Not even a month after the internet giant announced its product-wide ban against cryptocurrency advertisements, Google has just announced that they will be banning all cryptocurrency mining extensions from the Google Chrome web store.
The company is doing this in an attempt to protect users from cryptojacking. Apparently, the Chrome store had an abundance of supposed ‘crypto-based’ extensions and applications that were notorious for scamming users out of their money.
Hackers use the extensions and applications as a medium to cryptojack users—using their computers to mine cryptocurrencies. A good example of this is SafeBrowse. SafeBrowse was an extension marketed to “protect browsing” but the extension was later found by Google to have been secretly mine Monero in the background unbeknownst to its 140,000 users!
Google Chrome has allowed crypto mining extensions under two conditions: mining is the sole purpose of the extension, and the user is informed about the “mining behavior.” However, Google found that 90% of all crypto mining extensions have failed to comply with the policies.
Starting April 2, 2018, any new crypto mining extension will be rejected. Existing crypto mining extensions will be removed from the store in late June. Other blockchain-related extensions are still in the clear.
Photo by PhotoMIX Ltd.