Is it possible to detect mining of bitcoins on an enterprise network?


An enterprise network administrator concerned with the operation on its systems of software that contradicts policy should already employ some kind of security scanner software. Adding the known miners to that list of flagged software is the best recourse. Additionally, watching for outbound connections to the known DNS names for peer lookup or outbound connections on a certain few known ports could yield better results with less software impeding operation.

In short, they're just programs, and administrators should already have in place the tools and knowledge necessary to block the programs from running or detect that they are running.

For ethics, the general vibe in the community is mine only on hardware you own, but obviously, not everyone follows...

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If “mining” sounds like a process which extracts value from Bitcoin, nothing could be further from the truth!

Miners are the backbone of the Bitcoin network:

Without miners, the network would collapse and lose all value.

The role of miners is to secure the network and to process every Bitcoin transaction.

Miners achieve this by solving a computational problem which allows them to chain together blocks of transactions (hence Bitcoin’s famous “blockchain”).

For this service, miners are rewarded with newly-created Bitcoins and transaction fees.

The Blockchain

To understand mining, it’s first necessary to understand the Bitcoin blockchain.

It works like this:

All Bitcoin transactions are recorded in the blockchain, in a linear, time-stamped series of bundled transactions known as blocks.

The blockchain is essentially a public ledger, which is freely shared, continually updated and under no central control.

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Bitcoin networks have been growing and developing significantly and becoming more widespread among traders, investors, customers and business owners. Since 2009 when Bitcoin first appeared on the market, the price of Bitcoins has been rapidly increasing, up to $1,100 per coin and decreasing to as low as $300 per coin over a short period. Today, its price sits between $400 and $500 per coin. The Bitcoin network is not fixed or stable, it is developing over time. Therefore, it is interesting and difficult at the same time, to understand what it is going to happen in the next few years. Let’s disclose several potential ways that Bitcoin may develop and discuss what threats the network may face.

The Monopoly of Big Mining Pools

The first and the most problematic issue with Bitcoins network development is the centralization of the mining process. Today, just as a few years ago, mining is an unprofitable deal for a solo miner. Even if you have the latest ASIC and...

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Azure Security Center helps customers deal with myriads of threats using advanced analytics backed by global threat intelligence. In addition, a team of security researchers often work directly with customers to gain insight into security incidents affecting Microsoft Azure customers, with the goal of constantly improving Security Center detection and alerting capabilities.

In the previous blog post "How Azure Security Center helps reveal a Cyberattack", security researchers detailed the stages of one real-world attack campaign that began with a brute force attack detected by Security Center and the steps taken to investigate and remediate the attack. In this post, we’ll focus on an Azure Security Center detection that led researchers to discover a ring of mining activity, which made use of a well-known bitcoin mining algorithm named Cryptonight.

Before we get into the details, let’s quickly explain some terms that you’ll see throughout this blog. “Bitcoin Miners” are...

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The smartphone is by far the world’s favorite piece of technology. It is estimated that there will be over 2 billion smartphones across the world by next year (ref: eMarketer). Over 80 percent of these smartphones run on Android operating system (data: IDC, 2015 Q2). Nowadays, smartphones are literally miniaturized computers, their processors pack anywhere between 1 GHz to 2.7 GHz processing power which is on par with a decent low-range/mid-range laptop currently in the market. Processing power of these devices come to use only while playing games or running few process intensive applications. But it can be put to use for other purposes as well. For example, altcoin mining.

Theoretically the processing power possessed by smartphones can be harnessed to mine cryptocurrencies. While mining bitcoin using the currently available smartphones is out of question, there are many altcoins that could be mined effectively on these handhelds. However, it may not be as effective as it...

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Does your computer seem to running much slower than usual? If so, someone may be using your computer’s processing power to mine bitcoins.

This is precisely what bitcoin mining viruses do, yet many of them can be detected with antivirus programs. Malwarebytes is highly recommended for this purpose. Whether your antivirus program is Malwarebytes which we recommend or something else, running a scan every so often will allay infection concerns.

Another way to detect bitcoin malware is by looking at the processes running on your PC. In Windows, hold down the Ctrl and Alt keys while pressing Delete. This will give you the following menu:

Select Start Task Manager from the list of options.

In the Task Manager, select the Processes tab as shown above. Check for any that have unfamiliar names, use a lot of memory or a high percentage of the CPU. You can sort the list by memory and CPU usage by clicking the CPU and Mem Usage column bars at...

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Dirk Merkel continues his introduction to Bitcoin with a look at the Bitcoin network as a system. He briefly explains the mechanics of transactions, blocks, and the block chain, as well as the Bitcoin wallet. He also discusses double-spending and Bitcoin mining, two controversial aspects of Bitcoin.

Having seen how Bitcoin is used (in Part 1) we're ready to look at some of its underlying concepts as a technology and network. This article introduces the mechanics of Bitcoin's core components: transactions, blocks, and the block chain. I also demystify controversial aspects of Bitcoin such as encryption (added in v0.4 of the standard client), the problem of double-spending, and how and why Bitcoin mining happens. Finally, I use Bitcoin Block Explorer to extract some data that I then use to gauge the overall health of the Bitcoin economy today.

To get started, consider Figure 1, which illustrates the relationship between the block chain, individual blocks, and...

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Just in time for IoT Day, the Mirai botnet is launching attacks with a new trick up its sleeve. In February, the Mirai malware began leveraging a Windows Trojan to widen its distribution. On the heels of our paper “Weaponizing the Internet of Things,” published last week, IBM X-Force recently uncovered a new variant of the ELF Linux/Mirai malware that has a new twist: a built-in bitcoin mining component.

Bobbing for Bitcoins

The Mirai botnet was developed for two primary purposes: to identify and compromise Internet of Things (IoT) devices to grow the botnet, and to perform distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks against predefined targets. As described in our report, several successful attacks have been launched using this botnet within the past year. The ELF Linux/Mirai malware variant was first discovered in August 2016 by white-hat security research group MalwareMustDie.

This new variant of ELF Linux/Mirai malware with the bitcoin mining component has...

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If you are about to explore Bitcoin, there are a few things you should know. Bitcoin lets you exchange money in a different way than with usual banks. As such, you should take time to inform yourself before using Bitcoin for any serious transaction. Bitcoin should be treated with the same care as your regular wallet, or even more in some cases!

Securing your wallet

Like in real life, your wallet must be secured. Bitcoin makes it possible to transfer value anywhere in a very easy way and it allows you to be in control of your money. Such great features also come with great security concerns. At the same time, Bitcoin can provide very high levels of security if used correctly. Always remember that it is your responsibility to adopt good practices in order to protect your money. Read more about securing your wallet.

Bitcoin price is volatile

The price of a bitcoin can unpredictably increase or decrease over a short period of time due to its young economy,...

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GHash, a mining pool operated by the anonymous, purportedly Russian-owned, achieved 55% of the total network mining power for about a 24 hour span. There is much panic, confusion and even denial around what a majority miner can do, may want to do, and will do.

Just as we predicted, some people are trying to shift the narrative to "OK, GHash may have a 51% majority, but they'd be crazy to launch a 51% attack, it would be counter to their interests." This argument is dead, killed by empirical data -- anyone who tries to recycle this argument in a post-51%-GHash world is at best misled. There are lots of attack types that are available to a 51%er, many of them quite subtle, and the participants do not conform to simplistic models.

The Bitcoin community seems to have a limited understanding of the attacks that a 51%er can launch. This is evident from Gavin's official response, which claims that there are "only two" attacks: (1) double-spends, and (2) wholesale...

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For the past eight months, I have been more than a little interested — and involved — in Bitcoin and Litecoin mining on Mac OS X. I have authored many how-to articles for Bitcoin and Litecoin mining. I also maintain several repositories for running popular mining software, cgminer and bfgminer, on OS X. I work closely with the authors of both projects ensuring that new builds are up-to-date and functional on OS X.

But I’ve been up to more than that in the world of crypto-currency. The truth is, if you want to do scrypt mining (the algorithm using by Litecoin) then you do not want to use a Mac. They may be okay to try this sort of thing out (and are fine for ASIC mining Bitcoins), but scrypt mining is very hard on a GPU and things get very hot very fast. Not only are you likely to damage your hardware, but you will never get the sort of hashing performance you get out of a purpose-built machine. The best way to go about things is to build an open-air Windows or Linux...

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One of the biggest problems I ran into when I was looking to start mining Bitcoin for investment and profit was most of the sites were written for the advanced user. I am not a professional coder, I have no experience with Ubuntu, Linux and minimal experience with Mac. So, this is for the individual or group that wants to get started the easy way.

1. Get a Bitcoin mining rig

Bitcoin mining is a very competitive niche to get into. As more and more miners come on board with the latest mining hardware the difficulty to mine increases each day. Before even starting out with Bitcoin mining you need to do your due diligence. This means you need to find out if Bitcoin mining is even profitable for you.

The best way to do this is through the use of a Bitcoin mining calculator. Just enter the data of the Bitcoin miner you are planning on buying and see how long it will take you to break even or make a profit. However, I can tell you from the get go that if you don’t...

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When mining began, regular off-the-shelf PCs were fast enough to generate bitcoins. That's the way the system was set up—easier to mine in the beginning, harder to mine as more bitcoins are generated. Over the last few years, miners have had to move on to faster hardware in order to keep generating new bitcoins. Today, application-specific integrated circuits (ASIC) are being used. Programmer language aside, all this means is that the hardware is designed for one specific task—in this case mining.

New faster hardware is being created by various mining start-ups at a rapid rate and the price tag for a full mining rig—capable of discovering new bitcoins on its own—currently costs in the ballpark of $12,000.

(Read more: How to make your email as stealth as Edward Snowden)

There is a way around such a hefty investment: joining mining pools. Pools are a collective group of bitcoin miners from around the globe who literally pool their computer power together to...

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Should I Start Mining Bitcoin?

I talk to a lot of people about Bitcoin. Most of the time I’m explaining to people what it is and how it works. It seems that the part of the conversation that almost always captures the imaginations of people is the process of mining. I can completely understand why, though. When I first heard about Bitcoin it was the itch to mine that hooked me. It’s not hard to see why, either. As I mentioned in my Educational post, What Is Bitcoin Mining?, I was a big fan of SETI@Home back in college. But that was me donating my computer to a cause while I wasn’t using it and, at best, getting a neat looking screensaver. The idea of setting my computer to do a mundane, routine task and getting paid for it flashed Bitcoin signs in my eyes.

Most people, when they hear about Bitcoin mining, think of it the same way I did when I first heard about it: free money. As with most things Bitcoin, however, there’s a lot more to it than that. Bitcoin mining is,...

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BITCLUB NETWORK is not owned by any single person or entity, they are a team of experts, entrepreneurs, professionals, network marketers, and programming geeks who have all come to together to launch a very simple business around a very complex industry. Anyone can join BitClub Network and begin earning a passive income by taking advantage of their expertise in Bitcoin mining and other Bitcoin related services.

BitClub Network is a community of people who have come together to support Bitcoin and other digital currencies. They are helping to educate, provide services for, secure, protect, and ultimately profit from this emerging technology. So far this community has created one of the largest mining pools in the world.

They have combined the power of crowd funding to bring you a very unique and timely opportunity in the Bitcoin industry. By using...

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Last time we had seen how fake Bitcoin Money Adder software’s are luring people into SCAM. On the contrary, BitCoins cannot be earned with Software’s that promise Instant Bitcoin Money without doing any Work. In this post we will see how exactly Bitcoin System works and how you can earn Bitcoins.

Bitcoin is a virtual currency that uses a peer-to-peer system to confirm transactions through public key cryptography Model, which maintains records of every single transaction and fairly transparent. Bitcoin is not issued or backed by a government or a business, it runs on computer code on a decentralized network.

With the Increasing popularity of Bitcoin and being pretty hard to Mine, Users are adopting unethical ways to mine them and hackers are continuously targeting the network to hack the Mining pools. Let us see how Bitcoin Works and the legitmet ways to Mine(earn) Bitcoins.

How Bitcoin Work?

The Math behind Bitcoin says that to transfer Bitcoins you...

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How private is Bitcoin? On the one hand, it is entirely anonymous. On the other, it is completely transparent and trackable. How can that be – and what does it mean for privacy?

Incumbent Bitcoin exchange Mt Gox recently imposed authentication rules on people trading fiat currencies on its network. The rules – which didn't apply to people trading only in bitcoins – require people to verify their identities. There may not be any such requirements on native bitcoin users yet, but it highlights the issue of privacy. Many people using Bitcoin don’t want others to know who they are. The question is whether they're able to hide that information.

Bitcoin could be interpreted as a 'pseudo-anonymous' network. It is anonymous in the sense that you can hold a Bitcoin address without revealing anything about your identity in that address. One person could hold multiple addresses, and in theory, there would be nothing to link those addresses together, or to indicate that the...

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A botnet is a collection of internet-connected devices, which may include PCs, servers, mobile devices and internet of things devices that are infected and controlled by a common type of malware. Users are often unaware of a botnet infecting their system.

Infected devices are controlled remotely by threat actors, often cybercriminals, and are used for specific functions, so the malicious operations stay hidden to the user. Botnets are commonly used to send email spam, engage in click fraud campaigns and generate malicious traffic for distributed denial-of-service attacks.

The term botnet is derived from the words robot and network. A bot in this case is a device infected by malware, which then becomes part of a network, or net, of infected devices controlled by a single attacker or attack group.

The botnet malware typically looks for vulnerable devices across the internet, rather than targeting specific individuals, companies or industries. The objective for...

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