Criminals Pocket $63,000 by Mining Monero Using Hijacked Windows Servers

Monero mining has gotten somewhat of a bad reputation over the past few months. Although the currency itself is perfectly fine, criminals are flocking to XMR over Bitcoin these days. Especially when it comes to illicit mining operations, Monero is a far better choice compared to Bitcoin. A group of hackers earned close to $63,000 in 3 months mining Monero with hijacked Microsoft Servers.

It is evident cryptocurrency will always remain attractive to criminals for multiple reasons. Most consumers won’t get involved in mining, simply because it is a costly operation. Criminals aren’t too bothered whose resources they hijack, as long as it brings in money. It turns out Microsoft Servers are a pretty powerful tool in this regard. Windows web servers can provide enough mining capacity to result in a profitable operation.

Criminals Mine Monero Using Windows Server 2003

More specifically, the ESET report shows how hackers made $63,000 worth of Monero in three months.  That in itself is pretty interesting, as it is far more than people would assume. Infected web servers often go by unnoticed until they start slowing down significantly. So far, that has taken about three months. The vulnerability exploited is found in Microsoft IIS 6.0 and allows assailants to install software without issues. A very troublesome security development, to say the least.

The big question is always who is behind such an attack. For now, that is is a big unknown. The ESET report doesn’t mention ay culprit by name, nor do they have any idea where to look in the first place. Microsoft has been aware of this flaw since March of 2017, yet a lot of servers still remain unpatched. Anyone running Windows Server 2003 R2 needs to update as soon as possible for obvious reasons.

It is not the first time Monero mining becomes controversial. More specifically, there are many ways to hijack computing resources of unsuspecting users. In some cases, it doesn’t even require the installation of nefarious software ether. One cna simply modify a website to inject JavaScript capable of mining XMR as well. It is evident this new form of obtaining cryptocurrency will remain highly controversial for some time to come.

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