This is Kind of Tempting

The websites of US telly giant CBS’s Showtime contained JavaScript that secretly commandeered viewers’ web browsers over the weekend to mine cryptocurrency.

The flagship and its instant-access sibling silently pulled in code that caused browsers to blow spare processor time calculating new Monero coins – a privacy-focused alternative to the ever-popular Bitcoin. The hidden software typically consumed as much as 60 per cent of CPU capacity on computers visiting the sites.

The scripts were written by Code [Coin] Hive, a legit outfit that provides JavaScript to website owners: webmasters add the code to their pages so that they can earn slivers of cash from each visitor as an alternative to serving adverts to generate revenue. Over time, money mined by the Code-Hive-hosted scripts adds up and is transferred from Coin Hive to the site’s administrators. One Monero coin, 1 XMR, is worth about $92 right now.

Let me start by saying that I won’t be putting code like this on my site.

I am considering placing an additional button on my tip jar (aka Matthew’s Saroff’s Beer Fund), but it would take the form of another donation button, since the revenue from Google™ Adsense™ is so pathetic.

If I do this, it will be voluntary, another button to click on the page, and I might occasionally nag my reader(s) to click the button.

As always, note that this post should in no way be construed as an inducement or a request for my reader(s) to click on any ad that they would not otherwise be inclined to investigate further. This would be a violation of the terms of service for Google™ Adsense™.

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