[Note: This item comes from friend Steve Goldstein. DLH]
Now even YouTube serves ads with CPU-draining cryptocurrency miners
Ad campaign lets attackers profit while unwitting users watch videos.
By Dan Goodin
Jan 26 2018
YouTube was recently caught displaying ads that covertly leach off visitors’ CPUs and electricity to generate digital currency on behalf of anonymous attackers, it was widely reported.
Word of the abusive ads started no later than Tuesday, as people took to social media sites to complain their antivirus programs were detecting cryptocurrency mining code when they visited YouTube. The warnings came even when people changed the browser they were using, and the warnings seemed to be limited to times when users were on YouTube.
Great now my browser everytime I watch youtube… my anti virus always blocking coinhive because malware . Idk much about it but this is getting annoying and I need a solution please T n T
— Arung (@ArungLaksmana) January 23, 2018
Hey @avast_antivirus seems that you are blocking crypto miners (#coinhive) in @YouTube #ads
Thank you 🙂https://t.co/p2JjwnQyxz
— Diego Betto (@diegobetto) January 25, 2018
— ᛗ🦊ᛟErvoᛟ🦊ᛗ (@Mystic_Ervo) January 24, 2018
On Friday, researchers with antivirus provider Trend Micro said the ads helped drive a more than three-fold spike in Web miner detections. They said the attackers behind the ads were abusing Google’s DoubleClick ad platform to display them to YouTube visitors in select countries, including Japan, France, Taiwan, Italy, and Spain.
“YouTube was likely targeted because users are typically on the site for an extended period of time,” independent security researcher Troy Mursch told Ars. “This is a prime target for cryptojacking malware, because the longer the users are mining for cryptocurrency the more money is made.” Mursch said a campaign from Septemberthat used the Showtime website to deliver cryptocurrency-mining ads is another example of attackers targeting a video site.