Metamask, Binance Chain Wallet, Coinbase Wallet, and over 40 other browser extension wallets are at risk from new malware designed to steal crypto, reports CoinTelegraph.
Crypto wallets that are browser-based have been notoriously susceptible to security attacks but remain popular for their ease of use. The new malware, dubbed Mars Stealer by its developers, is a highly upgraded version of the Oski trojan from 2019, according to a security researcher who goes by 3xp0rt.
MetaMask, Nifty Wallet, Coinbase Wallet, MEW CX, Binance Chain Wallet, and TronLink are some of the popular browser-based wallets targeted, but the malware also goes after two-factor authentication extensions and has an extension built in to steal a user’s private keys.
Mars Stealer, because of its ability to target extensions on Chromium-based browsers, means that Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Brave are all susceptible. Opera and Firefox cannot be targeted by the extension-based attacks, but they are susceptible to credential theft.
The malware is spread through torrent, file-hosting websites, and other downloading sources, and is also being sold for $140 on dark web forums. The malware first checks for the native language of the system and will leave without attacking anything if the language ID is that of Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Belarus, or Russia. If the language is of any other country, the malware goes after the file that holds a user’s sensitive information such as private keys and crypto wallet addresses and then leaves and erases any trace of its presence.
Investing in Crypto Without the Risk of Direct Exposure
For investors who are interested in investing in the innovation of the crypto economy but do not want the risk of direct exposure or holding spot currency in crypto wallets, the Bitwise Crypto Industry Innovators ETF (BITQ) could be a good solution. BITQ offers investment into some of the largest companies within crypto in a variety of segments.
BITQ tracks the Bitwise Crypto Innovators 30 Index, an index with at least 85% allocation into companies that are cryptocurrency exchanges carrying bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, crypto miners, mining equipment companies, and service providers. The remaining 15% is allocated to large-cap support companies with at least one major part of their businesses dedicated to crypto.
BITQ carries crypto companies such as Silvergate Capital (SI), a bank that provides services for crypto exchanges, at 10.75%; Coinbase Global Inc (COIN), a popular crypto exchange at 9.65%; and crypto mining companies such as Hut 8 Mining (HUT) at 4.95%.
The fund has an expense ratio of 0.85% and net assets of nearly $100 million.
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