By: Lynnette Chow, Head of Marketing, Sentinel Protocol
In recent years, cyberattacks have become a very serious issue for both individuals and big businesses. In fact, governments around the world have reacted to this issue by introducing new data privacy laws in 2018.
According to a recent FTSE 350 Cyber Governance survey, nearly every large company (96%) claims to have a cybersecurity strategy in place. Less than half (46%) of these companies support their strategies with a dedicated budget. What’s even more alarming is that only one in eight (16%) say that they have a comprehensive understanding of the potential impact, loss, or disruption should a cyberattack happen.
Image credit: FTSE 350 Cyber Governance Health Check 2018 (report link)
Since the advent of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, a new cyberattack vector has been emerging: cryptojacking . Over the past several months, we have seen frequent news about this new cybercrime. Anyone with a digital device is vulnerable to cryptojacking, where hackers steal the CPU resources of your laptop or PC in order to mine cryptocurrencies.
According to Cisco’s security researchers at RSAC 2019, college campuses in the U.S. are the second largest cryptocurrency miners after the energy and utility sectors. New research findings show that cryptomining is highly prevalent anywhere, across all industries and organizations of all sizes. All businesses and universities should be on the watch for unsanctioned mining of cryptocurrencies, which can also be defined as cryptojacking.
Image credit: Cisco Umbrella — Check your electric Bill (report link)
So how do you fight cryptojacking?
Apart from the usual cybersecurity practices, any individual or business can use a crowdsourced Threat Reputation Database to validate information in real time. Like web application firewalls, the TRDB maintains whitelists of safe URLs and domains along with blacklists of malicious URLs and online addresses.
In Seoul, South Korea, a couple of weeks ago, we were sharing the benefits of working with a blockchain-based threat intelligence platform that crowdsources information about the latest cybersecurity threats. At the Cryptocurrency Exchange Security Seminar with Professor Heejo Lee of Korea University and Hyeoncheol Jeong, CEO of Norma, we discussed the future of cybersecurity with regards to cryptocurrencies. We concluded that it is no longer an afterthought. Cybersecurity companies are now working together to deliver stronger protections on crypto assets along with a more secure user experience for everyone. Lee agreed that cybersecurity technology not only needs to be more effective in preventing fraud and financial crime but also easy to use for the general public.
We also participated in a cybersecurity meetup with KeySupreme, a company that provides authentication-as-a-service to businesses who need to boost cybersecurity for their employees and customers. Marc Raphael, CEO of KeySupreme, discussed current methods of authentication and whether they provide adequate cybersecurity protection. Marc said they don’t provide sufficient protection from increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks, so we need to move to the next generation of authentication technology — namely Authentication 2.0.
Since then, we have announced new security partnerships with BITBERRYand Bizkey. Bizkey, based in Singapore, is a pioneer for real-world crypto transactions. Bizkey is a smart blockchain-based payment platform that supports powerful applications to integrate retail into the digital economy. BITBERRY is an integrated wallet solution with enterprise solutions that support compensation paid in cryptocurrency. They were launched by Dunamu’s subsidiary, Rootone Soft. Dunamu is the brains behind Upbit, one of South Korea’s largest crypto exchange.
Our easy-to-use solutions such as the Crypto Analysis and Tracking Visualization (CATV) tool, a key feature of the decentralized Threat Reputation Database (TRDB), gives users the ability to track the movement of stolen cryptocurrencies in real-time. Organizations including cryptocurrency exchanges can also integrate Sentinel Protocol’s ICF API into their financial software applications to protect digital assets from malicious threats.
Companies are acutely aware of the importance of protecting their customers and employees from increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks. As some individuals know all too well, security holes in online applications and compromised identities have led to painful losses of digital assets not just in the crypto space, but also in the conventional finance space.
Businesses, universities, and even government agencies in South Korea are congregating to cybersecurity seminars to learn how to shore up security against fraud and malicious attacks.