New times, new threats
The term “malware” has been around for some time. It is known among computer users as malicious software that is installed on computers without the owner knowing about it, and it usually threatens the owner’s database.
In this new era, malware has a new meaning and a new function, it is now being used to steal computing power, in order to mine crypto-currencies in the background, that is without the owner knowing about it. This new threat is known as cryptojacking.
Cryptojacking normally does not threaten your data. However, it drains your computing resources and it result in a rise in power bills.
Theneweconomy.com writes, “Cryptojacking has seen spectacular growth throughout 2018, emerging as the strategy of choice for a number of hackers. High-profile victims have included Tesla Drupal, and it would be naive to think further attacks aren’t on the horizon. With cryptojacking becoming a go-to, low-risk way for cybercriminals to make money, it’s important that organisations not only know how to spot it, but how to stop it, too.”
Organizations and companies that take this threat seriously find several guidelines and suggestions on how to protect their devices effectively. These tips from theneweconomy.com are also to be considered by individuals.
Tip#1: Invest in education on cybersecurity. - Cryptojacking typically starts with phishing emails. Employees receive messages and carelessly click on the link within. That’s how they initiate a script on their devices, starting the cryptojacking process.
Through training or self-training, you can learn to identify phishing attacks, reducing the likelihood of threats like that.
Tip#2: Consider ad blocking
Phishing attacks don’t stop at e-mails. They can work through advertisements. There are browser extensions that help you filter ads and block malicious scripts. Running such extensions, like AdBlock helps to reduce cryptojacking ad threat.
Tip#3: Adopt complete data security solutions
As theneweconomy.com explains, “Cryptojacking is not solely a threat to desktops and laptops; mobile devices such as phones and tablets are also at risk. With more and more employees bringing their own devices to work, extending security policies to mobile endpoints is critical for enterprise security.”
Tip#4: Use strong passwords and multi-factor authentication
A totally free and a very effective way to stop cybercriminals from taking control over assets is using strong passwords and using multi-factor authentication.
The good news is that cryptojacking doesn’t cause instant catastrophic damage, but because of the long-term overall performance loss of the infected devices and because of the damage resulting from the rise in power bills, it’s worth taking action for prevention and protection.