercriminals.

Yes, online crooks are using every trick in the book to exploit the crypto craze. From stealing usernames and passwords to installing malware on users’ computers, cybercriminals are working to get their hands on cryptocurrency in any way they can.

“There definitely is a gold rush approach, and I guess criminals are kind of cashing in on that,” said Raj Samani, chief scientist at McAfee.

And to do that they’ll hijack your computer to make money for themselves.

Stealing your information

Bitcoin isn’t exactly new. Its popularity might be spiking now along with its value, but the cryptocurrency has been around since 2009. Which naturally means it’s been the target of cybercriminals for quite some time.

One of the more popular types of bitcoin-related cybercrime involves using keyloggers, programs that can see what you type on your keyboard, to steal users’ login information for their bitcoin wallets. As Symantec’s Candid Wueest explains, victims accidentally download such keyloggers via infected email attachments, which install themselves on their computers.

“From that point they would just monitor for any bitcoin transaction or any bitcoin wallets that you have, and try to steal the passwords,” he said.

Here’s how this scheme worked recently: A piece of malware known as Trickbot began spoofing the popular cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase.com’s login page. The software works by redirecting you from the real Coinbase.com to a page that looks similar, but captures your login information.

That’s not the only devious behavior this malware is capable of, according to Wueest — it can also mine bitcoin and other forms of cryptocurrency using your own computer.

Mining on your time

That’s where technologies like browser-based miners come into play. Browser-based crypto miners allow for site owners to run a Javascript on a person’s computer whenever they visit a particular site. That script then uses your computer’s CPU to help mine currencies like Monero (XMR-USD).

The software itself isn’t designed to harm your computer. Sites like Coinhive even indicate the script could be used by publishers and webpage owners to generate revenue lost through the increased use of ad blockers. It’s not a bad idea, either. That is, when you’re told that it’s actually running on your machine.

See, not all Monero miners or sites will tell you they are operating in the background, sucking up precious system resources, which can slow your computer to a halt. What’s more, Monero miners are only supposed to run on your computer while you’re on the site that uses the script. That’s not always the case, though, as some will generate a browser window that then hides on your desktop to keep sucking up your computer’s resources.

“From September to October we actually saw a 10 times, or 10 fold, increase of those mining tools being detected on our customer’s [computers] that use our software,” explained Symantec’s (SYMC) Wueest. “10 times more in October. And in November it’s again, 3 times more. So now we are actually at 33,000 detections per day that we see globally.”

Dragging you down

To be sure, these kinds of mining malware tools aren’t as nefarious as something like ransomware, which locks down your computer until you either erase your hard drive or pay a ransom. But they do their own kind of damage.

Some miners are designed to remain hidden by using a smaller amount of your PC’s processing power, which you’re not likely to notice when doing something like opening a web browser. Start using more resource-intensive programs, though, and you’ll see some slowdown.

Other kinds of miners push your computer to the max right out of the gate, which will slow your machine to a crawl. For large businesses that run huge numbers of servers, though, the extra load can put a bit of a dent in their bottom line due to the power needed to run such operations.

“For organisations running multiple computers and server farms and so on and so forth, that can be a significant cost,” McAfee’s Samani said.

Beating back the bots

So how do you fight back against these kinds of threats? Well, as always, your best bet is to ensure that your computer is running the latest software updates. And don’t think you’re safe because you own a Mac. Instances of this kind of malware have been detected on those, too.

And of course, make sure you’re running some kind of security software. Yes, it can be annoying, but it’s well worth dealing with the hassle of updating that software in order to keep your computer safe. (Yahoo Finance)

Source News Express

Posted 13/12/2017 11:19:57 AM

 

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

You may also like...
Nigerian kills Nigerian in South Africa

Customs urges FG to review forex policy as...

Ghanaian landlord threatens US Government over fake embassy...

FG moves to bring culture, tourism sectors into...

CBN slams heavy sanctions on Diamond Bank, 3...

Sea pirates strike in Port-Harcourt, kill 4 policemen...

Fashola grants excision approvals to 230 Lagos communities...

NUJ bans chapels without elected officers from SEC...

Rivers APC to EFCC: ‘Probe how Wike allegedly...

$41 million private jet declared missing

A great chunk of N120bn Aviation Bailout Fund...

Army recovers list of names of Boko Haram...

 

Latest News FRSC job seeker collapses, dies Ex-president’s son detained over fraud CBN warns of another looming recession Osun election: PDP calls for resignation of INEC Chairman and Amina Zakari Bill Cosby sentenced to three to 10 years in jail for sexual assault PDP ready to wrest power from APC, says R-APC former National Chairman Buba Galadima Toni Kan and partner sell sabinews.com in landmark deal FG kick-starts 58th Independence Anniversary Celebration with photo exhibition PDP heading for self-destruction in Kogi East, youths warn Osun rerun: Fayemi leads APC leaders to Omisore’s residence Miracle in America: Paralysed people walk again Nigeria's population will hit 450 million by 2050 — International consultant

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (397,499 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (377,289 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (309,134 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (251,018 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (232,773 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (221,853 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (200,496 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (182,041 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (166,122 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (163,592 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (158,472 views) Gunmen kill ASP, 2 other police officers in vain bid to kidnap Rivers PDP chieftain (147,108 views)

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (63) Business & Economy (3,630) Business Verdict (52) Columnists (933) Complaints & Requests (94) Enterprise & Opportunities (207) Entertainment (548) Features (653) Global Business Monitor (301) International (2,436) Interview (165) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (144) News (39,151) Opinion (1,111) Pidgin (11) Politics (6,759) Religion (873) Sports (1,708) Stock Watch (34) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

NLNG Expression of Interest banner

CBN banner

Firstmobile banner

 

 

NEWS EXPRESS TV

Anthony Joshua vs Alexander Povetkin: Highlights

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera

Advertisement