Hackers are getting brazen and a little creative when it comes to targeting bitcoin wallets, and especially mining pools where they seek to skim large digital profits.
Dell SecureWorks says hackers managed to reroute Internet traffic from numerous Internet service providers (ISPs) in an orchestrated attack on bitcoin miners, “pools” of individuals validating complex transactions through deciphered “blocks” of data.
This process allows miners to make money by using their computing resources to verify transactions for other users.
Dell SecureWorks identified a total of 19 ISPs affected by the attacks. Data used by Amazon, DigitalOcean and OVH, and other large hosting companies, were compromised between February and May 2014.
“The hijacker redirected cryptocurrency miners’ connections to a hijacker-controlled mining pool and collected the miners’ profit, earning an estimated $83,000 in slightly more than four months,” Dell Secureworks said in a blog post.
In total, researchers documented 51 compromised networks from 19 different ISPs.
Dell SecureWorks estimates that up to $9,000 in bitcoin and altcoins, such as dogecoin, was stolen every day.
During the attack, miners were largely unaware of any problem and believed they were still mining for their pool. But the flow cryptocurrency generated by their mining operations redirected elsewhere.