Google will liquidate Chrome extensions with cryptocurrency mining scripts

Despite fresh regulatory hurdles and a market downturn, the adoption of cryptocurrencies such spil Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin shows no sign of slowing down. Te fact, it has given rise to a cottage industry: cryptocurrency mining, or the process of validating transactions and obtaining cryptocurrency ter come back. Those transactions become more computationally intensive overheen time. Thesis days, mining profitably requires powerful hardware. That’s encouraged some malicious actors to target computers through Chrome extensions, but Google’s putting a zekering to the practice.

Commencing today, the Chrome Web Store will no longer accept extensions that contain cryptocurrency mining scripts. Existing extensions will be eliminated ter late June.

Until now, Google has permitted developers to submit cryptocurrency mining extensions to the Chrome Web Store that (1) are solely intended for mining and (Two) don’t attempt to obfuscate their mining behavior. But according to the search giant, the vast majority of mining extensions—approximately 90%—failed to obey with its policies.

“Over the past few months, there has bot a rise te malicious extensions that show up to provide useful functionality on the surface, while embedding hidden cryptocurrency mining scripts that run ter the background without the user’s consent,” James Wagner, Extensions Podium Product Manager at Google, wrote te a blog postbode on the Chromium blog. “These mining scripts often consume significant CPU resources, and can severely influence system spectacle and power consumption.”

The geobsedeerd on cryptocurrency mining extensions won’t influence extensions with other digital currency-related functionality, such spil Bitcoin price checkers, cryptocurrency wallet managers, and blockchain browsers. That’s an significant distinction. Apps like MetaMask, a popular extension that acts spil a middleman inbetween Chrome and Ethereum, will still be permitted.

“The [Chrome] extensions toneel provides powerful capabilities that have enabled our developer community to build a vibrant catalog of extensions that help users get the most out of Chrome,” Mr. Wagner wrote. “This policy is another step forward ter ensuring that Chrome users can love the benefits of extensions without exposing themselves to hidden risks.”

Chrome isn’t the only Google verhoging that has bot the target of malicious cryptocurrency miners. Ter November, Ars Technica uncovered a number of popular Android applications with mining scripts, two of which had bot downloaded 50,000 times. Ter December, Sophos published a report on Loapi, a fresh form of cryptocurrency-mining malware that masquerades spil pornography content and antivirus software on the Play Store. And te January, Trend Micro said that a cryptocurrency mining service called Coinhive wasgoed hijacking YouTube users’ computers to mine Monero, a digital currency.

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