Anyone who has a device connected to the internet and who browses webpages, checks email or downloads apps is at risk for cryptojacking.
While that sounds alarming, there are two common ways people usually fall victim to cryptojacking. One occurs by clicking on a malicious email link, which immediately loads crypto-mining software onto your device and, unbeknownst to you, turns it into a crypto-mining machine.
These schemes happen frequently on pages or apps that draw a lot of traffic. For example, in 2018 a cryptojacking code was found hidden on the Los Angeles Times Homicide Report page.
A year later, eight cryptojacking apps were found in the Microsoft Store and even promoted on lists of the top free apps. When users downloaded and launched one of the apps, they would unknowingly download cryptojacking software onto their device.
One problem cryptojacking causes also happens to be one way to detect when cryptojacking is happening: It causes your device to not function properly. A computer that’s being used to mine cryptocurrency may experience problems like: