New Interpol CryptoJacking Operation Reduces Infections by 78%

New Interpol operation to combat cryptojacking in Southeast Asia is ongoing and actually improving, managing to reduce the number of infected devices in all regions.

January 9, 2020, | AtoZ Markets – International crime-fighting agency Interpol has taken action to stem a plague of cryptocurrency mining malware afflicting computer routers across Asia. Thanks to Operation Goldfish Alpha, Interpol reduced incidents of illicit crypto mining by 78% in just six months.

Interpol tackles cryptojacker infecting over 20,000 routers

Cryptojacking is one of the greatest cybersecurity threats of 2019. In fact, according to Kaspersky solutions, by Q3 2019, it had overtaken Ransomware in terms of frequency and prevalence.

In a press conference held yesterday in Singapore, Interpol revealed the results of its six-month operation to reduce cryptojacking in the region. Its efforts resulted in a 78% drop in incidents compared to June 2019.

The highly coordinated operation began when Interpol learned that 20,000 MikroTik routers were being used to mine cryptocurrency illegally. This had been a popular practice among hackers since mid-2018. They made use of a MikroTik vulnerability to hijack the devices and infect more than 100,000 routers globally.

The international law enforcement agency worked with members of the private cybersecurity sector, the national police, and Computer Emergency Response Teams (CERTs) from 10 local countries including Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, and Singapore.

Participating countries were given guidelines for detecting and removing the malicious malware by patching infected routers. They also received advice on improving their cyber hygiene to prevent further attacks.

When the operation concluded in late November, the number of infected devices had been reduced by 78%

Interpol officials announced.

Efforts to remove the infections from the remaining devices continue.

What is cryptojacking?

Image result for CryptoJacking

Cryptojacking is a malicious malware code that can infect any device from the smallest IoT handheld to a company server room. It sits quietly in the background of the infected device and uses its CPU to illegally mine cryptocurrency, and make profits for the hackers.

When compared to a Ransom attack, cryptojacking is not often considered a serious threat. The reason is that it is relatively easy to detect and remove from infected devices. However, it can still cost its victims plenty of money in excessive electricity bills and even damage their devices.

Moreover, cryptojacking can occur without your device being infected. Some websites temporarily drain viewers’ computing power when they visit them. So, if you notice your computer suddenly running slowly or the fan kicking into overdrive, close your browser immediately.

And if you keep putting your computer’s failings down to old age or the number of tabs you keep open at a time, it may be worth getting it checked–especially if your power bill is higher than normal.

What do you think about the new Interpol cryptoJacking operation? Let us know in the comment section below!

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