In a new update to its developer policies, Google has specified that apps, mining cryptocurrencies will be prohibited. Although the Mountain View, California-based tech company, made an exception with regard to apps, which are used in the remote management of cryptocurrency mining as these will be allowed:
“We don’t allow apps that mine cryptocurrency on devices. We permit apps that remotely manage the mining of cryptocurrency.”
The ban comes after a rising number of cryptojacking cases from devices. For example, in April this year, global cybersecurity company Kaspersky claimed that cryptocurrency mining apps, containing the Coinhive miner, were being offered on Google Play Store, disguised as harmless entertainment apps.
Another example of mining coins is PlacarTV, an app, which is used to stream soccer games while mining Monero in the background, thereby draining the device’s battery or slowing down devices. However, since the app functioned as advertised, it was easy for users to blame the short battery life on factors such as the age of the device.
Prior to outlawing cryptocurrency mining apps on Google Play Store, the online search behemoth had announced a ban on cryptocurrency mining extensions on its Chrome Store.
Google Chrome Extensions Platform Product Manager, James Wagner, wrote in his statement at the time:
“Until now, Chrome Web Store policy has permitted cryptocurrency mining in extensions as long as it is the extension’s single purpose, and the user is adequately informed about the mining behavior. Unfortunately, approximately 90% of all extensions with mining scripts that developers have attempted to upload to Chrome Web Store have failed to comply with these policies, and have been either rejected or removed from the store.”
Google is not alone in putting restrictions on cryptocurrency mining apps. Last month, tech giant Apple prohibited apps that mined cryptocurrencies on the device, and app developers from featuring third-party ads that mined cryptocurrencies as well.