Microsoft announced that it has identified a cryptocurrency mining malware in Kobe Bryant’s photo, the US basketball star who passed away in helicopter crash with his daughter.
Earlier today, Microsoft’s technology intelligence unit posted a tweet saying that cyber criminals are taking advantage of the tragic death that Bryant suffered last week.
“While the world mourns the loss of an NBA legend, cybercriminals are, as expected, taking advantage of the tragedy. We found a malicious HTML file posing as a Kobe Bryant wallpaper that contains a coin mining script.”
The script mentions “CoinHive,” a monero (XMR) cryptocurrency in-browser miner which is popular with hackers. However, CoinHive shut down all operations in March of last year.
Is worth noting that, this is not the first time for such a case, as several celebrities fell victim to such a sophisticated crypto-mining acts by cybercriminals. A recent picture of American pop star Taylor Swift finds Mining botnet MyKingz. Her image contained an EXE file that could use your computer’s resources to mine Monero’s privacy coin (XMR) if executed.
The photo of Oscar-nominated actress Scarlett Johansson was also used to hide monero mining malware.
In a related context, Cryptolydian reported earlier this week Iran’s Ministry of Industry has issued more than 1,000 licenses for local cryptocurrency miners, said Amir Naeini, an official from ICT Guild Organization. He added that the move will add nearly $8.5 billion to the domestic economy.
Cryptocurrency mining, or crypto-mining, is a process in which transactions for various forms of cryptocurrency are verified and added to the blockchain digital ledger.
Also known as cryptocoin mining, altcoin mining, or Bitcoin mining (for the most popular form of cryptocurrency, Bitcoin), cryptocurrency mining has increased both as a topic and activity as cryptocurrency usage itself has grown exponentially in the last few years.