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December’s Most Wanted Malware: Crypto-Miners Affect 55% of Businesses Worldwide

January 2018 by Check Point

Check Point® Software Technologies Ltd. has revealed a steep rise in crypto-mining malware during December 2017. Check Point’s researchers found that cryptominers had impacted 55% of organizations globally during December, with ten different variants in the top 100 list of malware, and two variants in the top three. Using crypto-miners, cybercriminals hijack the victim’s CPU or GPU power and existing resources to mine cryptocurrency.

Furthermore, Check Point found that cryptocurrency miners have intentionally been injected into some top websites, mostly media streaming and file sharing services, without notifying the users. While some of this activity is legal and legitimate, the tools can be hacked to dominate more power and generate more revenue, using as much as 65% of the end-users’ CPU power.

Maya Horowitz, Threat Intelligence Group Manager at Check Point at Check Point commented: “Users are increasingly distrusting pop-up and banner adverts and using ad-blocking software, so websites are increasingly using crypto-miners as an alternative revenue source – often without the knowledge or permission of users, whose machines are being harnessed for mining.” Maya continues: “As a result, threat actors are also using crypto-mining tools to drain even more of users’ computing power for their own gain, and it’s likely we’ll see this trend continue to rise over the coming months.”

In December, the crypto-miner Coinhive replaced RoughTed as the most prevalent threat, while the Rig ek exploit kit maintained its position in second. Another new entry to the top ten, the crypto-miner Cryptoloot is in third.

December 2017’s Top 3 ‘Most Wanted’ Malware:

*The arrows relate to the change in rank compared to the previous month.

1. ↑ Coinhive – Crypto-Miner designed to perform online mining of Monero cryptocurrency when a user visits a web page without the user’s approval.
2. ↔ Rig ek - Rig delivers Exploits for Flash, Java, Silverlight and Internet Explorer
3. ↑Cryptoloot- Crypto-Miner, using the victim’s CPU or GPU power and existing resources for crypto mining - adding transactions to the blockchain and releasing new currency.

Triada, a modular backdoor for Android, continues to be the most popular malware used to attack organizations’ mobile estates followed by the Lokibot and Lotoor.

December’s Top 3 ‘Most Wanted’ mobile malware:
1. Triada - Modular Backdoor for Android which grants superuser privileges to downloaded malware.
2. Lokibot - Android banking Trojan and info-stealer, which can also turn into a ransomware that locks the phone.
3. Lotoor- Hack tool that exploits vulnerabilities on Android operating system in order to gain root privileges.

Check Point’s Global Threat Impact Index and its ThreatCloud Map is powered by Check Point’s ThreatCloud intelligence, the largest collaborative network to fight cybercrime which delivers threat data and attack trends from a global network of threat sensors. The ThreatCloud database holds over 250 million addresses analyzed for bot discovery, more than 11 million malware signatures and over 5.5 million infected websites, and identifies millions of malware types daily.




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