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Cryptocurrency threat predictions for 2019

Cryptocurrency threat predictions for 2019Kaspersky Security Bulletin: Threat Predictions for 2019 Threat predictions for industrial security in 2019 Cyberthreats to financial institutions 2019: overview and predictions Introduction – key events in 2018 2018 saw cryptocurrency become an established part of many people’s lives, and a more attractive target for cybercriminals across the world. To some …

  • 26 Nov 2018
4 min read
Cryptocurrency threat predictions for 2019
Kaspersky Security Bulletin: Threat Predictions for 2019 Threat predictions for industrial security in 2019 Cyberthreats to financial institutions 2019: overview and predictions Introduction – key events in 2018 2018 saw cryptocurrency become an established part of many people’s lives, and a more attractive target for cybercriminals across the world. To some extent, the malicious mining of cryptocurrencies even prevailed over the main threat of the last few years: ransomware. However, in the second half of 2018, the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry faced a major development: falling prices for cryptocurrencies. The impact was felt across the landscape, with rapid decline in public interest, the activity of the crypto community and traders, and in the related activity of cybercriminals. While this will certainly affect our forecasts for 2019, let’s see how the forecasts we made for this year worked out. 1. ‘Ransomware attacks will force users to buy cryptocurrency’ This prediction turned out to be partially true. In 2018, we saw a decline in the popularity of encryptors, combined with a rise in the malicious use of cryptocurrency miners. It transpired that it is safer for attackers to perform discreet mining on infected devices than to demand a ransom and attract attention. However, it is too early to dismiss ransomware as a major threat; it is still an effective method of infection and monetization of both individuals and organizations – and cryptocurrencies remain a more easily anonymized form of ransom payment. 2. ‘We will see targeted attacks with malicious miners’ This prediction did not come true. We observed mainly isolated incidents where miners were maliciously installed in an infected corporate network. There are several reasons for that: Companies have learned to detect miners that are run on the computers of employees/administrators; both those installed by users themselves and by third parties without the knowledge of the user. The attackers themselves do not appear to consider this a promising approach. Targeted and sophisticated attacks are more about gaining persistence in the network for the purpose of espionage or the theft of money or data. It is therefore better not to attract attention by crypto-mining. 3. ‘The rise of miners will continue and involve new actors’ This prediction also turned out to be partially true: the malicious use of cryptocurrency miners actively increased during the first quarter of 2018, peaking in March. Over the following months there was a gradual decrease in activity due to the drop in price for cryptocurrencies. 4. ‘There will be more web-mining’ Again, this prediction turned out to be partially true. The web mining of cryptocurrencies reached a peak in January 2018, after which it began to decline. Webmasters, hoping to use web mining as an alternative means of website monetization alongside advertising, did not usually notify users about any hidden mining taking place on their sites. This meant that web mining quickly became associated with malicious activity. After that, it was difficult to restore its reputation. 5. ‘The fall of ICOs (Initial Coin Offering)’ Yes and no. On
Source: Securelist – Kaspersky Lab’s cyberthreat research and reportsPublished on 2018-11-26
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  • 26 Nov 2018

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