Norton Crypto is a new feature added to Norton 360 that allows users to mine Ether cryptocurrency. The feature is available for users who have enrolled in Norton 360's early adopter programme. NortonLifeLock, the company behind the popular antivirus software, states Norton Crypto will let consumers “safely and easily mine cryptocurrency” as crypto economy becomes more widespread. Mining cryptocurrency comes with its risks as it requires third party applications to be installed that run the risk of malware or the app running malicious code.
NortonLifeLock shared through a press release that Norton Crypto will be available to those who are enrolled in Norton 360's early adopter programme. The feature comes with its own wallet system where users can track and transfer their earnings. NortonLifeLock says these stores earnings are saved in the cloud which keeps it safe from hard drive failures.
The idea behind adding a cryptocurrency mining tool within the antivirus programme was to keep customers safe from having to disable their security in order to run digital coin mining software. This could lead to unwanted code running on a user's system with an aim to take a piece of the earnings or planting ransomware.
In its report, Bleeping Computer points out that it is unclear if Norton Crypto runs independently for users or has a pool system that brings together resources of all Norton Crypto users. If it is the latter, Norton may charge a fee depending on the earnings.
“As the crypto economy continues to become a more important part of our customers' lives, we want to empower them to mine cryptocurrency with Norton, a brand they trust. Norton Crypto is yet another innovative example of how we are expanding our Cyber Safety platform to protect our customers' ever-evolving digital lives,” Vincent Pilette, CEO, NortonLifeLock said in the press release.
Norton Crypto lets customers mine Ether but the release does not mention any other mining cryptocurrency. It can let customers do so with “just a few clicks.” While Norton Crypto is only available to users enrolled in early adopter programme, it is expected to be available for all Norton 360 customers in the coming weeks. Users may require certain PC hardware to use Norton Crypto.
At the time of writing, Ether price in India stood at over Rs. 2.06 lakhs.