Beware of the Crypto Mining Malware PowerGhost: Kaspersky warns
Kaspersky Lab researchers have found a new crypto-currency miner, PowerGhost. The malware mainly targets corporate networks in several regions, mostly in South America.
The malware “is capable of stealthily establishing itself in a system and spreading across large corporate networks infecting both workstations and servers,” Kaspersky reveals.
PowerGhost is a form of fileless malware that utilizes a system’s native processes to hijack a computer. Once installed on a computer, the software mines an undisclosed cryptocurrency. According to sources, the malware has been spreading on corporate networks in India, Brazil, Colombia and Turkey.
Kaspersky said, “It appears the growing popularity and rates of cryptocurrencies have convinced the bad guys of the need to invest in new mining techniques – as our data demonstrates, miners are gradually replacing ransomware Trojans.”
Principal security researcher David Emm agreed, telling ZDNet,”PowerGhost raises new concerns about crypto-mining software. The miner we examined indicates that targeting consumers is not enough for cybercriminals anymore – threat actors are now turning their attention to enterprises too. Cryptocurrency mining is set to become a huge threat to the business community.”
Earlier this month, cybersecurity experts of Kaspersky Lab have reported that cybercriminals have stolen more than 21,000 in Ethereum (ETH) worth around $10 million through social engineering methodology over the past year.
As per the reports, from early 2018 cybercriminals have triggered more than a hundred thousand alarms on security software in association with cryptocurrencies.
Kaspersky Lab reported that scammers used fake websites and phishing emails that contain an e-wallet number to trick their targets out of money. Tricksters single out investors who are interested in Initial Coin Offerings (ICO). The criminals have stolen more than $25,000 worth of crypto by posting a fake offer on a Twitter account alleged to be associated with the ICO though non regulated channels like Switches ICO.
The fabricated “cryptocurrency giveaway ” scam is another notable social engineering scam where victims are promised to give a higher payout of the same cryptocurrency later in return for a small sum of cryptocurrency collected now. For this scam, fake social media accounts pretending to be those of well-known personalities like business magnate Elon Musk and Telegram founder Pavel Durov used to popularise cryptocurrency giveaway.
Illegal crypto mining and hijacking is the current trend which has been rapidly growing in popularity among the web’s criminal activities. As this trend increase, corporates will be at the greatest risk.
Image via Shutterstock
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