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What is Cryptojacking? Everything You Need to Know

what is cryptojacking and what do I need to know

In today's digital age, cybersecurity is something that needs to be on everyone's mind. Especially when hackers and criminals are regularly devising newer (and more effective) ways of stealing your data and using your hardware against you.

This threat is especially serious if you're involved in cryptocurrency as criminals have started to turn to cryptojacking to attack your business's security.

You're probably wondering, "what is cryptojacking?" In this article, we're covering everything you need to know about the target, including how to identify it and ways of protecting yourself and your business.

What is Cryptojacking?

Cryptojacking is one of the newer forms of cyberattack in which criminals make money using your hardware against itself. With cryptojacking, a hacker runs cryptocurrency-mining software on your hardware with your knowledge. They steal your cryptocurrency and then sell it to turn a profit.

Since mining cryptocurrency is a complex process, it drains much of your computer's power. It causes your computer to perform slower, generate more heat, and use more power than it can handle. In many cases, it will drive up your electricity bill, and ultimately, kill your computer, creating a disaster for your business.

Which Devices Can Be Jacked?

Any device that can run software can be cryptojacked. This means your Windows PC, Chromebook, iPad, and even your iPhone are at risk. For instance, if you have a web page with an embedded mining script open in your browser, you run the risk of a cybercriminal using your CPU to mine for currency.

In this scenario, the criminal mines JavaScript code that runs in your browser and mines your currency while inside of the browser. This maxes out your PC. It's important to note, however, that they'll lose the ability to mine for currency the moment you close your browser tab or leave the page.

There's also the added possibility of cryptojacking through the use of malware. By taking advantage of a flaw in your system's security or tricking you into installing malware, the criminal can run a mining script on your computer.

Cryptocurrency miners have gotten incredibly savvy when it comes to attacks. They've even started sneaking these type of malware into mobile apps.

How to Protect Yourself from Cryptocurrency Attacks

When it comes to protecting yourself and your business, the best thing to do is run security software that will automatically block any cryptocurrency miners in your browser. These types of software will block mining scripts and prevent anyone from draining your computer's battery life or mining your cryptocurrency without your knowledge.

You should also install a browser extension that will provide a blacklist of mining scripts you can look out for.

To make sure you don't accidentally download malware, only download apps from reliable sources, especially if you're using an Android device. Additionally,  regularly check your operating system for any unusual behavior so you can stop the process before they've stolen all your cryptocurrency and crashed your system.

Final Thoughts on Cryptojacking

If you're involved in the world of cryptocurrency, you need to know the most up to date ways of protecting yourself and your cryptocurrency. By following the advice in this article, you can now answer "what is cryptojacking?" and prevent criminals from using these tactics on you.

Are you in need of IT services for your business? Want to learn more about strategic technology consulting? Check out our services to see how we can assist you.

Sagacent Technologies offers technology management and support, including proactive/preventative maintenance, onsite and offsite data back-ups, network and security audits, mobility solutions, disaster planning and emergency business resumption services. The company serves clients of 10 to 150 employees within the Silicon Valley region.

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