A new hacking tool is flying throughout the online crypto community in an attempt to install mining malware in relation to cryptocurrency. The news was confirmed by researchers at the security intel firm Trend Micro on 20th Feb.
The hacking tool was detected at the end of January and is a combination of extant threats which were primarily targeted at Windows users, MIMIKATZ and RADMIN.
The blog post starts off by saying:
“Between the last week of January to February, we noticed an increase in hack tool installation attempts that dropped seemingly random files into the Windows directory. Initially appearing unrelated, analysis showed the final payload to be a Monero (XMR) cryptocurrency-mining malware variant[.]”
Trend Micro is a multinational security firm which is headquartered in Japan. The firm was founded in 1988 by Eva Chen, Steve Chang and Jenny Chang and turns over trillions on a yearly basis.
On the latest threat, Trend Micro said that:
“Using MIMIKATZ and RADMIN for propagation while exploiting critical vulnerabilities enables malicious actors to spread malware with worm-like behavior to target specific systems in industries without being immediately detected… Users are advised to regularly download patches from legitimate vendors as soon as they are released.”
This is news that might not come as a surprise to a lot of crypto enthusiasts who have faced a influx of XMR mining malware threats over the course of last year.
On June 11th last year, reports surfaced saying that around five percent of the total XMR in circulation was thought to have been mined by this kind of malware. According to the research, the malicious mining was done by using other users’ computers processing power in order to mine for cryptocurrencies, without their permission (also known as cryptojacking).
Fraudsters seem to always lean towards Monero because of its private and anonymous nature. Not to mention that it is relatively easy to use for mining it on consumer-grade devices such as laptops and smartphones. Before mass adoption is achieved, Monero’s issue will need to be fixed however going around this won’t be easy. Hacks, fraud and theft are three things that are keeping the crypto space from mainstream adoption.
Saying that things like last weeks bull run are keeping people enthused in the crypto space and if we see more action like it then, cryptocurrencies mass adoption could be achieved sooner rather than later.