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Crypto Malware ‘AppleJeus’ Opens Cryptocurrency Wallets to Thieves

04.26.21

Over the past few years, hackers have been using AppleJeus malware for cyber espionage and sabotage activities. This North Korea-linked malware is used for the reported goal of cryptocurrency attacks and theft, targeting individuals and companies

Cryptocurrency Malware ‘AppleJeus’ Opens Doors to Cyber Thieves: How to Protect Yourself


April 26, 2021


Cybersecurity is a serious concern for both individuals and businesses. Over the past few years, hackers have been using AppleJeus malware for cyber espionage and sabotage activities. This North Korea-linked malware is used for the reported goal of cryptocurrency attacks and theft, targeting individuals and companies around the globe. In 2020 alone, the cyber actors targeted organizations in more than 30 countries. But what exactly is AppleJeus malware and what can you do to combat the threat?

Here's what to know. 

WHAT IS APPLEJEUS MALWARE? 

AppleJeus is a malicious malware used by digital attackers to remotely issue commands and steal cryptocurrency from users' wallets. Threat actors spread the malware through a trojanized version of a cryptocurrency trading application that can be downloaded from a seemingly official website or Twitter account. Cybercriminals trick users into downloading, opening, and installing the malware. The malicious attachments will then infect your system. 

Cyber actors use this application to target cryptocurrency exchanges and financial service companies that facilitate cryptocurrency transactions. Once they gain access to an organization's network, the attackers can prey on businesses, destroy data and disrupt systems. This opens doors to cryptocurrency thieves to steal and launder cryptocurrency from victims' accounts. Cryptocurrency worth hundreds of millions of dollars have been stolen in this way. 

Since 2018, a total of seven versions of the AppleJeus malware have emerged. The malware targets both Windows and Mac Operating Systems and is usually tweaked to improve capabilities and ensure it remains undetected. Without the necessary cybersecurity solutions, the backdoor malware can infiltrate your computer and remain silent. 

HOW IT WORKS

AppleJeus is rogue software that is commonly spread through attachments and links. The application will appear to be from a legitimate cryptocurrency trading company, a factor that lures unsuspecting users into opening the files. This malicious malware is also masked in several official-sounding names and is constantly evolving to minimize the chances of being detected.  

The crypto-related cybercrime tool is designed to embed itself on a target's device. Malicious actors use a remote administration tool to take illicit control of the computer, access stored information, and spread other malware across the network. Exploiting the existing vulnerabilities creates opportunities for thieves to access specific users' cryptocurrency wallets and steal from them. 

The effects of AppleJeus malware can be far-reaching. Apart from the theft of cryptocurrency, attackers can use malicious programs to steal banking information, passwords and for identity theft. The victim's computer can also be added to a botnet and additional malware installed on the device.  

HOW TO BE SECURE 

Cybercrime is becoming more widespread and sophisticated. It is important to find ways to protect your business against an AppleJeus crypto-malware infection. Here are a few ideas you can try. 

Avoid downloading software from untrustworthy sources

Considering how the malware is spread, you should avoid clicking links or opening attachments from suspicious email addresses. You should also avoid third-party downloaders, and use reliable anti-spyware and anti-virus software. 

Remove affected hosts from your network

Once the malware infiltrates a computer, remove the affected device from your network immediately. This will keep the malicious program from spreading, affecting other devices, and causing extensive damage. 

Train employees about phishing 

Organizations that deal in cryptocurrency can consider training employees about cybersecurity. Educated employees will remain vigilant and be in a better position to identify fake websites and phishing attacks. 

Cybersecurity solutions

Working with the right cybersecurity professionals will enable you to access effective enterprise-level security solutions. The appropriate combination of cybersecurity tools will help you identify vulnerabilities, detect attacks and protect your network from malicious malware. 

At Synergy Infosec, we are committed to helping you find vulnerabilities and protect you from being hacked. Our user-friendly dashboard has the right cybersecurity tools and scanners to empower your security. Visit our website today for a free 7-day trial of our scanners and tools, or schedule a one-on-one consultation, and learn how to protect your product from threats. 



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