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Google bans mining apps

by bojan

Google has brought a decision to update the developer policies at Play Store to ban crypto mining apps, as well as apps with troublesome adds. At the moment, the apps that deal with remote crypto mining are still allowed because they are cloud-based and not endangering the device. However, Play Store will no longer allow the installation of mobile applications that miners use directly as crypto tools on devices. They are repetitively providing the same experience as on real mining platforms. These apps can be easily deleted if they literally completely copy the content of another app, or if a developer makes copies of one app with the same or similar content. In addition, the apps that deal with firearms, explosives, ammunition and similar stuff also deal with some restrictions and bans due to a simulation of arms in use (YouTube introduced similar restrictive measures at the beginning of the year). Apps that provide the users with instructions on manufacturing the mentioned firearms and its accessories have also been deleted. Other apps that experienced the same destiny are those with adult content that may seem attractive to the underage population, and manipulative adds that abuse the submitted personal information.

Google’s developer policy updated

After months of growing hostility, Google has updated the developer policy in July, and it reads that all the existing applications contrary to this new rule shall be removed in due time. As we said, this rule applies to apps that allow mining on devices because the clandestine mining has become an increasing trend on Play Store. Apple store, as its direct competition, updated their policies as well in order to protect their users from fraudulent actions. However, Apple still allows those applications that are approved by the official exchanges, registered for ICOs, and lists cloud mining iOS mining apps. The policy creators have still not determined a deadline for these apps to be completely banned, but Google has been deleting mining extensions since April. These restrictive measures are claimed to be necessary to protect the users from the intrusive third parties, but how effective these interventions will be, we still don’t know.

How does the infection work?

The infected device gradually slows down the system process by disabling the loading of applications or uploading them very, very slowly. The mining of digital currencies usurps the device occupying its entire resources. There have been noticed many mining malware cases of abuse, and the latest serious actions have been detected on Fire TV Stick Devices and Amazon Fire TV which are Android based. Illegal crypto operators use sophisticated and cunning malware techniques for corruption, generating millions on their accounts without any disturbances. Apple’s mining ban has supposedly protected itself from further damages enabling a total protection of battery, hardware, preventing excessive heat and restricting ICOs.

Google’s removal of the Metamask’s chrome extensions

One of the latest news in the crypto industry that has drawn the attention of the public was the removal of the real Ethereum wallet from the web store and leaving the fake intact a few days ago. Due to this action, Google was severely criticized on Twitter and Reddit. The developer of the Brave browser explained that the extension used the email address that was malicious, meant for phishing, but instead of banning the clone, Google staff accidentally banned the original extension. In addition, Metamask is the kind of application that enables a direct interaction with the Ethereum platform, and Brave and Opera developers have built-in Ethereum wallets to their browsers.

The rise of crypto mining malware

The problem with cryptocurrency mobile and desktop mining malware has appeared recently, but it’s getting more frequent. Coinhive is considered as one of the top offenders. It’s accused of using a small portion of JavaScript that it again uses to install in advertisements and on websites. By doing that, it hijacks the power of the device to visit the sites. In addition, it can be said that crypto mining fraudulent activities directly affect the increase in the value of cryptocurrencies cause they are more passive and secretive ways of ransomware. Crypto criminals may not gain huge profits at once, but this type of malware enables abuse for a longer period of time and less effort.

Will the ban decrease the value?

The question is: how many people actually use their mobile device for crypto mining? Well, not many, because it turned out that smartphones are not really reliable mining devices. The very process of mining implies complex calculations beyond the capacity of smartphones. It’s almost certain that the yield of these apps is much lower than that of the full-fledged traditional mining. This means that this kind of mining cannot bring some considerable profit to anyone, even to those having flagship smartphones. The industry is still dominated by incomparably powerful ASIC chips. Another android mining disadvantage is that smartphone mining malware literally can burn the batteries of the device meaning that this process can be damaging even for the abuser.

Is this a fight against cryptocurrencies?

At every initial stage of a new technology and a new moneymaking opportunity, scams are an expected phenomenon. So, its no wonder that platforms like Google and Apple have taken the steps towards the protection of their business and their users, but these steps do not mean blockade of digital money nor its total ban. They just want the services they allow to be reliable and licensed. So, next time you get tempted to click on the add, banner, or app that’s promising big money with Forex trading, crypto money or some other financial platform, makes sure that the app is regulated and certified by the platform in question. Serious investors are not afraid of scams, but they are extremely cautious where and how they invest their money. The monitored and regulated market brings big revenues to investors and its no wonder that they see their future in the crypto industry.

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