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Obfuscated Coinhive shortlink reveals larger mining operation

During the past several months, in-browser mining has continued to affect a large number of websites, predominantly relying on Coinhive’s infamous API. We documented several campaigns on this blog, in particular Drupalgeddon, where attackers are taking advantage of vulnerabilities in popular Content Management Systems (CMS) to compromise websites and push payloads both client- and … [Read more...]

The state of malicious cryptomining

While cryptocurrencies have been around for a long time and used for legitimate purposes, online criminals have certainly tarnished their reputation. Unfortunately, the same benefits offered by these decentralized and somewhat anonymous digital currencies were quickly abused to extort money, as was the case during the various ransomware outbreaks we’ve witnessed in the last few years. As the value … [Read more...]

RIG exploit kit campaign gets deep into crypto craze

There isn’t a day that goes by without a headline about yet another massive spike in Bitcoin valuation, or a story about someone mortgaging their house to purchase the hardware required to become a serious cryptocurrency miner. If many folks are thinking about joining the ‘crypto craze’ movement, they may be surprised to learn that they already have. We’ve documented … [Read more...]

How cryptocurrency mining works: Bitcoin vs. Monero

Ever wondered why websites that are mining in the background don’t mine for the immensely hot Bitcoin, but for Monero instead? We can explain that. As there are different types of cryptocurrencies, there are also different types of mining. After providing you with some background information about blockchain [1],[2] and cryptocurrency, we’ll explain how the mining aspect of Bitcoin works. And how … [Read more...]

Persistent drive-by cryptomining coming to a browser near you

Since our last blog on drive-by cryptomining, we are witnessing more and more cases of abuse involving the infamous Coinhive service that allows websites to use their visitors to mine the Monero cryptocurrency. Servers continue to get hacked with mining code, and plugins get hijacked and affect hundreds or even thousands of sites at once. One of the major drawbacks of web-based cryptomining we … [Read more...]