Mobile Opera Adds Protection from Cryptocurrency Mining

Published on 22 Jan. 2018
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The websites with embedded cryptocurrency miners are quite a concern for smartphones at the moment. That is the reason why web-browser Opera is trying to ensure the protection of its users. The company’s press release explains details.

Earlier, Opera has introduced the protection from the concealed cryptocurrency mining for its desktop browser, and now it adds the same function to the smartphone version. The information on this has been provided by the company (located in Oslo) today, January 22.

A new function will be available for Opera Mini and Opera for Android, according to the press release. It is a part of the embedded add-on for the ad blocking in the browser.

Press release states:

A new function, aimed at preventing cryptocurrency mining, can be activated by default if you turn on ad blocking in Opera Mini (iOS and Android) or Opera for Android. You can turn on an ad blocker in “Settings,” and it will automatically detect and stop mining scenarios, recorded in web-pages.

The estimated total of devices suffering from the work slowdown because of websites with embedded cryptocurrency miners, is around a billion, says Opera. Users do not realize that their browsers are secretly engaged in the cryptocurrency mining. Analyzing the browser history, Opera states that there are more than 3 millions of websites with embedded miners.

According to the company, users can hardly understand the problem since there is no hint or any visual signal that a miner is using one’s browser.

Cryptocurrency miners can overload the smartphones’ processors making them work for 100% and potentially leading to the overheating.

Such damage can be permanent. According to the article in ZDNet, one trojan created so much heat on the phone that its battery bulged and caused a serious damage to the device. Although one of the reasons for the extensive generation of heat was a huge amount of advertising, the main cause was that the central processor was fully loaded by the Monero miner. A Trojan appeared to be so effective that it “wrecked the phone within 48 hours,” says the article.

Concealed mining of Monero was detected on the multiple users’ devices after visiting the following infected websites: torrent-tracker The Pirate Bay, paid website of the stream video Fight Pass owned by Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), and even the computer systems of the world biggest oil operator “Transneft” has suffered from the influence of the concealed script for Monero mining Coinhive.

A new function of the Opera is already available, and the browser itself can be downloaded at Google Play store, says the press release.

Recently, we’ve also informed that Facebook Messenger, one of the modern most popular services for instant messaging, is spreading a malware for Monero mining.


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