Google will no longer accept Chrome extensions that mine cryptocurrency

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Starting today, Google’s Chrome Web Store will no longer accept extensions that mine cryptocurrency. The company says there had been a rise in “malicious extensions” over the past few months which appear to be useful, but are actually embedding hidden cryptocurrency mining scripts that run in the background without consent, consuming valuable computing resources. Google says existing extensions will be delisted from the Chrome Web Store in late June, though extensions with blockchain-related purposes “other than mining” will still be permitted.

Google had previously allowed cryptocurrency mining in extensions as long as it was the extension’s single purpose and the user was informed about the process. However, Google said that around 90…

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Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Would you let an app mine cryptocurrency on your Mac in exchange for premium features? [Poll]

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Over the last week, we’ve reported on Calendar 2, an app from Qbix that seemingly added cryptocurrency mining as an alternative to paying for premium features. Qbix itself acknowledged issues with the model and Apple said such practices are not allowed in the Mac App Store, but that almost certainly won’t stop developers outside of the Mac App Store from doing it.

Would you be willing to let an app mine cryptocurrency in the background in exchange for premium features?

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Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Apparently Home Heaters Now Mine Crypto

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Computers get hot, sometimes to the point that they even overheat and shut down. Now, French startup Qarnot is taking advantage of what for most of us remains an inconvenient side effect. They’re selling a cryptocurrency heater that mines crypto while also warming your home.

Officially called the QC-1 crypto heater, the device looks like a black radiator adorned with a grille and wooden top. Housed inside the cryptocurrency heater are two AMD graphics processing units (GPUs) (Sapphire NITRO+ Radeon RX 580 with 8GB of RAM). The GC-1 mines ether by default, but the user can direct the device to mine another cryptocurrency, such as litecoin or bitcoin.

Crypto heater
Image Credit: Qarnot

According to Qarnot, the QC-1 takes 10 minutes to set up. It connects online via an Ethernet cable, and the owner can monitor the heater’s mining progress or activate a heating booster using a companion app.

Qarnot doesn’t take a cut of the crypto the QC-1 mines, according to a Tech Crunch report, meaning you can profit and stay warm without worry. Using the current price of ether as a base, Qarnot estimates their cryptocurrency heater can mine an average of $ 120 worth of ether per month.

The rig will set you back €2,900 ($ 3,571), and if you preorder one before March 20, it will arrive around June 20.

The QC-1 isn’t the first device of its kind. Russian startup Comino sells two similar mining rigs that double as space heaters: the Comino N1 and the Comino N4. The N1 mines ether while the N4, which is currently sold out, mines Zcash. Both sell for €4,999 ($ 6,157).

In any case, that is a lot of money to spend on a mining rig, regardless of the company behind it. However, if you’re all in on crypto mining and want to cut down on your heating bill, these look like the most specific way for you to address two problems simultaneously.

Disclosure: Several members of the Futurism team, including the editors of this piece, are personal investors in a number of cryptocurrency markets. Their personal investment perspectives have no impact on editorial content.

The post Apparently Home Heaters Now Mine Crypto appeared first on Futurism.

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Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

#MWC18: It takes 16,000 phones to mine for £1k of cryptocurrency

Specialist firm Avast launches IoT security platform – and mines for Monero using a smart TV.

Cybersecurity firm Avast is using its presence at Mobile World Congress (#MWC18) in Barcelona to expose the security vulnerabilities of the Internet of Things (IoT). It is doing this by mining Monero, the popular cryptocurrency, using a smart TV.

Avast is also using #MWC18 to highlight the growing threat of cyber crooks hacking into people’s mobile and other devices to mine cryptocurrencies. 

Research from the firm suggests that 15,800 devices would be needed to mine just $ 1,000. As a result, cyber criminals are mounting mass attacks to pass the costs of mining onto strangers. 

Gagan Singh, senior VP and general manager of mobile at Avast, said hackers are increasingly turning their attention to cyptocurrencies. “Until recently, cybercriminals were focused on spreading malware to turn PCs into crypto-mining machines, but now we are seeing an uptick in attacks targeting IoT devices and smartphones,” he said.

“The costs involved in mining are so high that profit from cryptocurrency mining is very low, encouraging cybercriminals to attack not tens of thousands, but millions of devices.

“According to current data from Shodan.io, a search engine for internet-connected things, 58,031 smart devices in Barcelona [at #MWC18] are vulnerable. If each of these devices were recruited to a botnet to mine Monero at Mobile World Congress, cybercriminals could earn the equivalent of $ 3,600,” he added.

Read more: Flip and run: Contactless payment wallet for cryptocurrencies launched

Read more: Crypto mining: Why IoT users should worry about NVIDIA’s stock price

Smart Life platform

Avast also unveiled a new Internet of Things security service called Smart Life. It uses artificial intelligence to track and block cyber attacks.

Avast plans to offer Smart Life as a software as a service (SaaS) platform to both technology providers and customers. The new offering is targeted at small and medium-sized businesses, as well as at consumers.

With the platform, users have a quick and easy way to secure their connected devices and networks, said the company. They can do this while at home, in the office, or on the move.

Read more: IoT ramps up cyber security risk, says in-depth report

Internet of Business says

Combined with blockchain, cryptocurrencies could have an exciting role to play in the IoT, by embedding seamless payment systems into real-world environments, such as smart cities, spaces, and buildings.

However, Avast’s research is useful, as it provides yet more evidence that cryptocurrencies aren’t magic beans that grow into money trees in a virtual kingdom; they are deeply connected to the real world, the laws of physics, electricity, hardware, and all the labour and environmental costs that it takes to produce them. For any meaningful value to be attached to cryptocurrencies, the cost per watt of mining needs to be established.

As has been widely reported, it took more energy to mine for BitCoin in one year than was used by the entire Republic of Ireland in the same period.

The post #MWC18: It takes 16,000 phones to mine for £1k of cryptocurrency appeared first on Internet of Business.

Internet of Business

Salon is using adblocking readers’ CPU power to mine cryptocurrency


It seems popular online magazine Salon is the latest company to hop onto the cryptocurrency mining bandwagon. The publication has updated its website to require users to disable their ad-blockers for the right to read articles – or alternatively, lend their CPU power to mine cryptocurrency. Visitors are now prompted to either turn off ad-blockers altogether or select the new ‘Suppress Ads’ option to “block ads by allowing Salon to use your unused computing power.” According to a clarification on its website, opting to lend your “unused processing power” will only happen “when you are browsing Salon.com.” The other options are to…

This story continues at The Next Web
The Next Web

WordPress plugin hacked to mine cryptocurrency: government, ICO, NHS sites hit

US think-tank calls for IoT device design to be regulated

US and UK government websites have been hit by malware mining Monero.

Government websites in the US and UK, including that of the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), have been hit by malware designed to mine cryptocurrency.

According to security researcher Scott Helme, the security breach resulted in over 4,000 sites serving up the malicious code.

Others affected include the UK Student Loans Company (SLC), National Health Service (NHS) Scotland, and the Queensland government portal in Australia.

The compromised plugin is called Browsealoud, which helps visually impaired people to access text on websites. The malware uses a site visitor’s own processor to mine for the Monero cryptocurrency.

Helme was made aware of the hack by fellow security specialist Ian Thornton-Trump, who discovered that the ICO’s website was hosting the malware.

Four-hour window of opportunity

Texthelp, the company that makes the plugin, reported that its product was infected for four hours, according to a blog post by security firm Wordfence. Browsealoud was taken offline as soon as the problem was spotted.

In his own blog post, Helme said that the script for the Browsealoud plugin, ba.js, was altered to include the Coinhive cryptocurrency miner, which targets Monero.

“If you want to load a cryptominer on 1,000+ websites, you don’t attack 1,000+ websites, you attack the one website that they all load content from,” he said.

“In this case, it turned out that Texthelp, an assistive technology provider, had been compromised and one of their hosted script files changed.”

Security testing

In a statement, Texthelp data security officer Martin McKay said, “Texthelp has in place continuous automated security tests for Browsealoud, and these detected the modified file and as a result the product was taken offline.

“This removed Browsealoud from all our customer sites immediately, addressing the security risk without our customers having to take any action. Texthelp can report that no customer data has been accessed or lost.”

He added that a security review would be conducted by a specialist independent consultancy. That investigation is still ongoing, and customers will receive an update when it has been completed.

Internet of Business says

As this ‘supply chain hack’ reveals, the downside of an interconnected world is that security problems can spread worldwide in seconds. This will be a major issue in the years ahead for the IoT, unless smart device manufacturers put enterprise-grade security programmes in place to match the reactive security programmes that have been developed over a quarter century of online business.

The post WordPress plugin hacked to mine cryptocurrency: government, ICO, NHS sites hit appeared first on Internet of Business.

Internet of Business

UNICEF recruits gamers to mine cryptocurrency for Syrian kids

UNICEF has launched a new fund-raising project in the same vein as SETI@Home and Einstein@home, but with a cryptocurrency spin. In an effort to raise money for the children in war-torn Syria, the organization is asking gamers, eSports fans and anybod…
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China Has Built a Huge Floating Solar Farm on Top of a Deserted Coal Mine

Floating Solar

The world’s largest floating solar farm, sitting on a lake that used to be a coal mine, is China’s latest effort to showcase its commitment to renewable energy. With a 166,000 panels and a total capacity of 40 megawatts, the solar farm can produce enough energy to power 15,000 homes, the South China Morning Post reports.

While it still consumes a lot of oil, coal and natural gas, China is experiencing an unprecedented solar boom. As of November  2017, solar PV accounted for 126 gigawatts, a spike of 67 percent compared to the same time in 2016. Crucially, the country is also trying to move away from highly polluting sources of energy, which are estimated to have contributed to 366,000 deaths in 2013 alone.

The largest floating solar farm in the world. Image Credit: Sungrow
The largest floating solar farm in the world. Image Credit: Sungrow

In its yearly overview of the world’s energy markets, the International Energy Agency (IEA) finds that China is entering a new phase of its economic development, moving away from heavy manufacturing and other carbon intensive industries. Ambitious investments in clean energy projects such as the floating solar farm, located in the coal-rich Anhui province, are part of the same overarching effort to clean up the Chinese economy.

Sitting on a Coal Mine

Building solar farms over water has the benefit of not interfering with terrestrial ecosystems, preserving wildlife and local vegetation. Additionally, placing panels on water keeps them cool and helps maintain efficiency because the cells don’t overheat.

This type of creative solutions is part of a growing trend. Worldwide, governments are investing to make obsolete sites useful once again. Another example can be found in Ukraine, where a solar farm is being built at the Chernobyl nuclear disaster site.

Investing in solar and renewable energy sources is a major step forward for the world’s biggest polluter, but China still has a long way to go before becoming the climate champion it wants to be. With a population of nearly 1.4 billion, dropping coal is a monumental task that is going to take many years. So, as clean energy continues to rise, China, as well as the rest of the world, will need an array of technologies — including carbon capture and storage — to offset their emissions.

The post China Has Built a Huge Floating Solar Farm on Top of a Deserted Coal Mine appeared first on Futurism.

Futurism

Opera update keeps sites from hijacking your browser to mine bitcoin

Did you know that your browser can be tricked into mining cryptocurrency like BitCoin without your knowledge? Apparently, there are scripts floating around out there on various servers and website plugins that can hijack your web browser and use its…
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