Cryptojacking! A Beginner’s Guide

Cryptojacking! A Beginner’s Guide

Cryptojacking can be called as a malicious form of crypto mining, where the end user which has been affected by the malware does not realize it for long or ever

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Cryptocurrencies which are stored on different exchanges have always been a target of hackers, who try to get their way into the exchange and steal people's digital asset through various hacking techniques, double-spending being a prominent reason.

However, over the years people got fed up with these nuisances and they started using offline or hardware wallets to protect their digital assets. Now, hackers have found a new way to expand their portfolio known as crypto jacking.

This article would answer various questions on what is crypto jacking and act as your beginner's guide to understand the problem in depth.
"Cryptojacking can be called as a malicious form of crypto mining, where the end user which has been affected by the malware does not realize it for long or ever. Kaspersky has already predicted crypto jacking as one of the worst forms of malware attack and it's not that easy to detect."


What is Cryptojacking?
If you are aware of how cryptocurrency function and works, you must be aware of the cryptocurrency mining process. It is a process by which people verify transactions on a network, and earn block rewards in return.
Mining was aimed at maintaining the decentralization aspect of the Blockchain technology and also earning some cryptocurrency for doing the same. As time progressed, mining difficulty increased and the hash power required to mine a block increased as well.
Now what hackers did was, they attracted people over the internet through click-bait and installed malware into their browser without the user's consent. Now this malware extract whatever hash power your computer is capable of generating and using it to mine cryptocurrency and the end user bearing all the energy consumption cost
The two main forms of malware used are,
In-script mining malware
Adding Javascript based browser extension.

These hackers are smart and they concentrated on more anonymous coins like Zcash and Monero which are fairly difficult to track.

"Since CPU mining and GPU mining have turned unprofitable in the wake of bearish market trends throughout 2018, these hackers have started to target Mining farms, which has an assembly of hundreds of mining rigs combined to make at least some profit".


How to Avoid Being a Victim of CryptoJacking?

"The worst part about the crypto jacking is, its fairly next to impossible to realize that you are the victim, and even if you figure out, it's already too late. Hopefully, over the years the developers are able to find a counter to such nuisances, however till then as a crypto enthusiast, you must follow the policy of "Prevention is better than cure"


Let us see what all prevention measures you can take to avoid being a victim of crypto jacking.

1. Install an AD-Blocker
Ad-Blockers are not just meant for you to avoid YouTube ads, but it can help you prevent many unnecessary cookies and click-bait ads from creating any dialogue boxes on your browser. There are a plethora of Ad-blockers on chrome store which you can download and become much safer against malware attacks.

2. Install a Good Anti-Malware software
There are multiple anti-malware software applications that are available in the market, but most of their database does not get updated in time to detect potential new malware. So, make use even if you are buying a good anti-malware software, it gets the timely update and has an updated database.

3. Update Your Firewall Regularly
The in-built firewall in your computer acts as a screen between your PC and the internet, so make sure the settings have been rightly configured, and keep the security level at maximum. The more secure your firewall is, the lesser chances a hacker has to install the crypto jacking malware.

Conclusion
Crypto Jacking has already been a cause of a headache for most of the people related to cryptocurrencies throughout 2018. As much as half of the crypto community was affected by the nuisance at one point or other. The problem was so severe that it surpassed another great nuisance called ransomware.

The anonymous cryptocurrencies like Monero which use multiple nodes deflection to hide the transactions and make it almost impossible to trace. Monero has already gained a sore eye from the law enforcement agencies. As the Distributed Ledger technology gets refined over years, hopefully, we will have a complete hacker-proof Blockchain ecosystem.

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21 BuzzFeed Quizzes To Take When You're Trying To Procrastinate

Why study when you could be on BuzzFeed?
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According to my previous article, 12 Things That Are Only Acceptable In College, spending 2.5 hours taking BuzzFeed quizzes is completely acceptable if you're in college. With it being that time of the semester when the list of things to do is never ending, sometimes it's easier to just ignore your problems and spend your studying time procrastinating. If this sounds like something you need to do, here's the ultimate list of quizzes to waste your time on.

1. Reply To Your Crush's Texts And We'll Reveal Your Future

Wondering what you're going to do with your life since you're probably going to fail that exam that you have tomorrow? After all, you are taking BuzzFeed quizzes right now instead of studying. This quiz will answer that question for you.

2. Which "Gossip Girl" Character Are You Based On These Random Questions?

This one's a classic that you just can't possibly skip.

3. Build A School Uniform And We'll Guess Who You Were In High School

If you're like me, you always secretly wished you had a uniform in high school so that you didn't have to pick out an outfit every morning. Now you can live out that dream and find out what it says about you.

4. We Can Guess Your Age After You Build Your Own Dream Home

If I got 70's, does that mean I have timeless taste or terrible taste?

5. Pretend To Go Shopping And We’ll Figure Out If You’re More Ann Taylor Or Ann Taylor: Loft

Ladies, this is an important one.

6. Plan Your Day And Find Out Which "Grey's Anatomy" Girl You Are

Maybe if whatever you're doing right now isn't working out, you could become a doctor...

7. Create A Makeup Look And We'll Tell You Which Hogwarts House You Truly Belong In

Or you could become a wizard.

8. Pick An Outfit And We Will Tell You What You Do For A Living

And if neither of those work out, this quiz will tell you exactly what you should do.

9. Spend All Your Money At This Drug Store And We'll Tell You What You Should Be Doing With Your Life

And in case you didn't like either of the previous suggestions, you can see if this one is any better.

10. Build A Dream Castle And We'll Tell You What Type Of Unicorn You Are

Since unicorn everything seems to be the rage right now, you'd better keep up.

11. This Reverse Word Association Test Will Uncover Your Personality Type

This one's for those of you who don't have the patience to get through the Myers-Briggs test.

12. Design Your Future Backyard And We'll Reveal How Many Kids You'll Have

If you're going to have more than 2 you better get back to work so you can support them.

13. Pick An Outfit From Patagonia And We'll Tell You How Long You'd Survive In The Wild

Find out if running away to the wild is really a better option than struggling through that 10 page paper that's due at 8 am tomorrow.

14. Which Character From "The Office" Are You At YOUR Job?

Let's hope you don't get Kevin.

15. Which Meryl Streep Character Is Actually Most Like You?

Are you as mean as Miranda Priestly?

16. Take This Picture Test And We'll Tell You Your Best And Worst Qualities

No need to prepare for your next interview, just give them these answers.

17. What Kind of Bathroom Guest Are You

Are you actually a terrible guest?

18. What % Gross Are You Actually?

Or maybe you're just gross in general.

19. Your Food Preferences Will Reveal Which TV Character You Are

Are you more Blair Waldorf or Michelle Tanner?

20. What Grade Are You Getting In Life?

Are you literally failing at life right now?

21. What Type Of Emoji Are You?

Instead of a signature scent, you can have a signature emoji!

And if these didn't take you long enough, you can always check out BuzzFeed for more.

P.S. Good luck studying for that exam. Maybe you can find a quiz that tells you how to ace it.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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The Fake World - My Personal Experience On Instagram

Body Dysmorphia, Followers, and Posting Photos—How can Instagram NOT affect my mental health.

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The sticker on Kendall Jenner's phone says, "social media seriously harms your mental health." Despite her heavy presence online, she and many others are taking steps towards pointing out the dangers of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and other social media.

While it may seem like a source of inspiration, social media (Instagram in particular), seems to be causing people like me more negativity than anything else.

"People like me…", what does this mean? I am a 19-year-old female college student with serious body dysmorphia. By definition, body dysmorphia is "a distinct mental disorder in which a person is preoccupied with an imagined physical defect or a minor defect that others often cannot see." Those with the disorder often perceive themselves as ugly or obsess over ways to improve their physical appearance.

I grew up in the ballet world—one that emphasizes your weight and bases a large amount of success on attaining a specific body type. The ideal silhouette is long, willowy, and malnourished-looking. I have a more muscular build for a ballet dancer. Some days I see myself as a beautiful person on the inside and out, and other days I am the complete opposite.

My body dysmorphia comes and goes, but I know this: every time I open the Instagram app, I become consumed with my physical appearance and attaining the perfect body. I end up in a comparison game that I did not sign up for, obsessing over my imperfections and ultimately feeling unhappy despite all the blessings I have been given.

I initially created an Instagram to follow the trends—everyone at the time (when I was in middle school and high school in the 2010s) had an account and posted cool, artsy photos. I wanted to join in because I liked being behind the camera. Soon enough, however, Instagram started to place emphasis on being in front of the camera and now, seems to be a competition about who can look the best and show the most skin. As someone who is not always comfortable in her own skin no matter the outfit, it becomes quite the struggle to keep up with the followers, likes, comments, and appearance of being confident.

It was not until this year that I started to realize "the fake" in just about every photo on my feed. The "Instagram models," real-life models, and others post constantly because it brings fame, attention, and for some, confidence. I applaud anyone who believes Instagram is a positive in their lives, but many people that I know feel the same way I do—even without explicitly saying so. I am constantly reminding myself that people pay to have their photos edited. There are other apps like Facetune which are designed to alter the real-you into Instagram-you. I believe Instagram is wishful thinking—wishing you really look like what you post. While I take part in the comparison game, comparing every part of my body to famous models, I do not take part in the paid editing game. I do not have apps that will give me a jawline or thinner legs. I do not have an app that will change my face shape. I do not applaud myself on this, as I am more self-conscious than ever and have not posted a photo since February.

However, I am strong enough to know that the fake world on Instagram does not take into account real-life aspects like someone's charisma, personality, voice, behavior, etc. It does not guarantee you friends, likes, or happiness. It is taking a chance to put yourself out there, however you wish. It is up to you to interpret what you see and have a sense of your own self-worth.

With this being said, Instagram does come with some benefits. There are a few brave souls who are not afraid to post un-edited photos and who do bring awareness to the falseness and extreme editing. Instagram also comes with accounts not dedicated to selfies, but that serve as platforms for important causes such as human suffering, pollution of the earth, animal brutality, and the like.

Instagram is overwhelming with its positives and negatives, and it is up to me to decide what to believe and what to perceive as false. I find it helpful to take breaks from the app by logging out. Whenever I do decide to post next, I will do my best to post for ME, thinking about my own well-being and creating a positive message for all.

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