It isn't tough for websites to fend off these hidden mining operations, and you're able to thwart them yourself by running script blockers like NoScript or, well, closing the browser tab. However, the Politifact incident suggests that these miners are getting to be more of a prevalent problem.
Hackers have understood that they don't necessarily need to compromise your PC or run a millionaire scam to produce a clear profit — they just need to slide their code into a site and watch the electronic currency roll in. That is better for personal security, but it could also make web browsing a hassle as opportunists bog down your system for the sake of a little money.
What Are The Bitcoin Miners That Infected Politifact?
The Bitcoin digital currency program benefits miners (in bitcoins) because of their number-crunching function, which is essential to keeping the anonymous Bitcoin money system functioning. With the Trojan, hackers are forcing others' machines to make them cash, and it can really put a strain on those machines. Victims might observe that their CPU usage shoots sky high.
Once computer criminals have duped you into downloading a Trojan, they've got control of your computer, and there are a lot of things that they could do. Along with the Trojan isn't just used for Bitcoin mining.
This isn't the first time a Bitcoin mining Trojan has popped up, and malicious applications that flat-out steals Bitcoins has been around for years. Two decades ago, Symantec saw a Trojan — known as Badminer — that sniffed out graphic processing units and used them to crank out bitcoins.
A regular PC wouldn't be able to do much Bitcoin mining by itself, but hackers could fairly easily register a group of computers that are endangered using a particular Bitcoin mining pool and point each of the systems there.