Hackers Infect Microsoft Servers with Crypto Mining Malware. Here's How They Did It

Wed, 04/01/2020 - 15:32
Alex Dovbnya
Thousands of Microsoft servers have been compromised to stealthily mine cryptocurrency
Cover image via stock.adobe.com

According to Hacker News, more than 2,000 Microsoft SQL database servers have been compromised by cryptojackers with the 'Volgar' botnet that has been up and running since 2018. 

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Monero and Vollar 

The hackers behind this operation were able to infect up to 3,000 servers over the last few weeks. They use brute-force password-guessing attacks to create backdoor users and execute malicious commands. 

Their possible victims span a myriad of industries -- from healthcare to telecommunication.       

With the help of infected servers, the attackers were able to mine Monero (XMR) and a little-known altcoin called Vollar (the botnet itself was named after this cryptocurrency).   

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A new source of monetization 

The machines that run MS-SQL databases are an attractive target for hackers. On top of storing valuable personal information, they also boast powerful CPUs, which is particularly valuable for those bad actors who rely on cryptojacking for monetization.       

As reported to U.Today, the Stantinko botnet recently added new obfuscating techniques for illegal cryptocurrency mining.  

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About the author

Alex Dovbnya (aka AlexMorris) is a cryptocurrency expert, trader and journalist with extensive experience of covering everything related to the burgeoning industry — from price analysis to Blockchain disruption. Alex authored more than 1,000 stories for U.Today, CryptoComes and other fintech media outlets. He’s particularly interested in regulatory trends around the globe that are shaping the future of digital assets, can be contacted at alex.dovbnya@u.today.

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