Block websites from using your CPU to mine Cryptocurrency

Last weekend, The Pirate Bay, a popular torrenting site drew sharp criticism from users as it admitted to hiding details about testing a new service that intentionally used visitors’ CPU power to generate Cryptocurrency profits for itself. Coin Hive, the service used by Pirate Bay allowed it to mine the cryptocurrency called Monero without the consent of users while users had the website opened in a browser tab. This illicit nature highlights the problem of not only unregulated cryptocurrencies but cryptocurrency mining as well.

The scheme appeared to be an attempt by the website to generate revenue for itself. It is believed that miners worked like a botnet. Whenever a user visited the website, its web page sought the user’s permission for allowing it to use its CPU. It then used this power to run a complex hashing algorithm to find a unique string of letters and numbers used for mining Cryptocurrencies. Those who managed to complete the process successfully were rewarded handsomely for cracking the code.

Typically, currency with complex algorithms like Bitcoins, require more time and processing power for mining. However, mining currencies like ‘Monero’ need lesser power and effort. Once this news went public, the website, of course, offered an explanation as t why it was doing it. They said they were trying to generate revenue instead of using ads.

But now that this method has become known, it is quite possible that some other website may start using your computers CPU without your knowledge to mine cryptocurrencies. If you want to avoid such situations, and block websites from mining cryptocurrencies using your CPU via your browser, you can take the following precautionary measures.

Read: How to remove Coinhive crypto-mining script from your website.

Block websites from using your CPU to mine cryptocurrency

As a viable alternative to ad revenue, in future, some more websites may start using services that use visitors’ CPU power to generate cryptocurrency profits. It might be a good idea to take precautions! The way to do this is to use JavaScript-blocking extensions. Let us take a look at some of the browser extensions that are now available.

ScriptSafe for Chrome

Block websites from using your CPU to mine cryptocurrency

If you are a Chrome user and looking for an extension to stop certain websites from your computer resources for cryptocurrency mining, try ScriptSafe. The extension gives users control of the web and more secure browsing while emphasizing simplicity and intuitiveness. It blocks JavaScript from running by default. Its only shortfall is that it does not feature a Whitelist, meaning every site’s script is blocked, including google.com.

Install minerBlock extension for Chrome

It is a useful extension for Chrome browser to block web-based cryptocurrency miners all over the web. Apart from CoinHive it even block Minr. A good feature about the extension is that you can reverse the change i.e, if you do not mind lending your CPU for usage by the miner, you can remove their sites from the list of blocked domains.

NoCoin for Chrome

Alternatively, you can use No Coin’ extension. The extension simply blocks a list of blacklisted domains in *blacklist.txt*. Clicking on the icon shows you a button to pause/unpause its function. Use this simple solution to prevent exploitation of any known/unknown security vulnerabilities without any loss of functionality.

NoScript Security Suite for Firefox

This little extension is for Firefox users. It allows only active content to run only from sites you trust, and protect you against XSS and Clickjacking attacks. Try NoScript.

Anti-WebMiner stops Cryptojacking Mining Scripts

Anti-WebMiner for Windows will stop Cryptojacking Mining Scripts. It works on all browsers.

Stay alert, stay safe!

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The author Hemant Saxena is a post-graduate in bio-technology and has an immense interest in following Windows, Office and other technology developments. Quiet by nature, he is an avid Lacrosse player. Creating a System Restore Point first before installing a new software, and being careful about any third-party offers while installing freeware is recommended.