The WhatsApp of Wall Street, a cyber-attack explicitly targeting the stock market

2018-02-05T16:13:05+00:0031/01/2018|Tags: , |

Many of the attacks reported in our news were mainly meant to steal some type of asset and only incidentally they ended damaging intangible or economical assets: these were somehow cascading and unwanted effects of the attack, probably not planned by the attacker.

Instead, here is a past attack explicitly meant to hit the trade stocks, by influencing the quotation of a specific company, and preparing the ground for a “pump and dump” attack.

On August 21 2015, a pump and dump penny stock scam targeting US users, and spread using WhatsApp, drove the share price of Avra Inc, a digital currency company, by 640% from its opening price of $0.17 to its peak of $1.26. What is unique about this scam is its use of WhatsApp to spread the threat, essentially using mobile applications to resurrect schemes that are dying out on email.

The attack has begun with messages sent in the early hours of the 21st of August, 2015 to US WhatsApp users. Altogether, in this one day $1.713 million dollars changed hand, with a spike alone on the 11:03 responsible for around $93k. In can be considered that this is probably a good initial ball-park figure for the amount received by the fraudsters.

Read the full story on the WhatsApp of Wall Street on HelpNetSecurity.