JOHANNESBURG- Thousands of websites, including ones run by United States and British government agencies, were infected for several hours on Sunday with code that causes web browsers to secretly mine digital currencies.
It is reported that over 4,200 sites were infected with a malicious version of a widely used tool known as Browsealoud from British software maker Texthelp, which reads out webpages for people with vision problems.
The news comes as a surge in cyber attacks using software that forces infected computers to mine crypto currencies on behalf of hackers.
There has been an increase of this prevalence in recent months as the volume of trading in bitcoin and other crypto currencies has surged. But the tainted version of Browsealoud caused inserted software that allows mining the digital currency Monero to run on computers that visited infected sites, generating money for the hackers behind the attack.
US and British law enforcement agency representatives and Texthelp could not immediately be reached for comment.
Texthelp, however, said it had shut down the operation by disabling Browsealoud while its engineering team investigated.
Photo Credit- IT Security Place