Cybercriminals Actively Target VMware vSphere with Cryptominers

VMware’s container-based application development environment has become attractive to cyberattackers.

Organizations running sophisticated virtual networks with VMware’s vSphere service are actively being targeted by cryptojackers, who have figured out how to inject the XMRig commercial cryptominer into the environment, undetected.

Uptycs’ Siddharth Sharma has released research showing threat actors are using malicious shell scripts to make modifications and run the cryptominer on vSphere virtual networks.

“Cryptojacking campaigns mostly target the systems having high-end resources,” Sharma pointed out. “In this campaign as we saw the attackers tried to register the XMRig miner itself as a service (daemon), which runs whenever the system gets rebooted.”

To avoid detection, the script also downloads a user-mode rootkit from the command-and-control server (C2), the report added.

“The shell script also contains commands which download the miner, the config file and the user mode rootkit from the attacker’s web server,” the report explained. “The attackers used [the] wget utility to fetch the malicious components and chmod utility to make the components executable.”

The report said the rootkit gets saved as “” and the script modifies vSphere to run the XMRig cryptominer.

Source: Uptycs.


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