Chrome extension caught stealing crypto-wallet private keys
Last Updated on by Segun Ayo
Users can install the Chrome extension and manage ETH coins and ERC20 tokens from within their browser, or they can install a Windows desktop app, if they want to manage their funds from outside a browser’s riskier environment.
Malicious behavior breakdown
According to Denley, the extension is dangerous to users in two ways. First, any funds (ETH coins and ERC0-based tokens) managed directly inside the extension are at risk.
Denley says that the extension sends the private keys of all wallets created or managed through its interface to a third-party website located at erc20wallet[.]tk.
According to an analysis of the malicious code, the process goes as follows:
- Users install the Chrome extension
- When users navigate to any of these 77 sites, the extension loads and injects an additional JS file from: https://erc20wallet[.]tk/js/content_.js
- This JS file contains obfuscated code [deobfuscated here]
- The code activates on five websites: MyEtherWallet.com, Idex.Market, Binance.org, NeoTracker.io, and Switcheo.exchange
- Once activated, the malicious JS code records the user’s login credentials, searches for private keys stored inside the dashboards of the five services, and, finally, sends the data to erc20wallet[.]tk
At the time of writing, the extension was still available for download through the official Google Chrome Web Store, where it listed 625 installs.
It is unclear if the Shitcoin Wallet team is responsible for the malicious code, or if the Chrome extension was compromised by a third-party. A spokesperson for the Shitcoin Wallet team did not reply to a request for comment before this article’s publication.
Scans with VirusTotal, a website that aggregates the virus scanning engines of several antivirus software makers, show both files as clean.
However, numerous comments posted on the wallet’s Telegram channel suggest the desktop apps might contain similarly malicious code, if not worse.