A study has concluded that cyber threats related to cryptocurrencies have increased with increasing demand for digital assets. The authors point out that Russia, Thailand and Peru are the countries most affected by malicious attacks designed to take advantage of the increased interest in decentralized money.
Fast-growing crypto markets expose cybercriminals
Despite the ongoing COVID pandemic still making headlines around the world, the topic has lost some prominence in the cyber threat landscape since the beginning of this year. Also, there has been an increase in cryptocurrency-related threats in the past few months along with rising crypto prices, recently reveals. report good by ESET.
Mainstream acceptance including celebrities and executives such as famous American rappers snoop dogg and Tesla CEO Elon Muskhas also contributed to the growing appeal of crypto assets. In a study released earlier this month and quoted by RT on Monday, the company stressed, “the rapidly growing cryptocurrency exposes cybercriminals.”
Crypto-related threats began to increase in the second half of 2020 and continued to rise in the first four months of 2021. This particular malware category expanded by 18.6%, with two spikes related to cryptocurrency miners in February and April. Given that major cryptocurrencies like bitcoin (B T c) and Ethereum (ETH) have reached their all-time high during this period, the researchers commented:
The upward trend comes as no surprise, as the value of cryptocurrencies has increased dramatically in recent months, making it more attractive to cybercriminals.
The Russian Federation is the country that has suffered the most from cyber threats related to cryptocurrencies this year, accounting for 8.9% of all attacks. G7 leaders recently called on the government in Moscow to identify those who misused cryptocurrencies in ransomware attacks, such as Bitcoin.com News Reported. Thailand is followed by Russia, with 5.6% of detections, and Peru ranks third with 5.3%.
Miners Drive Evolution in Crypto-Related Cyber Threats
ESET said that cryptocurrency mining software has been the driving force behind the development of cryptocurrency threats. According to the cyber security firm, this type of malware, including cryptojacking attacks, has increased by 22% this year compared to the last four months of 2020.
Meanwhile, the share of crypto thefts declined by 28%. Malicious software in this category often targets the biggest, most established cryptocurrencies like bitcoin (B T c) and Ethereum (ETH), whose mining is no longer as profitable. ESET has reported a significant increase in the attacks involved. ETH. Cybercriminals spreading mining software usually target smaller coins that have become popular recently.
According to ESET Senior Detection Engineer Igor Kabina, crypto-related criminality in cyberspace is closely tied to ransomware as well. The rising value of cryptocurrency, which experts say is a means of payment in such attacks, prompts criminals to create more ransomware. “This is because the relative anonymity provided by the cryptocurrency trading market enables threat actors to increase their profits without taking unnecessary risks,” the cybersecurity expert elaborated.
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