Cryptovest is reporting today that Dutch National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism has released Cyber Security Assessment Netherlands 2018, a report on the state of digital threats to the nation in 2018. The report found that while traditional malware is on the decline, cryptojacking is on the rise.
The report cross referenced data from the Dutch National Cyber Security Center (NCSC), as well as governmental and business databases to create an overview of what cyber threats were most prevalant in the country in the last 12 months. It looked at traditional forms of attack such as DDoS and ransomware, but also had a special section just for cryptojacking.
Cryptojacking refers to special malware that can be run from malicious websites which infects the host computer and uses it to remotely mine cryptocurrency. A commonly used program is called Coinhive, which attackers implement to mine monero.
The report found that cryptojacking is taking over where traditional malware once ruled:
"Cryptojacking attacks appear to have increased in this reporting period, while the number of ransomware infections fell in the second half of 2017. A number of sources have established a relationship between the decrease in ransomware and the increase in cryptojacking."
The relative simplicity and safety of cryptojacking is likely in part what is making it attractive to criminals. It is also likely that as cryptocurrency becomes more popular, so too will this form of exploitation.