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YouTube ads are the latest ground zero for nefarious crypto mining

YouTube ads are the latest ground zero for nefarious crypto mining
From Mashable - January 27, 2018

YouTube is turning passive viewers into cryptocurrency miners, and Google is not happy.

The issue became apparent earlier in the week as complaints surfaced on social media claiming that YouTube ads were raising red flags in anti-virus software. A service called Coinhive was hijacking a viewer's CPU and using its power to mine crypto.

A Friday blog post from Trend Micro, an international cybersecurity company, confirmed the sharp uptick in Coinhive use earlier in the week, pinning it to a "malvertising campaign" that subverted a Google ad service used on YouTube.

"Attackers abused Googles DoubleClick, which develops and provides internet ad serving services, for traffic distribution," the post notes. Trend Micro's data pointed to Japan, France, Taiwan, Italy, and Spain as the countries affected by the campaign.

In a statement given to Ars Technica on Friday, Google confirmed the cryptojacking threat, noting that "[i]n this case, the ads were blocked in less than two hours and the malicious actors were quickly removed from our platforms."

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