Browser-Based Cryptocurrency Miner
The world’s popular torrent download website, The Pirate Bay, has again been in a new controversy—this time over secretly planting an in-browser cryptocurrency miner on its website that utilizes its visitors’ CPU processing power in order to mine digital currencies.
The Pirate Bay is the most popular and most visited file-sharing website predominantly used to share copyrighted material free of charge. The site has usually been in the news for copyright infringement by movie studios, music producers and software creators.
The Pirate Bay has recently been caught generating revenue by secretly utilizing CPU power of its millions of visitors to mine a Bitcoin alternative called Monero without their knowledge.
The modern Internet depends on advertising revenue to survive, which
apparently sometimes spoils users’ experience. But The Pirate Bay is trying to choose a different approach.
However, shortly after the issue was first reported by TorrentFreak, The Pirate Bay issued a statement on its website, saying that it tested the miner for just 24 hours to see if the miner could be used as an alternative to generate revenue, allowing it to get rid of annoying ads on the torrent website altogether.
“This is only a test. We really want to get rid of all the ads. But we also need enough money to keep the site running,” says The Pirate Bay.
“Let us know what you think in the comments. Do you want ads or do you want to give away a few of your CPU cycles every time you visit the site?”
The Pirate Bay also clarified that the miner software should consume only 20 to 30 percent of CPU power and should be restricted to run in only one single tab.
No other further details were revealed by The Pirate Bay, but threads on Reddit suggested that the Pirate Bay users were not happy about the miner, with several users complaining that the website enabled the miner “without explicit knowledge or authorization of users.”
Many users had called this idea “dumb,” but borrowing website visitors’ extra CPU resources to allow sites generate revenue could place an end to the shady advertisements.
But yes, users should be warned of any such miner by the respective website.