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Crypto Mining Malware Exploit Kobe Bryant’s Passing

On January 26, 2020, the world lost one of its most beloved sporting icons. Kobe Bryant was undoubtedly one of the most influential people of this generation and all of us here at CoolBitX and the CoolWallet S team were shocked and saddened by his passing. We mourn with everyone, worldwide, at the loss of an icon both on and off the court. 

Shockingly though, cybercriminals have immediately exploited his death to line their pockets. To celebrate his life many fans have downloaded a Kobe Bryant wallpaper, according to Microsoft, that contains a malicious coin mining malware script embedded within it. It really is unfortunate and shocking that these criminals felt the need to take advantage of unsuspecting victims who just wanted something to memorialize their hero.

The Kobe Bryant wallpaper that contains malicious code.

What is a Coin Mining Script?

A coin mining script is a line of code embedded on a website or file that will utilize the victim’s CPU to mine cryptocurrency. Those infected with the malware will usually experience an overall decrease in performance with their computers. A telltale sign that you have been infected is if you notice an increase in usage of  your computer’s fans or if your computer gets abnormally hot under normal circumstances.

How do I Delete the Coin Mining Script?

Luckily, coin mining scripts can be easily circumvented. If you find yourself on a website that uses a coin mining script, you can simply close the website. We also recommend clearing any cache or cookies from the website and restarting the browser just to be sure. If you, by any chance, downloaded a Kobe Bryant wallpaper and have noticed a slowdown on your computer, all you have to do is delete the wallpaper and empty it out of your Trash or Recycle Bin. A computer reset would also help.

How to Avoid Coin Mining Scripts

Unfortunately, this is not the first time cybercriminals have used celebrity photos to mine coins from fans all over the world. First off, the easiest way to avoid falling into this trap would be to only visit and download from reputable and secure websites. Also, ensure that your computer or device’s antivirus security programs and operating system stay updated. 

As much as we’d love to elaborate on how much of an impact he had on us through his dedication and hard work on and off the court, we felt it was more important to first spread awareness of this heinous act. It shows that cybercriminals will sink to any disgusting level to steal and loot cryptocurrencies. Nothing is sacred to them, and knowing this, crypto users and investors need to always take appropriate measures to protect themselves. 

Kobe said it best when he said “Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.”

Let’s use this opportunity to rise up together and make sure we continue to keep each other informed and safe. Our hearts go out to his family and the other families affected by this terrible helicopter tragedy.

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