Common threats like adware and spyware have a new tricky classmate called “cryptojacking”. Cryptojacking secretly uses your system or laptop or mobile device to mine cryptocurrency when you visit an infected site.
The idea for cryptojacking started in mid-September, when a company called Coinhive debuted a script that could start mining the cryptocurrency Monero when a webpage loaded. The Pirate Bay torrenting site quickly incorporated it to raise funds, and within weeks Coinhive copycats started cropping up. Hackers have even found ways to inject the scripts into websites mining money for themselves off of another site’s traffic.
Opera 50 Beta RC released with an in-built anti-Bitcoin mining feature called NoCoin – Cryptocurrency Mining Protection.
Like so many web tools, cryptojacking has plenty of promise as an innovation—and plenty of people happy to exploit it.