Due to an intense rise in recognition and value of cryptocurrencies over recent years, extracting these digital coins – called cryptomining, have become worthwhile, facilitating an increase in computer hijacks. While cryptomining requires a high amount of CPU power, hackers and even website owners are turning to install hidden cryptomining scripts into their webpage to steal the CPU power from its users, in order to mine these cryptocurrencies. This has instigated a surge in cyberattacks this year that are aimed at robbing computer power from users for mining procedures without their consent.

What is cryptomining?

Cryptomining is a computationally concentrated procedure used to extract cryptocurrencies which are stored and secured electronically in a technology known as blockchain. These cryptocurrencies are mined by utilising computer power to solve complex mathematical algorithms and are accordingly rewarded with digital coins. Mining is executed by individuals within the cryptocurrency network, independently or sometimes in groups. In order to solve the algorithm, the process requires a considerable amount of computer power, as well as a special software intended for solving the algorithm.

Crypto-jacking discovered by Austreme

Through its Transaction Laundering Detection, SiteInspect Web Content Monitoring and cybersecurity monitoring service, Austreme has recently discovered a number of hidden JavaScript intended for cryptomining processes, embedded over merchant websites. While cryptomining is profitable for its operator, the most recent cyber security threat, crypto-jacking, has surfaced as a product of compulsive cryptocurrency mining. Crypto-jacking – the process where hackers or website owners embed hidden software that perform cryptomining in the browser is becoming more prevalent. This software may be used by website owners as an additional source of profit, alongside advertisements and other methods. Generally, most crypto-jackers are deceitfully exploiting the computing power of its users without their consent, in order to utilise their computing power to execute cryptomining on their behalf. Crypto-jackers aim to utilise as much computer power as they can, to maximise cryptocurrency mining.

About Austreme

Austreme monitors over 30 million sites daily, to ensure merchant sites are continually operating in compliance with rules, laws and regulations, and to promote a safe online environment. Austreme is one of the 2017 Top 25 Cyber Security Solutions Providers chosen by CIO Advisor and serve global payment service providers (PSPs), banks and master merchants etc. to comply with Visa, MasterCard and UnionPay rules. Currently, Austreme is the only PCI-DSS compliant merchant monitoring service provider.