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    Fake Google Translate app installs malware to mine cryptocurrencies: Report

    Fake Google Translate app installs malware to mine cryptocurrencies: Report

    Fake Google Translate app installs malware to mine cryptocurrencies: Report
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    By CNBCTV18.com  IST (Published)

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    The malware, called Nitrokid, was created by a Turkish-speaking individual or group and infected users across 11 countries.

    Thousands of users across the globe may have fallen victim to crypto mining malware that was passed off as a fake Google Translate app. A new report from Check Point Research found that users who downloaded a fake desktop version of Google Translate were also downloading crypto mining malware.
    The malware, called Nitrokid, was created by a Turkish-speaking individual or group and infected users across 11 countries. Apart from being dropped with the fake desktop version of Google Translate, the miner was also being shipped secretly with other third-party software like desktop versions of the YouTube Music app.
    The software could be downloaded through popular websites such as Softpedia and Uptodown. The individuals behind the malware used the Chromium Embedded Framework project to directly transfer the webpages into desktop applications. While the Nitrokid developer claimed to be completely free from bloatware and malware, the software was a trojan horse which would later download the malware over 7 different stages.
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    The trojan horse, so named after the infamous Greek myth of the same name, would even delete the files from the original installation and would install the malware a month after the initial installation of the third-party program.
    The malware managed to infect over a hundred thousand devices across Israel, Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, Sri Lanka, Cyprus, Australia, Greece, Turkey, Mongolia and Poland.
    Once the crypto-miner is sneakily installed, the miner would go on to mine the Monero cryptocurrency, though the proceeds being diverted to the developer of the malware instead. This type of malware is also known as a crypto jacker. Check Point Research had previously found that this type of malware was the sixth most popular at one time across the globe.
    What can one do to not fall prey to this malware? “Beware of lookalike domains, spelling errors in websites, and unfamiliar email senders. Only download software only from authorised, known publishers or vendors and ensure your endpoint security is up to date and provides comprehensive protection,” cautioned Maya Horowitz, Vice President-Research, Check Point Software.
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