“So-called internet of things devices can be attacked and the computing power of all the gadgets can be used to mine the digital coin monero”.

Avast a cybersecurity company displayed how hackers or in the crypto world known as “cryptojackers” take control of Vulnerable internet-connected devices like security cameras, laptops, smartphones, etc and how they manipulate these devices to mine cryptocurrencies illegally.

Avast is a cybersecurity company whose roots are based in the Czech Republic, demonstrated how a number of devices running on a network powering a cryptocurrency mining software could be at the risk of being hacked at the Mobile World Congress going on at Barcelona, Spain. This is a four-day event which commenced on 26th Feb and will go on until 1st March.

Mining is basically the process of authenticating transactions on a cryptocurrency network by solving complex mathematical problems using very high-tech computers. Bitcoin cannot be mined very easily and requires a supercomputer which has good speed, however, a cryptocurrency known as monero is quite opposite and can be mined very easily using a network of internet-connected devices.

Avast made a calculated prediction based on the tests they ran, however, they didn’t manage to get 15,000 devices onto their “test-run” hacked network, but based on the tests the hack was successful. Which led them to say that hackers would need to hack 15,000 devices to mine $1,000 of cryptocurrencies over the span of four days.

If hackers manage to take control of so many devices a theoretical real-world attack would become a reality. They would then utilize the combined computing power of those devices to mine some monero.

Let’s face it $1,000 doesn’t sound like a huge amount of profit to go through so much hassle. It may seem like it’s just not worth but don’t be fooled it has tremendous potential because as predicted by a research firm Gartner by 2020, there will be over a mammoth 20 billion internet-connected devices, what this means is that the number of devices that could be attacked would be way higher. In 2017 an estimated 8.4 billion of these devices were already attacked.

Ondrej Vlcek, the chief technology officer at Avast, revealed on CNBC this Wednesday, “This ubiquity of devices combined with the fact they are so easy to attack makes them an attractive target,”

Both crypto-mining and hacking of so-called internet of things devices seem to be the rapidly trending topics. People are often left confused whether to invest seeing the huge benefits or is it all one big scam. A couple of years back, an attack on a connected device was behind a hack that wiped out nearly most of the internet access for almost half of America. It is also rumored that government-backed North Korean hackers have already begun running campaigns targeted at hacking devices for mining monero.

Monero has become quite popular among cryptojackers as it claims to be one of the most anonymous digital coins available.


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