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Egypt Government’s Covert Monero mining project exposed by the researchers

Mar 10, 2018 Posted /  775 Views

Egypt Government’s Covert Monero mining project exposed by the researchers

Crypto-jacking, mining malware, and substantial power costs- Cryptocurrency mining and miners are now observed with the same substance of suspicion as any hacker would have been viewed with. As we are continuously hearing reports that mining operations are carried out without obtaining the consent of the users, it is getting hard to trust even the most reliable professionals.

In this scenario, a group of North American investigators has managed to detect the dubious mechanism used by the government of Egypt to mine Monero at the expense of its citizens with an essentially subliminal method. The study conducted by the Citizen Lab of the University of Toronto has explicated that the government of Egypt could have taken undue advantage of the citizens of their country to mine cryptocurrencies in questionable secrecy. Researchers say that this has been made possible by the program called AdHose.

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It has been reported that the government has been taking advantage of the leading telephone service company of the country called Telecom Egypt. It is being told that in this network, the government could have placed deep packet inspection (DPI) middleboxes to redirect citizens' Internet connections to advertisements that contained mining software.

According to the study, mining with AdHose takes place in two ways- one method is called ‘dew’ in which users are directed to short ads, and another mechanism is called ‘drip’ in which the users are redirected to sites that are no longer enabled. The dew mode is less employed because it could be detected more simply. Nonetheless, the drip method is persistently being used in operations, as the researching company reveals-

"We found similar middleboxes at a Telecom Egypt demarcation point. The middleboxes were being used to redirect users across dozens of ISPs to affiliate ads and browser cryptocurrency mining scripts. The Egyptian scheme, which we call AdHose, has two modes. In spray mode, AdHose redirects Egyptian users en masse to ads for short periods of time. In trickle mode, AdHose targets some JavaScript resources and defunct websites for ad injection. AdHose is likely an effort to raise money covertly."

This system was developed by the Canadian company called Sandvine. There are interests to AdHose than using for mining, as it also works as a tool of censorship to divest citizens of different countries access to specific pages of human rights, news, and politics.

In Egypt itself, these kinds of devices were being utilized to obstruct multifold of human rights, political, and news which specifically include Human Rights Watch, Reporters Without Borders, Al Jazeera, Mada Masr, and HuffPost Arabic. In neighboring Turkey, these devices were being employed to block websites including Wikipedia, and the Dutch Broadcast Foundation (NOS) 'site, and an obvious one of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

Monero is one digital currency which is specifically mined using this method and is usually identified for allowing high levels of privacy.  Monero has also witnessed high volatility in its price in recent weeks, perhaps the product of a future bifurcation that will result in the blockchain of MoneroV.

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Tags: Egypt Covert Monero Monero mining mine Monero

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