India’s First Cryptojack enslaved 2000 computers of Conglomerate

India’s First Cryptojack enslaved 2000 computers of Conglomerate

India suffered the first ever large Cryptojacking attack recently. The target was one of India’s leading group of companies, the Aditya Birla Group. It’s among the country’s largest business conglomerates headquartered in Mumbai city of Maharashtra state.

More than 2,000 computers of various companies of the group were targeted by cryptojackers. In cryptojacking, the hackers don’t harm the system or steal the classified information, instead of it, they just use the computer’s mining power called hashing to mine cryptocurrency. This leads to immediate and enormous profits to the cryptojackers as the cryptojackers don’t have to invest in the resources for mining the cryptos, all the resources of victim gets exploited. The electricity, network, computing power, memory etc. of the victim is used for mining, the returns are directly transferred to the cryptojacker’s wallet.

he attack was first detected about a month ago at a group’s overseas subsidiary. Within days the malware found its way into some of the manufacturing and other services companies belonging to the business house.

The digital currency that was mined in the attack was Monero, an all time favourite among many in the crypto space due to it anonymity that is better than Bitcoin. Monero is virtually untraceable after the transfer is done. Also there is no need for special hardware like advance graphics cards in the machines, just simple CPUs can be used to mine monero.

Investopedia defines cryptojacking as:

Cryptojacking is a form of cyber attack in which a hacker hijacks a target’s processing power in order to mine cryptocurrency on the hacker’s behalf.

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 crypto mining 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.

Such attacks typically target establishments with thousands of computers. The aim is to use the victim’s hardware and make the victim pay for the huge energy consumption involved in the mining activity. On many occasions, hackers start by compromising the internet facing server.

About the Author:

Shishir Gupta is the Founder, CEO of StartupLanes and a cryptocurrency expert along with vast experience in networking and cyber security.