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Malware Is Being Loaded On Computers To Mine For CryptoCurrencies

By September 26, 2017June 22nd, 2022Cybersecurity

Since the development of BitCoin, cyrptocurrencies have seen a tremendous surge in popularity. In fact, in recent months, the value of all the major cryptocurrencies currently available has spiked, fueling even greater interest and speculation.

That growing interest is also fueling something else: the marked increase of currency mining software clandestinely installed on an unwitting user’s machine.

This is a very different kind of attack.

Traditionally, a hacker will attack your machine in order to breach your network and gain access to sensitive company data.

What a cryptocurrency miner wants, though, is your processing power.

The way it works is this. All the cryptocurrencies currently in the wild today use some variant of the “mining” concept to create more of their currency. People can download software, install it on their machines and at every X-interval, a new unit of the currency will be born, and credited to the miner who “unearthed” it.

This, of course, is where your PC or other internet connected device enters the picture, because why stop at just the machines owned and controlled by the hackers themselves? If they can infect 100,000 or more computers and put them all to work, quietly mining for currency, then that’s money in the bank for them.

This is the reason we’re now seeing a dramatic rise in such attacks.

In 2013, there were less than half a million such attacks over the course of the entire year.

By last year, that number had risen to nearly two million, and so far in 2017, the number is already at 1.65 million and at the current rate of infection, 2017 stands to handily beat out last year’s total.

While not as directly threatening as other forms of attacks, such an infection can dramatically degrade the overall performance of your network, so it’s certainly not something you’d want to let stand, which means your IT department has yet another threat to keep a watchful eye out for.

Jason Manteiga

Jason J. Manteiga, Vice President of Olmec Systems, has been part of the company for over the past 20 years. He believes that having a great work environment and supportive team, is the ultimate key to success. Since being in the IT realm for over 25 years, Jason, along with Olmec Systems, has been on the Inc. 5000 “List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies” and Channel Futures MSP 501 “Top Managed Service Providers in North America,” along with other awards and nominations. Jason earned his Bachelor Degree in Information Systems from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He also holds certifications in Microsoft MCSE, VMWare VCP, and Cisco CCNA. In his spare time, Jason is a contributor for The Center for Social & Legal Research (Privacy Exchange) and a member of the Morris County Chamber of Commerce. His hobbies include cycling and kayaking. He currently lives in New Jersey with his wife, two daughters and son.