'Earlier this month, Israeli adtech firm Spotad warned websites and publishers about cryptocurrency miners slipping into ads. The crypto-focused website, CoinDesk, reported on Spotad’s findings after speaking to the agency’s co-founder Yoav Oz, who said, “The mining protocol for the big cryptocurrencies, like bitcoin and bitcoin cash… to mine that kind of crypto requires high end servers and even GPU-based processing. Monero has a script that can perform well on CPUs that actually reside in any desktop, laptop, and mobile device.”
Mr. Oz didn’t disclose which network or which website has been affected by this, but stressed that malware targets the cryptocurrency Monero, simply because it is easier to mine. He then went on to warn online publications, claiming they should stay vigilant and focus on fraud detection.
While most internet users have probably encountered crypto miners, especially on torrent and video streaming websites, ad blockers and anti-virus software have been able to combat them efficiently. In September 2017, Motherboard‘s Jordan Pearson published an article about an efficient crypto ad blocker, after Piratebay had gotten its users to mine Monero without their knowledge.
This, however, seems to have been just the beginning. YouTube was recently caught displaying ads with CPU-draining cryptocurrency miners, Ars Technica reported. Word of these problematic YouTube ads reportedly started on Tuesday, as people started complaining on social media websites. Their antivirus software detected the crypto miner Coinhive, they claim.
“YouTube was likely targeted because users are typically on the site for an extended period of time. This is a prime target for cryptojacking malware, because the longer the users are mining for cryptocurrency the more money is made,” security researcher Troy Mursch told Ars Technica.'
Read more: YouTube caught serving ads with crypto miners – Its draining your CPU and basically creates money for someone else
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