A new form of malware – cryptojacking – is gradually crawling out from the niche into the mainstream. With the growing usage of cryptocurrencies, the malware is becoming a threat to individuals as well as companies. Let’s know how to detect cryptojacking attack.
But what exactly is cryptojacking? What makes it so hard to detect and prevent? Let us determine, but better first understand what it means.
Cryptojacking is a tactic by cybercriminals to use a victim’s machine to mine for cryptocurrencies without their approval. Though they do not generally steal data from the infringed device, they do slow down the machine and drain the battery.
How to detect cryptojacking attack
Being an unconventional malware, cryptojacking script is hard to identify. Though a few signs do indicate your device may have become a victim of a malicious script.
The first rule, all the anti-virus tools and scanning software on your device count almost nothing in your efforts to detect crypto-jacking script. It is so because many of these scripts are fully legitimate, making them undetectable by signature-based cyber-security software.
What you need to do is to keep a vigil on your systems to find if they are working harder than they usually do. Mining is an activity that takes a toll on the CPU. If it is overheating, it might be a sign of infection. If you are someone running an enterprise, the number of employee complaints about the performance of their machines might suddenly increase or your data may demonstrate a jump in the CPU wastage.
Prevention from cryptojacking
There is nothing extraordinary in the steps to prevent cryptojacking. Rather, just being careful to prevent more traditional types of cybercrime will protect you.
Training against phishing-type attacks
Phishing has been used to steal crucial user data such as credit card number and login credentials. What the attacker does is to masquerade as a trusted resource and trick the victim into opening a mail or text message that has a malicious link, which leads to the installation of malware. You need to train your staff regarding the dangers phishing-type attacks pose. If they are familiar with how such an attack is launched, they would be better able to guess.
Improving browser security
A good chunk of crypto-jacking attacks are executed via users’ web browsers. Augmenting your web browser security will decrease the chances of the attacker getting a breakthrough. Get a browser that has an in-built security layer and uses an effective ad blocker to suck the sting off such scripts. Using a quality VPNS also helps improve browser security. There are add-ons that can block such malicious scripts effectively.
Keep a check on personal devices
In case your staff works on their own devices, use device management software to manage the installations on them. You also need to keep the software updated. Instruct your employees to use safe browsers and apps as this offers the first line of security.
Use anti-cryptomining extensions
You may install browser extensions to block crypto-mining scripts. Extensions like Anti miner, minerBlock, and No Coin are known for preventing such scripts from reaching your device.
Keep tabs on cryptojacking trends
Like all aspects related to technology, cryptomining code is also evolving. This makes it imperative that you keep a watch on the trends in cryptojacking to understand how the behavior of malicious scripts is changing. Comprehending the delivery mechanisms of such code will keep such threats at bay. In December 2020, a cryptomining botnet was found to add a bitcoin wallet address to the malicious code along with a URL for a wallet-checking API. Researchers concluded that the code was using this information to calculate an IP address and move on to infect more devices.
Set up a network monitoring solution
Cryptojacking is more likely to be detected in corporate houses compared to homes because the enterprises generally implement network monitoring. Consumer end-points, on the other hand, lack such systems. However, it is important to ensure that the networking monitor tool deployed has the capability to analyze the suspected scripts to detect accurately. An advanced AI solution might have the ability to analyze the data available and ward any threat.
Underestimating the damaging consequences of cryptojacking attacks will be a self-hitting mistake. Take it as a case of an attacker penetrating your security and accord utmost attention to its complete review. You may also get on board a company for auditing your security apparatus and coming up with recommendations. Expert assistance will certainly take cyber security on your ecosystem a level up.
Reach out to QuillAudits
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