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  • Writer's pictureNexix Security Labs

What is Cryptojacking and How does it work?


Cryptojacking is a sort of cybercrime in which a criminal secretly generates cryptocurrency using the computing power of a victim. This usually happens when a victim unintentionally installs a program that contains harmful scripts, allowing the cybercriminal to gain access to their computer or other Internet-connected devices, such as by clicking on an unfamiliar link in an e-mail or visiting an infected website. The criminal then uses programs known as 'coin miners' to create or 'mine' cryptocurrencies.

Because these are digital currencies, all that is required to produce them are computer programs and computational power. Monero is a type of cryptocurrency that is largely mined on personal computers.

Why is this a concern?

Cryptojacking may appear to be a harmless crime because the only thing taken is the victim's computer's processing capacity. However, the use of computational resources for this unlawful purpose is done, without the victim's knowledge or consent, for the profit of the criminal, who is making currency illegally. Cybercriminals regard this as a lucrative crime because a significant number of infected devices create a substantial amount of money.

The primary impact of cryptojacking is performance-related, but it can also raise prices for individuals and organizations affected because currency mining consumes a lot of electricity and processing resources.

Signs that you could be a victim of cryptojacking

  • A significant slowdown in device performance

  • Overheating of device batteries

  • Devices shutting down due to shortage of available processing power

  • Reduction in productivity of your device or router

  • Unexpected increases in electricity bills

Some prevention measures

  • Continuously monitor resources on your computer like processing speed, power usage, etc.

  • Use browser extensions that are designed to block coin mining

  • Use more privacy focused ad blockers

  • Download and install the latest software updates and security patches for your operating system and applications- especially those concerning web browsers

  • Block pages that are known to deliver cryptojacking scripts

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