Cryptojacking shows no signs of slowing down in 2019: ESET

Cybercriminals will also increasingly use automation and machine learning so they can launch more personalised social engineering campaigns

Cryptomining: attackers will target smart devices and home assistants to build cryptomining farms, ESET experts warn.
Cryptomining: attackers will target smart devices and home assistants to build cryptomining farms, ESET experts warn.

Cases of cryptocurrency mining and cryptojacking will continue to grow in 2019, as attackers target smart devices and home assistants to build cryptomining farms, according to ESET’s latest trends report. 

Along with cryptomining, Cybersecurity Trends 2019: “Privacy and intrusion in the global village”, experts from ESET predict that 2019 will see an increase in cybercriminals’ use of automation and machine learning in attempts to collect more data so they can launch more personalised and sophisticated social engineering campaigns. While it is unlikely that cybercriminals will have access to the wealth of data stored by vendors, such as people’s regular shopping trips, they could employ web trackers that follow victims between websites or gather information from data brokers to form profiles.

Additionally, ESET security researchers reckon that, following incidents such as the Cambridge Analytica breach, people will likely begin considering alternatives to platforms such as Facebook that currently dominate. Given the importance of customer data to companies, individuals, and to cybercriminals, ESET argues that the ability to properly manage data privacy could decide which companies stay in business in 2019.

GDPR

Following the implementation of GDPR, ESET questions whether the EU legislation is the first step towards a global privacy law, particularly as similar models start to appear in California, Brazil, and Japan. Considering this, ESET warns against dismissing privacy rights and data protection as an EU anomaly. The pressure to protect customers’ data and ensure the privacy of sensitive information is a global issue and will undoubtedly encourage a move towards GDPR-style privacy around the world.

Lastly, an increase in the adoption of cryptocurrencies, as well as a rise in the number of devices connected to the internet, could mean that smart devices and home assistants become the entry point for attackers to build cryptomining farms in 2019.

Cybercriminals have already used IoT devices to launch significant denial of service attacks, but as more devices get connected and engrained into people’s lives in 2019, attackers will continue to hunt for the devices’ vulnerabilities and use them to implement threats like scams, ransomware, and cryptocurrency mining more widely, the researchers conclude.  

Most Popular

Digital Edition

Subscribe today and get your copy of the magazine for free