- Apr 24, 2016
Et Tu, Avira? Ashwin reported last week that Norton was adding a new component, called Norton Crypto, to its security products. Norton Crypto is a crypto currency miner that will run when the system is detected as idle. It appears that Avira is doing the same.
Avira Crypto is a crypto mining component that is integrated into (some?) Avira products.
Originally announced in October 2021, Avira Crypto was launched to help consumers "mine cryptocurrency more safely and easily, directly through the Avira platform".
Avira goes on to explain the ease of use of the integrated Crypto component in a blog post on the official Avira blog in October 2021.
"With Avira Crypto, coinminers can now turn idle time on their PCs into an opportunity to earn digital currency. It is designed to be simple to use, secure and reliable, enabling customers to mine for cryptocurrency with just a few clicks and avoid the general barriers that might otherwise prevent their entry into the cryptocurrency ecosystem."
The company created a FAQ on its support site that provides a few additional details on the integration. According to the FAQ, Avira Crypto is mining Ethereum on systems and comes with a personal wallet.
Avira does not reveal how much, if any, of the mined currency it is taking for itself. Norton revealed last week that it is taking 15% of the earned currency from Norton Crypto users.
Participation in Avira Crypto and Norton Crypto is voluntary. Security expert Brian Krebs notes that the voluntary nature "ultimately hinges on how these crypto programs are pitched and whether users really understand what they’re doing when they enable them".
Whether mining is profitable depends on a number of factors, including the cost of electricity but also wear and tear of the hardware.
Both companies have been critized for the integration of crypto mining components. Previously, security products blocked malicious attempts to run crypto miners on customer PCs. The integration may add a bit of revenue for the companies, but it may also impact the reputation of both companies.
I installed the latest version of Avira Free on a system and it did not include Avira Crypto. Maybe it is being rolled out currently or it is limited to customers from specific regions at the time of writing.
Now You: what is your take on this? Think Avast is next?