Is your computer being hijacked and making money for others?
Did you know that crypto “mining” is big business? Crypto hacking is even bigger. Crypto hacking is going on right now, all over the world. Some scammers sent you a link that looked so much like a real email, didn’t it? I mean heck, you are careful but you did click it, didn’t you? Yeah, and after you got nervous later on, you clicked off realizing it was a mistake but… it been weeks now and your computer is running just a little odd, isn’t it?
Do you notice the slow-downs a little? Sometimes it seems like priorities have been off, huh? Well, let’s have a chat about that, shall we?
Cryptocurrencies are digital fake money. They exist only online with no real form at all. They were created because people don’t trust their governments! What an odd idea, right? Well, ten years ago Bitcoin broke into the scene and then 2,000 others followed suit. Heck, the laws are loose and the money is free! Just hire a set of programmers, come up with a catchy name like Superman Coin or whatever (2,000 names out there now) and someone will buy it! I mean, who would not want anonymity when buying porno online right? Hence Porncoin. Wow.
Anyway, people use cryptocurrencies but hackers hack and hijack them. They steal it anyway they can. Electricity is kind of expensive, as are the super computers designed to “mine” crypto at real high speeds. You have “whales” (the traders that trade millions in cryptocurrency), you have miners (who generate it) and you have thieves (who obviously steal it). Now thieves normally break through to steal your wallet, but a new breed is on the scene in the last few of years and you may not even know about it.
Spam mail comes fast and furious in this digital age. Sometimes it kind of makes you mad, right? So when you click “unsubscribe”, did you know that some of them launch malicious code at you?
Once upon a time, mining was profitable. A “miner” has to solve some encrypted problem and gets a reward in the form of the altcoin. It’s a reward for sacrifice of time and energy. But high end computers cost money. Electricity costs a lot of money. Miners once stepped up to the plate with some serious investments in large computer farms. Heck, at one time in China, monthly electric bills would hit $75K before they tried to step in and shut down these crytpo-farms! Theft is so much faster and so easy!
You don’t even know you are being robbed, do you? Oh, why is your electric bill higher than ever before? Well… read on.
Cryptojacking is a way by which hackers gain access to your devices. They take over computers, smart phones, tablets, you name it and you don’t even notice it. Secretly, this mines on your dime. Pretty cool, huh? You can now have your processors’ power hijacked secretly. You pay just a bit, and they make money. Nice.
The software they use is designed to stay concealed. You may not notice $50 a month extra in your electric use and think it’s just inflation. You may think your computer slowdown is just normal, I mean it is getting old, right? Do you hear your cooling fan running more than normal?
How do you get infected? Clicking on a link in an unexpected or crafty email will do it. Sometimes it’s from a bank or a company you use and can look really genuine but maybe the wording is just a little off? A small grammatical error or two? How about a “click here to update now” and/or “verify your info now here” link? Do not click on these.
I go to the company’s website directly. I never click links. Never. I don’t want some crypto mining code put on my device.
Did you know that the internet is a dangerous place? These days Trojans get hidden in downloads. There are a lot of hackers out there now that even take over your cell phone’s power. I know, your phones processor seems so weak, but do this by the thousands and it adds up.
Cybersecurity is big business these days too. A lot of these scripts are not trying to steal your data or do damage but simply to steal your CPU power. It’s basically the hackers against the world right now, making you and I pay for their mining theft.
You can look this up. There was an article in Fortune about it back about a year ago. They said it was the next major threat to come along. It’s not as small a problem as you might think. There are articles on the web about utility companies’ computers being infected and even government agency servers. Even a nuclear warhead facility computer system was being used to mine Bitcoin! You would think the government would be a bit more, let’s say, aware?
How to stop it? Try Miner Block or “no coin” extensions for Firefox and Chrome. Don’t click attachments in unexpected or odd emails. Download Malwarebytes and run a scan once a week or more. Get Avast antivirus and they even have a real time protection deal. They will make you some offers once in a while for a great percentage off. Wait for that to pop up and just go for it. It has a whole host of stuff that will run, real time and keep you clean. I find these two essential. If you get any odd emails, check full headers but even then, don’t trust anything. I get so much scam and spam emails it’ impossible to even try and list all the tricks but I got one a few weeks ago that was amazingly well done. It really looked like it was from Facebook. I opened a browser and went in and yep, no such notification as was suggested in the email, but I almost fell for it and clicked! So you have to be very, very diligent and cautious. Be skeptical and be safe.