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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: cryptocurrency

WARNING: Hackers Install Secret Backdoor on Thousands of Microsoft SQL Servers

WARNING: Hackers Install Secret Backdoor on Thousands of Microsoft SQL Servers

April 01, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Cybersecurity researchers today uncovered a sustained malicious campaign dating back to May 2018 that targets Windows machines running MS-SQL servers to deploy backdoors and other kinds of malware, including multi-functional remote access tools (RATs) and cryptominers. Named " Vollgar " after the Vollar cryptocurrency it mines and its offensive "vulgar" modus operandi, researchers at Guardicore Labs said the attack employs password brute-force to breach Microsoft SQL servers with weak credentials exposed to the Internet. Researchers claim the attackers managed to successfully infect nearly 2,000-3,000 database servers daily over the past few weeks, with potential victims belonging to healthcare, aviation, IT & telecommunications, and higher education sectors across China, India, the US, South Korea, and Turkey. Thankfully for those concerned, researchers have also released a script to let sysadmins detect if any of their Windows MS-SQL servers have been
2 Chinese Charged with Laundering $100 Million for North Korean Hackers

2 Chinese Charged with Laundering $100 Million for North Korean Hackers

March 02, 2020Ravie Lakshmanan
Two Chinese nationals have been charged by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) and sanctioned by the US Treasury for allegedly laundering $100 million worth of virtual currency using prepaid Apple iTunes gift cards. According to a newly unsealed court document , the illicit funds originated from a $250 million haul stolen from two different unnamed cryptocurrency exchanges that were perpetrated by Lazarus Group , a cybercrime group with ties with the North Korean government. The two individuals in question — Tian Yinyin (田寅寅)  and Li Jiadong (李家东) — were both charged with operating an unlicensed money transmitting business and money laundering conspiracy. Prosecutors said the defendants worked on behalf of the threat actors based in North Korea to allegedly launder over a $100 million worth of stolen cryptocurrency to obscure transactions, adding the hacking of cryptocurrency exchanges posed a severe threat to the security of the global financial system. It's worth notin
Official Monero Site Hacked to Distribute Cryptocurrency Stealing Malware

Official Monero Site Hacked to Distribute Cryptocurrency Stealing Malware

November 20, 2019Swati Khandelwal
What an irony — someone hacked the official website of the Monero cryptocurrency project and quietly replaced legitimate Linux and Windows binaries available for download with malicious versions designed to steal funds from users' wallets. The latest supply-chain cyberattack was revealed on Monday after a Monero user spotted that the cryptographic hash for binaries he downloaded from the official site didn't match the hashes listed on it. Following an immediate investigation, the Monero team today also confirmed that its website, GetMonero.com , was indeed compromised, potentially affecting users who downloaded the CLI wallet between Monday 18th 2:30 am UTC and 4:30 pm UTC. At this moment, it's unclear how attackers managed to compromise the Monero website and how many users have been affected and lost their digital funds. According to an analysis of the malicious binaries done by security researcher BartBlaze, attackers modified legitimate binaries to inject
Two Arrested for Stealing $550,000 in Cryptocurrency Using Sim Swapping

Two Arrested for Stealing $550,000 in Cryptocurrency Using Sim Swapping

November 15, 2019Swati Khandelwal
It appears that at least the United States has started taking the threat of Sim Swapping attacks very seriously. Starting with the country's first-ever conviction for 'SIM Swapping' this February, U.S. Department of Justice has since then announced charges against several individuals for involving in the scheme to siphon millions of dollars in cryptocurrency from victims. In the latest incident, the U.S. authorities on Thursday arrested two more alleged cybercriminals from Massachusetts, charging them with stealing $550,000 in cryptocurrency from at least 10 victims using SIM swapping between November 2015 and May 2018. SIM Swapping, or SIM hijacking, is a technique that typically involves the social engineering of a target's mobile phone provider. An attacker makes a phony call posing as their targets and convinces the mobile phone provider to port the target's phone number to a SIM card belonging to the attacker. Once successful, the attacker can t
Capital One Hacker Also Accused of Hacking 30 More Companies and CryptoJacking

Capital One Hacker Also Accused of Hacking 30 More Companies and CryptoJacking

August 29, 2019Wang Wei
Former Amazon employee Paige Thompson , who was arrested last month in relation to the Capital One data breach , has been accused of hacking not only the U.S. credit card issuer, but also more than 30 other companies. An indictment unsealed on Wednesday revealed that Thompson not just stole data from misconfigured servers hosted with a cloud-computing company, but also used the computing power of hacked servers to mine for cryptocurrency, a practice commonly known as " Cryptojacking ." Thompson, known online as "erratic," was arrested by the FBI on July 29 concerning a massive breach in Capital One Financial Corp that exposed the personal information of more than 100 million credit card applicants in the United States and 6 million in Canada. The stolen data included approximately 140,000 Social Security numbers and 80,000 bank account numbers linked to United States customers, and 1 million Social Insurance numbers belonged to Canadian citizens, along wit
Binance Confirms Hacker Obtained Its Users' KYC Data from 3rd-Party Vendor

Binance Confirms Hacker Obtained Its Users' KYC Data from 3rd-Party Vendor

August 26, 2019Wang Wei
As suspected, the KYC details of thousands of Binance's customers that hackers obtained and leaked online earlier this month came from the company's third-party vendor, Malta-based cryptocurrency exchange Binance confirmed. For those unaware, Binance, the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume, hit by a " Potential KYC leak " earlier this month, with an unknown hacker distributing the Know Your Customer (KYC) images of hundreds of its users online and to media outlets. Before leaking the KYC images online, the alleged hacker threatened the exchange to release KYC data of its 10,000 customers if the company did not pay 300 Bitcoins—equivalent to over $3 million at today's exchange value. While Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao called the incident a fud (fear, uncertainty, doubt), the exchange recently confirmed that some of the leaked images match actual accounts though others show evidence of manipulation. According to an official blog post , t
Binance KYC Data Leak — Crypto Exchange Sets $290,000 Bounty On Blackmailer

Binance KYC Data Leak — Crypto Exchange Sets $290,000 Bounty On Blackmailer

August 07, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Malta-based cryptocurrency exchange Binance has become a victim of a ransom demand from a scammer who claimed to have hacked the KYC (Know Your Customer) data of thousands of its customers. The unknown attacker threatened the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume to release KYC information of 10,000 users if the company did not pay 300 Bitcoins—that's equivalent to almost $3.5 million at today's exchange value. Although the authenticity of the hack is not confirmed yet, several photos of individuals holding their identity cards, such as passports and voter IDs, have been circulating across different online channels. In response to the incident, Binance just released an official statement today confirming that "an unidentified individual has threatened and harassed us, demanding 300 BTC in exchange for withholding 10,000 photos that bear similarity to Binance KYC data." Binance said the company is still investigating the legitimacy of those
This Cryptomining Malware Launches Linux VMs On Windows and macOS

This Cryptomining Malware Launches Linux VMs On Windows and macOS

June 21, 2019Mohit Kumar
Cybersecurity researchers from at least two firms today unveiled details of a new strain of malware that targets Windows and macOS systems with a Linux-based cryptocurrency mining malware. It may sound strange, but it's true. Dubbed " LoudMiner " and also " Bird Miner, " the attack leverages command-line based virtualization software on targeted systems to silently boot an image of Tiny Core Linux OS that already contains a hacker-activated cryptocurrency mining software in it. Isn't it interesting to use emulation to run single-platform malware on cross-platforms? Spotted by researchers at ESET and Malwarebytes , attackers are distributing this malware bundled with pirated and cracked copies of VST (Virtual Studio Technology) software on the Internet and via Torrent network since August 2018. VST applications contain sounds, effects, synthesizers, and other advanced editing features that allow tech-centric audio professionals to create music.
Cryptocurrency Firm Itself Hacked Its Customers to Protect Their Funds From Hackers

Cryptocurrency Firm Itself Hacked Its Customers to Protect Their Funds From Hackers

June 06, 2019Mohit Kumar
Are you using Komodo's Agama Wallet to store your KMD and BTC cryptocurrencies? Were your funds also unauthorisedly transferred overnight to a new address? If yes, don't worry, it's probably safe, and if you are lucky, you will get your funds back. Here's what exactly happened… Komodo, a cryptocurrency project and developer of Agama wallet, adopted a surprisingly unique way to protect its customers' funds. The company hacked its customers and unauthorisedly transferred nearly 8 million KMD and 96 Bitcoins from their cryptocurrency wallets to a new address owned by the company. Why? To secure funds of its customers from hackers. This may sound weird, but it's true. Komodo recently learned about a malicious open source, third-party JavaScript library that the company was using in its Agama Wallet app. The library, named "electron-native-notify," two months ago received a update from its anonymous author who included a secret backdoo
Cryptocurrency Hacks Still Growing — What Does That Mean for the Industry?

Cryptocurrency Hacks Still Growing — What Does That Mean for the Industry?

May 14, 2019Wang Wei
Though once synonymous with underground networks and black hat hackers, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have gone mainstream over the past two years. In 2017, we saw the skyrocket of bitcoin to an all-time high of close to $20,000 followed by a significant decline the following year. But beyond the ups and downs in the market for the world's largest cryptocurrency is a much more sinister story revolving around cyber-attacks of the economy's newest asset class. In 2018, it estimated that as much as $1.7 billion worth of cryptocurrencies were swindled away from investors (likely more) through a variety of means. Whether accomplished through hacking, phishing, or other forms of scamming, it's clear that the crypto industry is facing a serious dilemma with security. For a technological movement based on decentralization and the advantages it offers for security, the number of breaches occurring is startling. Cryptocurrencies offer users a way to send money with
U.S. Charges 9 'SIM Swapping' Attackers For Stealing $2.5 Million

U.S. Charges 9 'SIM Swapping' Attackers For Stealing $2.5 Million

May 10, 2019Mohit Kumar
The U.S. Department of Justice today announced charges against nine individuals, 6 of which are members of a hacking group called "The Community" and other 3 are former employees of mobile phone providers who allegedly helped them steal roughly $2.5 million worth of the cryptocurrency using a method known as "SIM Swapping." According to the 15-count indictment unsealed today, five Americans and an Irishman related to The Community hacking group are charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, as well as wire fraud and aggravated identity theft. Another three Americans, who reportedly are the former employees of mobile phone providers, are charged in a criminal complaint with the wire fraud. SIM Swapping , or SIM Hijacking , is a type of identity theft that typically involves fraudulently porting of the same number to a new SIM card belonging to the attacker. In SIM swapping, attackers social engineer a victim's mobile phone provider by convincing it
Binance Hacked — Hackers Stole Over $40 Million Worth Of Bitcoin

Binance Hacked — Hackers Stole Over $40 Million Worth Of Bitcoin

May 07, 2019Mohit Kumar
Binance, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, confirmed today that the company lost nearly $41 million in Bitcoin in what appears to be its largest hack to date. In a statement, Binance's CEO Changpeng Zhao said the company discovered a "large scale security breach" earlier on May 7, as a result of which hackers were able to steal roughly 7000 bitcoins, which worth 40.6 million at the time of writing. News of the hack comes just hours after Zhao tweeted that Binance has "to perform some unscheduled server maintenance that will impact deposits and withdrawals for a couple of hours." According to the company, malicious attackers used a variety of attack techniques, including phishing and computer viruses, to carry out the intrusion and were able to breach a single BTC hot wallet (a cryptocurrency wallet that's connected to the Internet), which contained about 2% of the company's total BTC holdings, and withdraw stolen Bitcoins
Rapidly Growing Electrum Botnet Infects Over 152,000 Users; Steals $4.6 Million

Rapidly Growing Electrum Botnet Infects Over 152,000 Users; Steals $4.6 Million

April 30, 2019Mohit Kumar
An ongoing attack against Electrum Bitcoin wallets has just grown bigger and stronger with attackers now targeting the whole infrastructure of the exchange with a botnet of over 152,000 infected users, raising the amount of stolen users' funds to USD 4.6 million. Electrum has been facing cyber attacks since December last year when a team of cybercriminals exploited a weakness in the Electrum infrastructure to trick wallet users into downloading the malicious versions of the software. In brief, the attackers added some malicious servers to the Electrum peer network which were designed to purposely display an error to legitimate Electrum wallet apps, urging them to download a malicious wallet software update from an unofficial GitHub repository. The phishing attack eventually allowed attackers to steal wallet funds (almost 250 Bitcoins that equals to about $937,000 at the time) and take full control over the infected systems. To counter this, the developers behind Electrum
Hackers Steal $19 Million From Bithumb Cryptocurrency Exchange

Hackers Steal $19 Million From Bithumb Cryptocurrency Exchange

March 30, 2019Wang Wei
Hackers yesterday stole nearly $19 million worth of cryptocurrency from Bithumb , the South Korea-based popular cryptocurrency exchange admitted today. According to Primitive Ventures' Dovey Wan, who first broke the information on social media, hackers managed to compromise a number of Bithumb's hot EOS and XRP wallets and transferred around 3 million EOS (~ $13 million) and 20 million XRP (~ $6 million) to his newly-created accounts. The hacker then distributedly transferred the stolen digital assets to his different accounts created on other cryptocurrency exchanges, including Huobi, HitBTC, WB, and EXmo, via ChangeNow, a non-custodial crypto swap platform does not require KYC/account. Bithumb has been hacked multiple times in the past. Last time the popular cryptocurrency exchange was hacked in June 2018, when hackers stole $31 million, and in July 2017, when hackers stole $1 million worth of EOS from many wallets belonging to its users. "And this is the se
Hackers Favorite CoinHive Cryptocurrency Mining Service Shutting Down

Hackers Favorite CoinHive Cryptocurrency Mining Service Shutting Down

February 28, 2019Wang Wei
Coinhive, a notorious in-browser cryptocurrency mining service popular among cybercriminals, has announced that it will discontinue its services on March 8, 2019. Regular readers of The Hacker News already know how Coinhive's service helped cyber criminals earn hundreds of thousands of dollars by using computers of millions of people visiting hacked websites . For a brief recap: In recent years, cybercriminals leveraged every possible web vulnerability [in Drupal , WordPress , and others ] to hack thousands of websites and wireless routers , and then modified them to secretly inject Coinhive's JavaScript-based Monero (XMR) cryptocurrency mining script on web-pages to financially benefit themselves. Millions of online users who visited those hacked websites immediately had their computers' processing power hijacked, also known as cryptojacking , to mine cryptocurrency without users' knowledge, potentially generating profits for cybercriminals in the background.
Hackers Actively Exploiting Latest Drupal RCE Flaw Published Last Week

Hackers Actively Exploiting Latest Drupal RCE Flaw Published Last Week

February 26, 2019Swati Khandelwal
Cybercriminals have actively started exploiting an already patched security vulnerability in the wild to install cryptocurrency miners on vulnerable Drupal websites that have not yet applied patches and are still vulnerable. Last week, developers of the popular open-source content management system Drupal patched a critical remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability (CVE-2019-6340) in Drupal Core that could allow attackers to hack affected websites. Despite releasing no technical details of the security vulnerability, the proof-of-concept (PoC) exploit code for the vulnerability was made publicly available on the Internet just two days after the Drupal security team rolled out the patched version of its software. Now, security researchers at data center security vendor Imperva discovered a series of attacks—that began just a day after the exploit code went public—against its customers' websites using an exploit that leverages the CVE-2019-6340 security flaw. The attacks or
First Android Clipboard Hijacking Crypto Malware Found On Google Play Store

First Android Clipboard Hijacking Crypto Malware Found On Google Play Store

February 11, 2019Swati Khandelwal
A security researcher has discovered yet another cryptocurrency-stealing malware on the official Google Play Store that was designed to secretly steal bitcoin and cryptocurrency from unwitting users. The malware, described as a " Clipper ," masqueraded as a legitimate cryptocurrency app and worked by replacing cryptocurrency wallet addresses copied into the Android clipboard with one belonging to attackers, ESET researcher Lukas Stefanko explained in a blog post . Since cryptocurrency wallet addresses are made up of long strings of characters for security reasons, users usually prefer copying and pasting the wallet addresses using the clipboard over typing them out. The newly discovered clipper malware, dubbed Android/Clipper.C by ESET, took advantage of this behavior to steal users cryptocurrency. To do this, attackers first tricked users into installing the malicious app that impersonated a legitimate cryptocurrency service called MetaMask , claiming to let users
Critical Zcash Bug Could Have Allowed 'Infinite Counterfeit' Cryptocurrency

Critical Zcash Bug Could Have Allowed 'Infinite Counterfeit' Cryptocurrency

February 06, 2019Swati Khandelwal
The developers behind the privacy-minded Zcash cryptocurrency have recently discovered and patched a highly dangerous vulnerability in the most secretive way that could have allowed an attacker to coin an infinite number of Zcash (ZEC). Yes, infinite… like a never-ending source of money. Launched in October 2016, Zcash is a privacy-oriented cryptocurrency that claims to be more anonymous than Bitcoin, as the sender, recipient, and value of transactions remain hidden. In a blog post published today, the Zerocoin Electric Coin Company—the startup behind Zcash—revealed that one of its employees, Ariel Gabizon, discovered the vulnerability in its code on 1st March 2018, the night prior to his talk at the Financial Cryptography conference almost a year ago. Gabizon contacted Sean Bowe, a Zcash Company's cryptographer, immediately after discovering the counterfeiting vulnerability, as dubbed by the team, and the team decided to keep the flaw secret in order to avoid the risk o
Cryptocurrency Firm Loses $145 Million After CEO Dies With Only Password

Cryptocurrency Firm Loses $145 Million After CEO Dies With Only Password

February 04, 2019Mohit Kumar
QuadrigaCX, the largest bitcoin exchange in Canada, has claimed to have lost CAD 190 million (nearly USD 145 million) worth of cryptocurrency after the exchange lost access to its cold (offline) storage wallets. Reason? Unfortunately, the only person with access to the company's offline wallet, founder of the cryptocurrency exchange, is dead. Following the sudden death of Gerry Cotten , founder and chief executive officer QuadrigaCX, the Canadian exchange this week filed for legal protection from creditors in the Nova Scotia Supreme Court until it locates and secures access to the lost funds. In a sworn affidavit filed by Cotten's widow Jennifer Robertson and obtained by Coindesk , Robertson said QuadrigaCX owes its customers some CAD 260 million (USD 198 Million) in both cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, and Ethereum, as well as fiat money. However, Robertson said the cryptocurrency exchange only has smaller amount in a 'hot wallet' (U
First Hacker Convicted of 'SIM Swapping' Attack Gets 10 Years in Prison

First Hacker Convicted of 'SIM Swapping' Attack Gets 10 Years in Prison

February 04, 2019Swati Khandelwal
A 20-year-old college student who stole cryptocurrency worth more than $5 million by hijacking victims' phone numbers has pleaded guilty and accepted a sentence of 10 years in prison. Ortiz was arrested last year on charges of siphoning millions of dollars in cryptocurrency from around 40 victims using a method commonly known as " SIM swapping ," which typically involves fraudulently porting of the same number to a new SIM card belonging to the attacker. In SIM swapping, attackers social engineer a victim's mobile phone provider by making a phony call posing as their target and claiming that their SIM card has been lost and that they would like to request a SIM swap. The attackers attempt to convince the target's telecommunications company that they are the actual owner of the phone number they want to swap by providing required personal information on the target, like their SSNs and addresses, eventually tricking the telecoms to port the target's pho
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