June 16, 2021

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Norton Antivirus Is Now a Cryptominer; Wait, what

You can't be serious. Norton 360, the somewhat-frustrating antivirus
software that comes preinstalled on many Windows computers, will soon have a
built-in Ethereum cryptominer. In its press release, NortonLifeLock says
that Norton Crypto will empower people to mine with a “brand they
trust” instead of taking risks and running “unvetted
code” on their computers. [...]

But let's be realistic for a second”the kind of people
who will use Norton Crypto probably wouldn't go out of their way
to download a spooky, “unvetted” cryptomining
software. They will only use Norton Crypto because it came preinstalled on
their computer and, at a glance, produces free money. Norton Crypto users
may not fully understand how the software works, the impact that
cryptomining has on their computer's lifespan, the tax
requirements for cryptomining, or the risks involved with crypto trading.

At its launch, Norton Crypto will only produce Ethereum, which is difficult
to mine on a single laptop or desktop. As noted by the BBC, it looks like
NortonLifeLock will get around the problem by combining miners'
computing power into a “pool” and divvying up
earnings. Problem is, it's common for crypto pools to have a 1%
fee. If Norton Crypto relies on such a system, then NortonLifeLock could
develop an extremely lucrative revenue stream at the expense of its
customers' computer hardware and naïvety.

https://www.reviewgeek.com/86346/norton-antivirus-is-now-a-cryptominer-wait-what/

News that sounds like a joke. I ran Norton SystemWorks, then Norton 360.
Gave it up because ... I forget why; maybe too heavy a footprint, too
expensive, maybe Windows Defender and such became good enough. I've never
missed it or Norton itself.