How to remove crypto mining

By Michael Nadeau

Senior Editor,

CSO |

Cryptojacking is the unauthorized use of someone else’s computer to mine cryptocurrency. Hackers do this by either getting the victim to click on a malicious link in an email that loads cryptomining code on the computer, or by infecting a website or online ad with JavaScript code that auto-executes once loaded in the victim’s browser.

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CPU Miner is a malicious program that uses lots of computer’s CPU to mine digital currency. Crooks created numerous viruses to mine different cryptocurrency, including Bitcoins, Monero, Ethereoum, etc. The biggest problem is that users are not aware of this activity and experience serious computer-related problems.

CPU Miner malware typically spreads as a trojan horse. Therefore, users can be tricked into downloading it themselves.

Cryptojacking malware has overtaken ransomware as the number one threat. Detecting and removing such threats has become more important than ever before. McAfee Labs’ Threats Report for 2018 states that “total ‘coin miner’ malware has grown more than 4,000% in the past year.”

Cryptojacking refers to the practice of gaining access to and using a computer’s resources to mine any cryptocurrency without the device owner’s knowledge or consent. Bitcoin is still the most popular cryptocurrency, and bitcoin mining malware is unsurprisingly among the top cryptojacking threats.

Unlike ransomware, bitcoin mining threats are not obtrusive and are more likely to remain unnoticed by the victim.

However, detecting cryptojacking threats is relatively easy.

If the victim is using a premium software security suite it is almost certain to detect any bitcoin mining malware.

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A Trojan.BitCoinMiner is a computer infection that silently runs on your computer while using your CPU or GPU resources to mine for digital currencies. As the value of cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, rise, more and more criminals want to use your computer’s resources to mine for them and generate revenue.

While this type of infection may be called BitCoinMiner, it does not mean that criminals are only mining for Bitcoins. They are also mining for digital currencies such as Monero, Electroneum, and others.

What is particularly worrisome about this infection is that it will use your CPU and graphics card for long periods of time at high intensity. This causes your devices to get very hot for a long period of time, which cause damage to the hardware in your computer.

Before we get into the details of “Cryptocurrency Mining Malware”, we need to understand first what cryptocurrency is and what miners are.

Cryptocurrency is best thought of as digital currency  and it only exists on computers.

It is transferred between peers (there is no middleman like a bank).

Transactions are then recorded on a digital public ledger called the “blockchain”.

Transaction data and the ledger are encrypted using cryptography (which is why it is called “crypto” “currency”).

Cryptocurrencies are decentralized and distributed.

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