Mining Malware Education – BTMine

Other than Bitcoin ransomware, there are more software threats in existence which can do major harm to one’s computer. Cryptocurrency mining malware will eat up a lot of computer resources, which is a major annoyance for the end user. Although hardly any profits are to be made from this process, infecting a vast number of computers can create a ton of mining power. BTMine is one of those examples of mining malware, which was first discovered in 2011.

Also read: Bitcoin Ransomware Education – Kriptovor

BTMine Eats Up Computer Resources to Mine Bitcoin

TheMerkle_Mining Malware BTMine

As the name suggests, Bitcoin mining malware such as BTMine are infecting computers all over the world with one single purpose: mining cryptocurrency. Unlike Bitcoin ransomware, this malware attack will not encrypt user files or do any other harm on a software level. However, these attacks will use up a good amount of computer resources, slowing down to a crawl.

BTMine was the first of many different Bitcoin mining malware attacks, which was discovered by security experts at the end of 2011. Although mining Bitcoin on behalf of the person responsible for this malware is the bread and butter of this malware, BTMine could be used to perform denial-of-service attacks against web servers as well.

Getting infected with BTMine malware is not all that difficult, as the software is usually bundled with other forms of malware of spyware. Additionally, visiting infected websites would download this malware in the background and execute the software installation automatically. Last but not least, it was possible to get infected by BTMine through a malicious email attachment as well.

Once BTMine is installed on a computer, a system process will be created running this malware in the background at all times. The software will start using up computer resources to mine Bitcoin, putting a lot of stress on the CPU of the computer. While this is not a good approach to make a lot of money from mining these days, it used to be quite profitable back in 2011. However, running a CPU at close to 100% load at all times will damage the hardware in the long run.

Luckily, it was quite easy to get rid of BTMine. Running an antivirus scan and disabling System Restore would help users get rid of the malware itself. Afterwards, they would need to restart the computer in safe mode, and make a small change to the Windows Registry. Once that has been completed, several files and folders need to be deleted, and another reboot later, things should be back in working order. Keeping in mind how BTMine targets Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and Windows 2000 machines, the number of infections remains relatively low.

Source: Trend Micro

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