Viruses on your Smart TV: this malware mines cryptocurrencies on TVs

Any device connected to the internet is subject to possible vulnerabilities and to being infected by a virus. This is a big issue on computers and mobile phones, but some attackers are now targeting Smart TVs with viruses. 90% of the TVs connected to Android are vulnerable.

Smart TVs can also have viruses

This has been discovered by ESET, one of the world’s biggest digital security companies and the creator of NOD32 antivirus. The company has used their presence on the MWC 2018 to launch ESET Smart TV Security, their security suite thought for smart tvs that use Android such as Sony’s models.

Televisions have more and more features that can be the target of cyberattacks, such as microphones or even cameras. With these, users can be spied on and confidential data can be stolen. Smart TVs with Android, like any mobile phone, are exposed to more security risks than other models with more limited operative systems, since an app with one of the dangerous permits can be installed.

The viruses that mine cryptocurrencies on Android have exploded and got into Smart TVs

You can find one of these malwares on the popular mining scripts for cryptocurrencies. When this happens on the computer, we have many ways to catch it, also they usually slow down the computer. Nevertheless, when it happens on the television, it is possible that we don’t even notice that it has a virus.

ESET has shown, at the MWC 2018, how a television can be infected with a cryptocurrency mining script and how its new antivirus detects it. This kind of malware is extending from computers to mobile phones given the huge amount of devices.

There are two types: ones that execute when we browse through websites and others that are directly included in applications. One example is on the game Bug Smasher, available on the Play Store sin November 2011 with between 1 to 5 million downloads until it was deleted in January 2018, when a framework was discovered on the app that mined Monero on the users’ mobile phones.

Other applications just want to substitute exchange portals, such as Poloniex, or pretend they are cryptocurrency wallets and they were focused on the Spanish market. Their creators falsified reviews, saying it worked fine. Others just said that they were mining coins like Monero or Ripple and input it to you, but the app developer was the one who received them.

ESET antivirus for Smart TV avoids the entrance of malware and has anti ransomware. It also analyzes any kind of device that we have connected to the television, like a USB memory. The premium version also has an antiphishing detector. This kind of solutions aren’t usually necessary if we are carefull with what we install and only use trustworthy sources such as the own developers website (in Kodi’s case), Google Play Store and APKMirror. Finally, we have to runaway from anything related to cryptocurrencies on the Play Store, especially if the apps promise to be a wallet or a free mining tool.

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