Avast, a global leader in digital security and privacy, has discovered an online community of minors constructing, exchanging and spreading malware, including ransomware and a mix of information stealers and cryptominers. The group lures young users by advertising access to different malware builders and tool kits that allow laypeople to construct malware easily. In some cases, people have to buy access to the malware builder tool in order to join the group, and in others, they can become group members where they are offered the tool for a nominal fee of 5 to 25 Euros. The community uses dedicated Discord servers as a discussion board and selling place to spread malware families such as “Lunar”, “Snatch”, or “Rift”, which follow the current trend of malware-as-a-service. More information: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/minors-use-discord-servers-to-earn-extra-pocket-money-through-spreading-malware-301576652.html
The example that researchers at Avast discovered recently shows how cybercriminals are constantly looking at new ways of targeting victims. The use of minors to carry out these types of attack isn’t new, but what might appear to be a bit of fun is a very serious criminal matter that can have widespread consequences, including prison.
It’s essential that parents have regular conversations with their children about using the internet. Even something as simple as changing their settings to avoid them receiving messages from strangers can make a big difference to their online safety. Keeping passwords and other personal information secure can also help avoid these types of attacks.