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What is Cryptojacking and How to Prevent It?


As cryptocurrency enthusiasts, we visit a lot of websites related to the industry, but what many fail to be aware of is that there are plenty of threats able to harm our activity, without any notice. So far, we’ve talked about spoofing and wash trading, two of the most popular price manipulation techniques, and today we will talk about a more subtle threat, namely cryptojacking.

What is cryptojacking?

Cryptojacking represents an activity involving the unauthorized use of someone else’s computer in order to mine different cryptocurrencies. There are two important ways a hacker can manage to do that:

  • Persuading the victim to click on a malicious link in an email loading the crypto mining code
  • Infecting a website or online ad with JavaScript code auto-executing once loaded in the browser.

The danger with this threat is that the mining code works in the background without the victims suspecting anything when they normally use the PC or laptop. It is usual, though, to see the workstation operating with lags in execution, especially for older ones. People should be more aware of this threat, since cryptojacking continues to be popular among hackers, in particular, browser-based.

PowerGhost, Graboid, MinerGate, or BadShell are just three of the popular malware used to mine cryptocurrencies illicitly on other people’s computers. Considering the severity of this threat, it is important to talk about some of the ways to prevent it from occurring.

How to prevent cryptojacking?

One of the best ways to prevent cryptojacking is by installing an ad-blocker. Most will prevent cryptojacking scripts from running in the background. Secondly, it is important to keep systems updated and work only with subscription-based or license-based software. If you want more advanced measures, implementing network system monitoring to detect excessive resource utilization could be one idea. Also, it won’t be hard to check the Task Manager (for Windows) to see what apps are using CPU or memory power the most.

It is important to have educated end-users to prevent or notice any signs of infections. The cryptocurrency investor’s mindset is changing and the same should happen with all the retail individuals operating in the industry. Technology comes with downsides, but as long as strong prevention and protection measures are in place, the risk of something bad happening is very reduced. For more content on the malware used for cryptojacking, there’s plenty of information online on the topic.

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