NortonLifeLock launches a variant of its antivirus dedicated to cryptocurrency mining for users of the Norton 360 antivirus platform.
Announced Wednesday, NortonLifeLock says its new feature, Norton Crypto, will be rolled out to users of its Norton early adopter program.
Norton Crypto was designed to allow users to “easily and securely mine cryptocurrencies”. First, users will be able to mine Ethereum (ETH).
Norton 360 ™ Security all in one
- Downloads: 5
- Release date : 04/01/2020
- Author : Symantec
- Licence : Demonstration
- Operating system : Windows – macOS
Mining software uses the capacities of a PC’s processor and graphics cards to obtain cryptocurrencies ranging from ETH to Monero (XMR) for example. However, in order to do this, NortonLifeLock says that users may have to disable their antivirus solutions – potentially Norton 360 included – and this could allow “untrusted code” to compromise their systems.
Agreement with Coinbase
The vendor adds that cryptocurrency miners who take this risk could have their hard-earned virtual coins stolen, or lose them if the coins are kept on users’ hard drives.
To promote this new feature, NortonLifeLock claims that Norton Crypto will protect against these traps by storing the coins in a cloud-based wallet, Norton Crypto Wallet.
A company spokesperson told The Verge that once cryptocurrencies are earned, it will be possible to “transfer money to Coinbase,” suggesting Norton Crypto users may need to also open an account on the exchange platform, unless other exchanges or means of transfer are offered.
A heckled crypto market
“We are proud to be the first mainstream cybersecurity company to offer coin miners the ability to safely and easily turn their PC’s idle time into an opportunity to earn digital currency,” commented Gagan Singh, Product Manager at NortonLifeLock.
The timing of the announcement falls however as the cryptocurrency market is far from booming. The prices of popular currencies, including bitcoin (BTC), ETH, and dogecoin (DOGE), appear to be slowly recovering after cryptocurrencies suffered a slump in May, triggered by a surge in regulatory activity in China and the United States, as well as Elon Musk’s announcement that Tesla will no longer accept BTC as a payment method.
Norton Crypto will be deployed and made available to all Norton 360 customers in the coming weeks.