The cryptocurrency world is an amazing place. As the cryptocurrency market continues to grow, there are loads of opportunities, risks, and scams. Owning cryptocurrency isn’t actually the best activity as it was at the beginning of the year 2010, but crypto enthusiasts still face loads of uncertainty and dangers.
The threats aren’t just general or technical; new scams crop up, and old ones resurge all the time. Whether it’s a fake wallet, a phishing endeavor to steal private cryptographic keys, or even Ponzi schemes, cryptojacking there’s something to watch out for at every turn. Many people are unaware of the security loopholes.
Hackers have already targeted many blockchain platforms using various hacking techniques like social engineering, malware, cryptojacking, and exploits. People and developers must understand the security risks. In this post, we will look at current vulnerabilities and specific events within blockchain implementations. We will cover hackers’ techniques, targets, and malware used for attacks and how to protect from hackers.
In most cases, the users of blockchain are the obvious targets. Due to a popular start-up comprehension, in which security usually takes a backseat, cryptocurrency firms often fall in this category. This category encompasses well-adopted blockchain implementations such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. Hackers have utilized numerous methods to target users and companies using well-established methods. The primary attack vectors involve:
Phishing: Phishing scams are the most familiar blockchain attacks due to their prevalence and success rate. Phishing is the deceitful effort to collect sensitive data such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details, frequently for malicious intentions, by hiding as a reliable object in an electronic communication.
Malware: This is the most commonly used vector by attackers. Thousands of websites worldwide have fallen victim to a cryptojacking malware that demands their visitors’ computers to mine cryptocurrency without them recognizing when browsing the site. According to the cybersecurity company McAfee, cryptojacking malware grew by 629% from the end of 2017 to the first quarter of 2018. Cryptojacking is also a type of cyber attack in which an attacker hijacks a target’s processing power to mine cryptocurrency on the attacker’s behalf.
Vulnerabilities: This kind of a threat is an attack against the blockchain implementation. These perils are much more like the exploits of established software and web applications. The Bitcoin wiki manages a list of well-known vulnerabilities and dangers related to their official tools.
How To Protect Yourself from Hacks?
So what’s the safest way to defend your cryptocurrency investments from hacks?
- If you are opening an account on any cryptocurrency exchange platform, then make sure to use a unique email.
- Always use a strong and lengthy password and make sure to access it from a piece of paper that you control.
- Don’t disclose anything about the cryptocurrency publicly, especially on social media.
- Don’t forget to add a “do not port” SIM card to your account and try to use a “cold wallet.”
- Store tokens on a hardware wallet and don’t store all the cryptocurrency investments in one place.
- Avoid installing unknown Google play store and App store apps.
- Always use a separate browser for transactions concerning cryptocurrencies. Try to utilize incognito mode, use a separate PC for a smartphone. Download antivirus software and do not download any crypto add-ons.
- Use a two-factor authentication technique.
- Never use a public WiFi and don’t forget to regularly update the router’s firmware.
- Always use an HTPPS protocol when communicating with crypto-related sites. Also, when utilizing Chrome, customize the extension.
- Backup your files and do not click on links, if you do not know who sent them. Also scan attachments, links with tools like VirusTotal. Make sure all operating system updates are installed.
- Try to use a hardware wallet. It is best for storing tokens and it is key to making transactions. This crypto wallet is a password-protected and comes with a private key.
At the end of the day, nearly anything can be hacked. These defenses will help prevent hackers from going after you. Most attackers will go after the soft targets that are easy to hack or vulnerable. Attackers also go after those users who store all their cryptocurrency in one easy to hack place.
Disclaimer: This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of any cryptocurrency. It is not a recommendation to trade. The cryptocurrency market is full of surprises and overhyped assets. Do your research before buying anything. Do not invest more than you can afford to lose.