Hacking obviously has no age. Indeed, Avast computer security researchers have discovered that a group of children are selling malware on the Discord platform to make money.
If you’re a gamer, you might be familiar with Discord. The platform quickly established itself among gamer communities as the ideal service for discussing and sharing photos and videos online for free.
Unsurprisingly, the success of the platform has attracted the attention of hackers over the years. In December 2021, hackers managed to steal no less than 130,000 euros in cryptocurrencies via an NFT scam. A few months earlier, a study published by Sophos researchers showed that Discord had become a den for the distribution of malware.
Children use Discord… to sell malware!
And precisely, this new Avast report tends to confirm this trend. Indeed, the group’s researchers discovered the existence of a group that sells malware on Discord. And peculiarity of size, pirates are all… children!
Indeed, Avast cybersecurity experts have brought to light a server from which these miners were discussing creating, upgrading and the spread of malware families like Lunar, Snatch or Rift. The researchers quickly realized that these were children, due to the numerous mentions of their parents and teachers.
To join this group and become a potential malware-as-a-service user, one must pay a fee, which varies between 5 and 25 euros. Avast claims that a hundred users paid to access this group. Several types of malware are offered for sale:
- malware specialized in stealing passwords and personal data
- malware designed to exploit infected PCs to mine cryptocurrencies
- malware capable of launching ransomware
An illegal practice that can have serious repercussions
Regarding the distribution of this malware, these children use a method well known to hackers. They create a YouTube video promoting a hack for a popular software or gameand include a download link for the malware in the description.
As Avast points out, these young users see these activities as fun and are far from imagining the possible repercussions. “However, these activities are far from harmless, they are criminal. They can have significant personal and legal consequences, especially if the children expose their own identity and that of their family online or if the purchased malware actually infects the children’s computer, leaving their families vulnerable by letting them use the device. infected. Their data, including online accounts and bank details, can be leaked to cybercriminals,” conclude the researchers.