Opportunistic cybercriminals are taking advantage of the death of basketball legend Kobe Bryant earlier this week by setting traps for those looking for memorabilia of the star. According to a Tweeter by Microsoft Security Intelligence on January 31, hackers hide malicious html code containing cryptojacking script in the all-time NBA wallpaper.
Cryptojacking is a practice whereby cybercriminals divert processing power from other computers to mine cryptocurrency remotely.
Following the tragic helicopter crash that claimed the lives of Byrant, her 13-year-old daughter and seven other occupants, the star has garnered increased interest from fans and the general public.
Unsurprisingly, it didn’t take long for cybercriminals to take advantage of it. A growing number of people looking for information and images of the star is just a new crop of potential victims.
The Microsoft team found the malicious html file, Trojan: HTML / Brocoiner.N! Lib with its Defender Virus Protection software. The coin mining script was disguised as a wallpaper with an image of Bryant. The website hosting the coin miner has been blocked by the software.
Remember or cash in?
As Cointelegraph reported, Bryant’s death sparked a wave of grief on social media, including a personal account from Tron founder Justin Sun. Bryant was a strong supporter of crypto, and Tron in particular, having discussed the future of blockchain with Sun onstage at the niTROn conference in 2019.
In a show of respect, Sun announced that this year’s niTROn conference will be dedicated to the star. However, given Sun’s track record of questionable promotional methods, some on social media were quick to criticize the move as a shameless cash-in.