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Hackers are Targeting Cellphone Owners in South Africa to Mine Crypto

Hackers are Targeting Cellphone Owners in South Africa to Mine Crypto
Hackers are targeting cellphone owners in South Africa to illegally mine cryptocurrencies by installing malware on their victims’ devices, according to Riaan Badenhorst, managing director at Kaspersky Lab Africa.
Crypto Mining Malware is on the Rise
In 2018, crypto mining malware grew 4,000 percent globally according to US-based cyber security company McAfee as hackers shifted the focus from digital tokens to crypto mining due to the former’s price decline.
“[…| New crypto mining malware samples grew a stunning 629 percent to more than 2.9 million samples in Q1 2018. This trend continued in Q2 as total samples grew by 86 percent with more than 2.5 million new samples. By the end of the third quarter of [2018], it jumped to 4 million,” McAfee Labs observed .
How Hackers Mine Cryptocurrencies from Mobile Phones

Badenhorst noted that crypto-related crimes have surged in South Africa as hackers turn to cell phones and personal computers to illegally mine cryptocurrencies, according to a report by Business Insider.
A hacker will usually access a victim’s computer or cell phone through malicious links on email or websites. When clicked, these links then infect the device. For example, a way hackers are able to use someone’s phone to mine cryptocurrencies is through channels like Slack and Telegram where they provide malicious links that allegedly solve crypto issues.
A cell phone that is malware infected will be slow and owners will note increased energy use, overheating, and a surge in data usage.
With crypto mining malware , it takes a long time for victims to notice that their devices are infected while it also takes a long time for the hacker to make money. In contrast, crypto mining ransomware, which was popular in 2017, is easily noticed by the victim but the hacker makes more money in less time.
Staying Safe from Crypto Mining Attacks
Badenhorst advises anyone who suspects that their device has been attacked to update their software regularly and to avoid downloading software or clicking links from unknown sources.
You can also protect your personal devices by using an antivirus, securing your router with a strong password, and never ignoring your devices’ security updates.
Additionally, cellphone and computer owners can use browsers such as Opera, which protect them from crypto mining malware .
The post Hackers are Targeting Cellphone Owners in South Africa to Mine Crypto appeared first on BitcoinAfrica.io .

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