Amazon’s AWS Computing Network Falls Victim To Mining Malware

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Hackers recently infiltrated the Amazon AWS network to mine bitcoin.

A team of security researchers from intelligence group, RedLockrecently discovered malicious attackers that used the Amazon Web Services (AWS) computing network in order to mine bitcoin.

The team of experts published their findings in a report which stated that at least two companies were targeted namely, Aviva and Gemalto. Both companies are multinational corporations.

The RedLock team became aware of the attack, after noticing that several administration consoles on AWS, including Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud platforms were not password protected. This security flaw ensured easy access for the hackers.

According to the report, a deeper analysis revealed that hackers were utilizing the AWS network to execute a bitcoin mining script for a Kubernetes container. The report continued to state that this instance had essentially evolved into a parasitic bot which performed malicious activities via the internet.

Kubernetes is an open-sourced network which was created to automatize deploying, scaling, and operating application containers.

RedLock researchers confirmed that all access keys, secret tokens, and passwords were all stored in plaintext on unprotected consoles. This gave malicious attackers easy access to the critical networks where they could easily have caused more damage.

Considering bitcoin growing’s popularity, there is an increasing concern on a nation-state level regarding the illicit procurement of bitcoin. This past year witnessed a significant onslaught in cybercrimes involving cryptocurrency. In early October, South Korean law enforcement authorities confirmed that their bitcoin exchanges were targeted by North Korean state-backed hackers to steal bitcoin.

This incident was initially reported by the cybersecurity firm, FireEye. According to authorities and experts, this attack campaign was launched using phishing emails. The attack is thought to have been active since July and has since targeted several employees working at four of the most prominent bitcoin exchanging platforms in South Korea.

In addition to this attack, a report published last month confirmed that the trend of digital mining malware would affect an estimated two million computers in 2017.

However so far, security experts at Kaspersky Labs, as well as Bleeping Computer, confirmed that during the first nine months of 2017, over 1.65 million computers were affected by malicious cryptocurrency mining software.

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