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Bitcoin Scams

First macOS Malware Dubbed ‘Applejeus’ Hits An Exchange In North Korea

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The first macOS malware program seems to be live now – and coming directly from a team of North Korean hackers who infected a cryptocurrency exchange for both Windows and macOS users for the first time ever.

According to data from Kaspersky Lab that was published on August 23rd, the company revealed the malware – which is dubbed ‘Applejeus’ – to have made its debut into the systems of an unnamed exchange after one employee downloaded a “tainted” app. As Kaspersky Lab officially stated, the app probably came from a fake developer with fake security certificates in a major operation by a North Korean hacker collective named Lazarus Group.

The malware began stealing cryptocurrency funds, according to Kaspersky, in what marks the latest in a spate of both successful and failed attempts by North Korea in the crypto hacking space.

The report also states that in order to “ensure that the OS platform was not an obstacle to infecting targets, it seems the attackers went the extra mile and developed malware for other platforms, including for macOS.”

Before this, South Korean exchanges have been the main targets for Lazarus, after a rash of complaints by companies such as Bithumb, YouBit and Coinlink surfaced. As the head of Kaspersky’s GReAT APAC Team added:

“The fact that they developed malware to infect macOS users in addition to Windows users and – most likely – even created an entirely fake software company and software product in order to be able to deliver this malware undetected by security solutions, means that they see potentially big profits in the whole operation.”

Even though this is the first macOS attack targeting a crypto exchange, macOS malware attacks are not new to hackers. In early July, a team of security researchers discovered attacks that targeted Slack and Discord users who talked about cryptocurrencies – and hackers impersonating “key people” in crypto-related chats while sharing snippets that are downloaded and full of malicious binary codes.

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Bitcoin Scams

South Korea: Five Arrested In A New Crypto Mining Malware Case Involving 6,000+ PCs

A new case from South Korea is in the latest cryptocurrency news, this time for illicitly injecting crypto mining malware into more than 6,000 computers in the country. According to the report from the Korean National Police Agency Cyber Bureau, the group consisted of five hackers led by a 24-year old named Kim Amu-gae, all in total releasing 32,435 emails containing cryptocurrency mining malware that targeted desktop users in South Korea. Over a period of two months, the group managed to send messages containing malware to tens of thousands of job applicants, posing as employees in the company they applied for. According to the police report, the hackers obtained the email addresses of job applicants in large-scale conglomerates in the tech sector. The group is now suspected of sending emails that contained malware disguised in the form of documents and files that were sent to individuals who filed their applications on recruitment platforms. The individuals were misled by clicking on the attachments or downloading them believing that the documents were sent by companies, while their computers got compromised with a cryptocurrency mining malware in the background. The local police said:
“Because cyber security firms and anti-virus software operators responded quickly to the distribution of mining malware, the group of hackers were not able to generate a significant revenue from their operation. In most cases, anti-virus software detected the malware within three to seven days. If the malware was detected, the hackers sent new malware, but it was detected again by anti-virus software,”
Carried into over 6,000 actively used computers, the operation managed to only generate $1,000 in profit in total.    
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Bitcoin News

[UPDATED] Crypto Pioneer Charlie Shrem Fights Back The Accusations Of Stealing 5,000 Bitcoins

A few days ago in our crypto news, we posted the story of Charlie Shrem who is accused of stealing 5,000 bitcoins from the first bitcoin billionaires Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. At that time, Shrem’s lawyer Brian Klein did not provide the public with an answer or a statement but just two days ago he responded that the 5,000 Bitcoins in question belong to a certain ‘’Mr.X’’ and therefore the lawsuit is nonsense. According to Klein, Shrem made no wrongdoing whatsoever and that this lawsuit is only an ‘’ambush money-grab’’ in order to damage Shrem financially. As DC Forecasts crypto news site reported, the Gemini founders had given Shrem more than $200,000 to help them invest in Bitcoin. They say that approximately $60,000 of those funds Shrem used to purchase BTC for himself that are now worth about $30 million. The twins pointed out the lavish lifestyle Shrem was living and noted that he had no money when he went to prison three years ago. Shrem was accused of selling cryptocurrency to people who intended to purchase drugs on the dark web marketplace. For this reason, the twins hired a private investigator that then discovered that a bitcoin wallet that received 5,000 BTC from an address associated with Shrem. Klein on the other hand, claims that these funds belong to Mr. X who asked help from Shrem in order to move his coins into cold storage. He then sent the funds to Shrem’s bitcoin address.
 “Nor can WCF prove Shrem engaged in any misconduct. He did not. Shrem can show by verifiable evidence that he did not take the 5,000 bitcoins WCF accuses him of taking and that they belonged to Mr. X. Shrem, therefore, did not breach any duty to WCF, even if one were found to exist.”
Both sides are going to meet in court tomorrow Nov. 8.
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Bitcoin Scams

Fake Elon Musk Twitter Accounts Promote Bitcoin Scams, One Got Away With $170k

In the latest crypto news that surround our Bitcoin Scams section, we have new malicious attempts by Twitter users who are reportedly creating verified Twitter accounts that have been hacked to impersonate Elon Musk. After compromising the accounts, the scammers change the profile names and picture in order to pose as Elon Musk, and start posting tweets that say the Tesla CEO was conducting "the biggest" crypto giveaway in the world for those who use "Bitcoic" (read Bitcoin) and provided a link to participate in the giveaway. One of the verified (hacked) accounts even managed to get away with $170,000 by people who believed the crypto scam and posed as the Tesla CEO. In order to skirt the security measures, the scammers changed one of the characters in the name while maintaining a display name that appeared to be "Elon Musk" at a glance, precluding Twitter from flagging the amount. Elon Musk is not the first individual in the crypto and tech space that has been impersonated. The CEO of Telegram, Pavel Durov, earlier this year tweeted a warning in which he told his followers that the messaging app was expeiencing downtime due to the server clusters overheating - offering crypto to users as a "thank you" for [their] support.
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Bitcoin Scams

Scandal In Bulgaria: Officials Arrested For Selling Passports In Exchange For Bitcoin

A huge scandal emerged in Bulgaria when authorities arrested three government officials for selling passports in exchange for bitcoin, therefore we read more of that story in today’s crypto news. The officials were selling passports to foreigners mostly people from Ukraine, Macedonia, Moldova and other countries in Eastern Europe in exchange for bitcoin. The passports were authorized by Bulgarian officials, more precisely Bulgarian State Agency for Bulgarian Matters Abroad Peter Haralampiev, General Secretary Krasimir Tomov and another member of the agency Mark Stoyov. The Chief Prosecutor Ivan Geshev stated:
 “Peter Haralampiev, Krasimir Tomov, and Mark Stoyov have been arrested for fraud with the issuance of Bulgarian passports to Ukrainian, Moldovan and Macedonian citizens.”
The lawyers of the accused officials denied that their clients had anything to do with this fraud but the Prosecutor General, however, demands that the lawyers must provide evidence in order to prove that isn’t the case. The lawyers on the other hand, still haven’t provided the court with reliable evidence. Some people even expected a resignation from the Vice Prime Minister of Bulgaria Valeri Simeonov because of the level of corruption in the agency but he clearly noted that he doesn’t have such intentions. Despite the government officials involved in such criminal activities, 20 other people were detained in Bulgaria for selling passports to citizens in Ukraine, Moldova, and Macedonia while receiving more than $5,000 for a single document. Since Bulgaria is a member of the European Union, the passport allows people to live, travel and work easily in any other EU country without any restrictions unlike the citizens from the above-mentioned countries.
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