Bitcoin miners breached Land Information NZ cloud service

Credit: Toitū Te Whenua Land Information New Zealand

A Land Information NZ cloud service was breached and became home to a rogue bitcoin mining operation, the operator of New Zealand’s property register has told Parliament.

LINZ IT staff detected an increase in the usage of an underlying public cloud service in the year ended 30 June 2021, the agency told the primary production committee as part of its annual review.

“Within 24 hours of the beginning of the breach, an investigation found a compromise in a third party application configuration which had allowed an external party access,” LINZ reported.

“No data breach occurred as the unauthorised access was running a process doing bitcoin mining to use the infrastructure capacity (processor and memory) and not to access any data that was on the server.” 

The ‘Cryptojacking’ operation was shut down within 24 hours of being detected, and the system configuration was changed to block access.