The number of hidden mining cases increased by 163%


  • The number of cases of hidden mining has grown significantly

  • Cryptojacking viruses are sent to victims via email

  • Malware disguises itself as crypto wallets, QR code generators, and ad blockers

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This is evidenced by data from a study by Symantec. In the second quarter of this year, this figure increased by 163%.

The rise in the price of crypto coins affected the activity of hackers

According to researchers, the main reason for the activation of hackers who are engaged in cryptojacking is the rise in the cost of cryptocurrencies. In particular, cybercriminals are most often infecting computers in the hope of mining BTC and Monero. The increase in the value of these coins coincides with an increase in the number of cryptojacking cases..

Rise of cases of cryptojacking

“When countries around the world began to loosen restrictions on isolation from COVID-19, malware distributors also resumed their operations at full capacity. May and June saw a significant increase in the number of malware attacks blocked by Symantec, a division of Broadcom (NASDAQ: AVGO). In total, Symantec blocked more than 60 million infection attempts in the second quarter of 2020, which is 74.6 percent more than in the previous quarter, ”the study said..

TWIM Ep22 Pt3: Browser-Based CryptoJacking Cases Increase To New Unseen Levels In 2020

Bitcoin cost in the first half of 2020
Monero price growth in the first half of 2020

According to the study, the most common spyware programs are:

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    The number of cases of hidden mining increased by 163%
  • Emotet (Trojan.Emotet);
  • Sodinokibi (Ransom. Sodinokibi);
  • Cobalt Strike (Backdoor.Cobalt);
  • Lokibot (Infostealer.Lokibot);

If we talk about the IP addresses of hackers, then the five leaders included countries such as the United States, China, Taiwan, Brazil and Russia. Most often, the virus was sent to the victim’s computer by mail. The most popular sender names remain admin, root, support and others. Therefore, users should be extremely careful when opening emails from such senders..

Cryptojacking viruses disguise themselves as programs

However, it is not always the case that virus software reaches the victim’s computer via email. In some cases, users independently download spyware to their device. The fact is that many Trojans are skillfully disguised as ad blockers or crypto wallets..

For example, analysts of the AdGuard system have discovered 295 malicious ad blocker extensions that not only embed advertisements in Google and Bing search results, but can also become conductors of the cryptojacking virus..

Previously, hackers disguised data-stealing malware as a MetaMask wallet. A malicious clipper was used by cybercriminals to steal user data: addresses and keys from bitcoin and ether wallets. In some cases, the virus replaced the bitcoin wallet address in such a way that its initial and final characters remained the same, and part of the code changed. As a result, crypto coins were sent straight to the scammers. It was extremely difficult to prove the fact of theft, since the program adjusted to almost any wallet address, and it was almost impossible to find differences in the original address and the address of the scammers.

Also, hackers used QR code generators to steal addresses of bitcoin wallets. The criminals created nine sites at once, which offered users to generate a QR code for free to send funds. As you know, today this technology has gained popularity in society. Now users do not need to enter the full address of the bitcoin wallet to transfer coins. It is enough to read the encrypted QR code using the phone camera. Nine websites generated QR codes for five different Bitcoin addresses, for which funds totaling over 7 BTC ($ 45,000) were received – most likely from deceived users.


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The number of hidden mining cases increased by 163%
The number of hidden mining cases increased by 163%
The number of hidden mining cases increased by 163%

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