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In China a group of hackers installed malware on computers in an internet cafes for the purpose of mining cryptocurrency Siacoin within a year. During this time, they managed to earn more than $800,000 (5 million yuan).

According to Chinese media, members of the group allegedly colluded with local companies that serve computer equipment. They installed a malware developed by the attackers to computers during a standard equipment inspection.

The money received from the cryptocurrency mining was shared between hackers and their accomplices. Acting on this fraudulent scheme, a group of hackers infected more than 100,000 computers in Internet cafes in 30 Chinese cities.

For the first time, the problem became known in July 2017, when administrators of a number of internet cafes in Rui'An сity began to notice that their computers became very slow. The CPU utilization on the PC was often more than 70 percent even after the restart.

In addition, electricity bills have also increased and the owners of the establishments applied to the police one after another. Most internet cafes used one company to service their computers. The police decided to detain her leader, who also gave out information about hackers.

In total, at the moment, 16 suspects have been detained. An investigation is still ongoing, as the malware spread to 30 cities in China which could contribute to more than 100 service companies.

Recently, experts at Palo Alto Networks said that Monero malicious miners make up about 5% of the world turnover of this cryptocurrency. According to the study, illegal mining enriched the attackers by almost $100 million.

Additionally in May, a specific type of malware tool which secretly mines cryptocurrency on user devices was discovered infecting Amazon Fire TV’s and Fire TV Sticks. It is believed that the users are unknowingly installing the malicious content through downloading unapproved apps.

By Ekaterina Ulyanova

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