Watch out: Cryptomining malware attacks will intensify in 2018

By: Costea Lestoc
2 minute read

Blockchain technology is developing quicker than expected and with the rising popularity of cryptocurrencies, the threats involving them are on the loose as well. As a result, cryptomining malware is 2018’s top threat, according to the latest reports. Attacks have exceeded the ones coming from ransomware during Q1 2018.

Cryptominers surged to the very top of detected malware

According to Comodo Cybersecurity’s latest report, it seems that cryptomining took the first place in the malware incidents’ top during the first quarter of this year. On the other hand, ransomware attack occurrence is declining.

According to Kenneth Geers, chief research scientist at Comodo Cybersecurity, more cyber criminals are interested in stealing money, and this rose along with cryptomining. There’s also a correlation between this increasing type of threat and current geopolitical events.

Cryptominer vs. ransomware statistics

In Q1 2018, Comodo found 28.9 million cryptominer incidents from a total of 300 million malware incidents. The number grew from 93,750 in January to 127,000 in March. On the other hand, the number of ransomware variants dropped from 124,320 in January to 71,540 in March.

According to Comodo, the increasing value of cryptocurrencies has led to these results. Hackers were able to cash in on one time payments via ransomware, but cryptominers are a gift that continues to give over an extended period of time.

Unlike the one and done nature of ransomware — and the semi-custom nature of each target’s variant — cryptominers… persist in infected machines or websites because they are often either unnoticed or tolerated by users, who find a performance impact more acceptable than dealing with the issue.

Closing words

Comodo says that cryptomining will continue to rise this year, but ransomware attacks are also expected to make a resurgence, based on the pattern that they have been using so far. Check out Comodo’s entire report.

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