Another day, another cryptocurrency mining malware report.
As cryptocurrency and blockchain become popular, so does ways to exploit resources to take advantage of it. Take for example the bitcoin text message scam that effectively installs a mining software on your phone. Then there’s the mining malware that gets distributed by clicking a link shared by affected users via Facebook Messenger.
Cryptocurrency Mining Malware Resting on Pirated Software
Kaspersky Lab recently reported a growing number of pirated software that, when installed, will also silently install a cryptocurrency mining software on the infected computer.
What it does
- Remotely mine cryptocurrency on the victim’s computer
- Remotely set a destination wallet to where the mined coins will be sent
- The computer can even be used to take part in mining pools.
Coin mining is a resource-intensive application. That is the reason why only powerful computers are used for mining activities. Using a relatively low-powered computer to mine something like bitcoin will eat up the computer’s resources. This might render it unable to perform tasks like opening Google Chrome or a document.
Also, as it is resource intensive, one could suffer from higher electric bills. That’s something very unfortunate. A higher Meralco bill especially during the holidays?
How to avoid this malware?
- Kaspersky has advised the public to avoid downloading illegal software as you don’t know which one actually contains the malware.
- Of course, the activity can make you also prone to other viruses that can infect parts or your entire computer
Finally, if by any chance you keep your desktop wallets and private keys on the infected computer, if the virus corrupts them, then you have no way of accessing your coins resting in those wallets anymore. I’ve heard stories like this before so you better keep your computers and wallets safe.
What if my computer got infected by the mining malware?
You must find an antivirus and malware scanner that can get rid of it.
What if my wallet got corrupted by the malware/virus?
Then you should have a backup code of your wallet somewhere. Like a copy on your google drive, a copy of your private and public keys on a piece of paper. If not, then yes, all the coins will be lost.
It is highly important to keep the computer you use to access your coins to be free from viruses, malware, or any other things that could corrupt your wallets, docs, and files related to cryptocurrency. By now, your 1 bitcoin could be worth anything from ₱500K to ₱1 million. Keep it safe or stand to lose all those coins forever.