3 Ways to Protect Your Trading Computer from Cryptojackers

If you are a trader with an interest in cryptocurrency and you suddenly start noticing your trading computer is running slow, you should be suspicious. There is a new crime in town and it’s called cryptojacking. Cryptojacking is a form of cryptocurrency mining. Miners use your computer’s processing power to make money.

How Does Cryptojacking Work?

Cryptocurrency miners make money through providing computing power. For their efforts, miners get rewarded with new currencies. With increasing crypto prices, mining is a booming business. To keep up, miners need more computing resources. They need more hardware. But more hardware and computing time means infrastructure costs and high power bills. So miners have been looking for ways to minimize costs and maximize profits. They have solved their problem by hacking into other people’s computers. However, taking over computer resources is not easy. Modern operating systems have a lot of checks and balances. But all modern computers have web browsers that run JavaScript. So hackers have started to use JavaScript on web pages to run crypto-mining processes on remote computers. As soon as you hit a compromised web page, the JavaScript starts to run the crypto-mining process. Hackers don’t need your permission to run these scripts. Instantly, your trading computer becomes a moneymaker for the attacker. The good news is that your trading computer is not at risk. The bad news is that it’s making your computer run slower and running up your power bill. You might not even notice that your trading computer is taking a hit in performance or that you have a few dollars more on your power bill. However, it’s outrageous that somebody is using your property without your permission.

How to Prevent Cryptojacking

The first step in protecting yourself is to be aware of what an attack looks like. Basically, if you notice a big spike in CPU usage when you visit a particular site, then the site has a high probability of being a culprit. Here are some steps you can take as preventive measures:

1. Customize Ad Blocker

If you suspect in-browser mining, you can block the site using an ad blocker. For example, the CoinHive website is known for running cryptojacking algorithms. You can put the site on your ad blocker’s unsafe list. Also, the development community has come up with tools like No Coin and Coin-Hive Blocker. These tools can handle cryptojacking attempts. They generally come as browser extensions.

2. Disable JavaScript

As JavaScript is a way to attack computers, many traders have tried turning it off. Unfortunately, many websites use it. So getting rid of it isn’t practical. Instead, try turning it off selectively for sites you think are responsible for cryptojacking.

3. Install Anti-malware Software

When cryptojacking started, the anti-malware software products were caught off-guard. But since then, the products have improved. Today most anti-malware software can recognize and prevent the cryptojacking threat.

Staying Safe in the Future

Today it’s easy to set up preventive measures for cryptojacking. But the processes are evolving. The next generation of crypto mining tactics will be stronger and more complex. It will be harder to manage those new threats. Proactively monitoring your CPU usage will continue to be your first line of defense.
There are more trading computer tips like this in our buyers guide. Check out our “How To Buy a Trading Computer” e-book.
We hope today’s Quick Tip helped you. If you found this helpful, you’ll want to check out the other computer How-To’s I’ve created on this page. You can always call us if you have questions: 800-387-5250