Africa under fire from crypto ransomware

An Africa that is plagued by hacks – Sure, Africa is seen as the new bitcoin (BTC) El Dorado , but the continent is also the source of many dangers for cryptocurrency fans. Kaspersky has detected more than 1,500 threats targeting crypto-investors, specifically miners.

Africa is seized with panic

According to thestudy conducted by Kaspersky, cryptojackers (or crypto thieves) would be among the top threats coming from Africa. Some of the most common methods of fooling crypto investors are not very innovative, but still work like a charm.

Among the most common schemes used by cybercriminals are the classic :

In the end, Russian cyber security firm Kaspersky detected over 1,500 fraudulent entities targeting crypto investors and miners just in the first half of 2021.

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A look at the statistics

Kaspersky’s data based on anonymized statistics revealed that 0.85% of Kenyan crypto investors and 0.71% of Nigerians were targets of malware. Ethiopian (3.68%) and Rwandan (3.22%) investors also faced the highest number of phishing attempts.

Bethwel Opil, head of corporate sales for Africa at Kaspersky, warned that these low percentages do not mean the threat is insignificant:

“Mining malware has been identified as one of the top three malware families currently plaguing South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria (…) as cryptocurrencies gain momentum, more users will likely be targeted.”

Alexey Marchenko, head of content filtering method development at Kaspersky, said:

“Those who wish to invest or mine cryptocurrencies can easily find themselves on the radar of fraudsters.”

In June 2021, South Africa’s Inter-Governmental Financial Technology Working Group (IFWG) laid out a roadmap for regulating cryptos.

The IFWG also highlighted the risk and volatility inherent in investing in cryptos and shared 25 regulatory recommendations against money laundering, terrorist financing and market manipulation.

Small tips to avoid arnaques

To avoid falling victim to cyber criminals, Kaspersky recommends that users:

  • Not to follow suspicious links in e-mails, messages and social networks;
  • Be wary of extremely generous online offers;
  • Download applications from official libraries only;
  • Use a security solution that protects against phishing, scams and prevents the installation of malicious applications;
  • Take extra precautions before buying a product from an online store if the company is unknown. It is best to first check special WHOIS sites for information on how long the domain has existed and who owns it. If they are recent and registered to a private person, it is better not to buy from him.

Scam stories are unfortunately rife in the cryptocurrency world. As the sector is still young and complex, many are fooled by the lure of gain and too much talk. Even if the wheel turns sometimes, as with the case of this scammer scammed, caution is the mother of safety.

Stay away from scammers of all stripes, and choose your intermediaries carefully. Come acquire and trade your first bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies by registering on the trusted platform FTX. You will receive a lifetime discount on your transaction fees (affiliate link).