As if websites trying to hijack visitors’ CPUs to mine digital currency wasn’t enough, a new report suggests that hackers have created malware that targets Facebook Messenger users in order to secretly mine the Monero digital currency. The malware is called Digmine and it was discovered by researchers at the Trend Micro cybersecurity firm. They claim that the malware is targeting as many machines as possible in order to mine Monero.
The researchers have also expressed concerns that the malware could enable attackers to completely take over a Facebook account.
The malware has been designed to look like a video file, according to Trend Micro, and that it only works when it’s spread using the desktop version of Facebook Messenger on Google Chrome.
If the infected file is opened via Messenger on another platform such as a mobile device, the malware won’t function so it will cause no harm.
Nevertheless, it still remains a risk as it can potentially enable hackers to take over the victim’s account. It may also slow down the machine and even use the victim’s Facebook account to target their friends.
“If the user’s Facebook account is set to log in automatically, Digmine will manipulate Facebook Messenger in order to send a link to the file to the account’s friends,” Trend Micro researchers claim.
Facebook Messenger users should certainly be careful about the links that they open. If they’ve received one from someone they don’t know, it’s always best to exercise caution.