Posted by Virus Bulletin on Dec 13, 2011
In-the-browser botnet turns victims' CPU cycles into cash for the attackers.
Bitcoins are a digital currency whose popularity and value have increased significantly in recent years. Bitcoins can be used to make online payments and exchanged for real currency, while new bitcoins can be 'mined' using large amounts of CPU time.
Unsurprisingly, this has attracted the interest of botherders: via the botnets they control, they have access to a lot of CPU time, which can be turned into cash via bitcoin mining. Indeed, in recent months a number of malware samples have been discovered that are capable of using a compromised machine's CPU cycles to mine bitcoins.