News broke last week concerning a Monero mining malware found in a copy of the new Spider-Man: No Way Home movie. ReasonLabs detected this malware circulating on torrent sites, which then diverts the user’s computer to mine the “privacy coin” Monero.
Our latest research has discovered the “wallet” belonging to this attacker, possibly one of many. We believe that it is connected to a pool of miners – the chances are that the attacker has created many different accounts,in order to make this attack as lucrative as possible
Unfortunately, it is very easy to enact a coin miner attack these days – there’s a public repository of code any developer could replicate and use to create malware. Because it’s easy to do, it’s becoming more popular. You don’t need to be a genius – you just need to have some knowledge of coding, and bad ethics!
Furthermore, unless it is detected initially, it’s very difficult to remove this malware manually.
Why are miners so bad for you?
❇️The virus encourages you to click, and then finds a way to continue running and mining coins, even when you’re away from your computer. So, even if you aren’t in front of your machine, your computer will be working hard for nothing – leading to more energy consumption.
❇️ As well as not being eco-friendly, this can badly affect the battery on a laptop or, in extreme cases, could potentially make your PC overheat.
❇️ A badly implemented miner could substantially slow down your machine.
❇️ A user may mistakenly think it’s the internet connection that is slower, and not realize that it’s the miner’s doing. Even watching a YouTube video could become a problem.
❇️ Users may encounter system crashes and disruption of regular operations.
❇️ It is highly dangerous to have a malicious application running on your computer. It can lead to much more severe cases of malware.
Our cybersecurity experts have a few simple tips to avoid cryptojacking:
✅ Install an excellent antivirus that will detect these forms of malware (for antivirus questions you can contact our support team).
✅ Maintain and update your software and operating system so that you are less susceptible to vulnerabilities.
✅ Be wary when downloading files from websites. Only use sites you trust – you can always check for authentic website certification.
✅ When downloading video or audio files – make sure the file extension is of the expected format (e.g. .mp4) and not of an executable format (e.g. .exe).
If you’re worried you may have already encountered this malware, there are a few simple ways you can check your device – see our article How to Mitigate the Spider-Miner Attack: Our Step-By-Step Guide for a comprehensive method of checking whether your device has been infected.
If you’re unsure how to go about detecting or deleting this type of malware, we recommend contacting our ReasonLabs Customer Support for more advice and practical help.