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Russia tops list of countries most affected by cryptocurrency threats – report

Russia tops list of countries most affected by cryptocurrency threats – report
The rising demand for cryptocurrencies has a direct influence on the growth of cryptocurrency threats, which started in the second half of 2020 and continued in 2021, says global leader in cybersecurity ESET.

According to its report, as cryptocurrencies become more mainstream, the amount of malware that seeks to make a profit from them will grow. Cryptominers were the driving force behind the growth of cryptocurrency threats, increasing by 22% in the January-April period when compared with September-December 2020.

“The countries most affected by cryptocurrency threats were Russia, where ESET telemetry saw 8.9% of such attacks, followed by Thailand and Peru, with 5.6% and 5.3% of detections, respectively.”

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Geographically, most of the web threats in January-April 2021 were detected on devices of ESET customers in Russia, Japan, Peru, Poland and France.

The report said that the upward trend comes as no surprise, since recent months have seen cryptocurrencies dramatically increase in value, becoming much more tempting for cybercriminals.

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“One could say ‘fortunately,’ yet as you’ll see in our report, we are continuing to see worrying examples of cybercrooks rapidly abusing trending vulnerabilities and configuration flaws with a focus on achieving high returns on investment,” said Roman Kovac, chief research officer at ESET. 

Those abuses include continued abuse of the remote desktop protocol (RDP), which remains the number one target of brute-force attacks, increased numbers of cryptocurrency threats, and a steep increase of Android banking malware detections, he said.

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