Bitcoin and the wider cryptocurrency market’s huge price rise over the last few years meant that criminals quickly began taking a closer interest in crypto.
A rapid increase in crypto scams and thefts came along with mainstream bitcoin awareness.
Now, cyber security researchers have warned that malware could be stealing bitcoin and litecoin wallet information.
The piece of malware, named InnfiRAT, a so-called remote access trojan, is able to steal sensitive information stored on a device including bitcoin and cryptocurrency wallet data, with cyber security researchers at Zscaler’s ThreatLabZ naming bitcoin and litecoin wallets as potentially at risk, though others are as well.
The remote access trojan searches for wallet.dat files and if found delivers them to a server controlled by the cyber criminals.
The researchers warned that RATs are usually downloaded through an infected email attachment or app and warned people should only use trusted sources.
As cyber criminals increasingly target bitcoin and cryptocurrency holders, the industry will have to find ways to adequately protect users, though it could be an uphill struggle.
Last week, researchers warned a staggering four out of the first five results returned when asking Google for a “bitcoin qr generator” led to scam websites–potentially furthering negative public perception around bitcoin and cryptocurrency.
Earlier this month, it was found bitcoin’s blockchain has been hijacked by a new strain of the Glupteba malware that uses the network to resist attacks and update itself, meaning it can continue running even if a device’s antivirus software blocks its connection to servers run by the hacker.