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Technology Hackers infect Android phones, TVs to mine cryptocurrency

15:07  07 february  2018
15:07  07 february  2018 Source:   cnet.com

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a close up of a logo: Photo of a key with its tip pointing upward, with a blurry circuit board in the background. Hackers infected smart TVs and phones and used them to mine for Monero, a cryptocurrency, researchers found.© Provided by CNET Photo of a key with its tip pointing upward, with a blurry circuit board in the background. Hackers infected smart TVs and phones and used them to mine for Monero, a cryptocurrency, researchers found. Hackers have infected thousands of Android phones and smart TVs, turning the devices into miners for a popular cryptocurrency, researchers at Chinese cybersecurity firm Netlab360 found.

The attack affected 7,000 devices in China, which were hacked into a network that harnessed the processing power of the connected devices to mine, or digitally create, the Monero cryptocurrency, according to ZDNet. Though not as big as some recent botnets, security experts say this approach will increasingly be used by hackers looking to make money off of other people's computers, IoT devices, phones and tablets.

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  UNICEF recruits gamers to mine cryptocurrency for Syrian kids It hopes to appeal to young people's desire to do social good.Game Chaingers uses your graphics card's power to mine for cryptocurrency, which then goes straight to UNICEF's account. Of course, the more participants there are, the more coins it can mine -- if the hundreds of millions of gamers around the world help out, the organization can raise a considerable amount. UNICEF says it created the project out of a need to find new donors, since most of its benefactors are already over 50. By asking to borrow PCs' processing power instead of straight-out appealing for cash, even those who wouldn't usually give to charities could contribute.

Netlab360 said the attack took advantage of an open port, a part of the operating system that allows a device to communicate with the internet. Hackers searched for devices connected through port 5555, which helped them find unsecured Android phones and TVs. They then infected them with malicious software, known as a worm, that looked for more devices to infect.

Google, which owns the Android mobile software, didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

The researchers told ZDNet the hackers weren't opening the port themselves, which would have been a much more worrying attack. "The 5555 ADB interfaces of those devices have already been opened before [they're] infected," the researchers said. "We have no idea about how and when this port was opened yet."

The hackers used the network of infected devices to run a program that mines for more Monero. The botnet gives hackers the computing power of thousands of devices without the costs associated with buying hardware, power or internet access.

Google gives Gmail the Android Go treatment to save data and storage .
Last December, Google launched Android Go, a lightweight operating system for less capable phones typically used in places like India and Indonesia. The company has also been creating apps for these less-capable phones, too, including YouTube Go and a Go-enabled Assistant. Now Google has Gmail Go, a Gmail client made to use less data and storage space for lower end Android phones.Users will still get the smart inbox behavior of the regular Gmail app, 15 GB of free storage space and support for both IMAP and POP email protocols. According to TechCrunch, several reports show the app coming in as a 9.

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