Website monetization is an essential aspect of the Internet economy. While there are various revenue sources for content providers, advertising is the most common method for monetizing website traffic. Websites have been collecting user data for personalized advertisements and tracking users’ online behavior for retargeting to maximize their revenues. However, these practices are raising concerns regarding the privacy of users. In response, users are becoming more proactive in protecting their online privacy by using anonymous browsers, search engines, and ad blockers. While providing privacy for users, these practices reduce ad revenue for content providers. Recently, with the increasing value of cryptocurrencies and the development of new cryptocurrencies designed for consumer-grade hardware, browser-based cryptocurrency mining (BCM) has started to emerge as a privacy-focused method for monetizing web traffic. In this study, we use topic modeling to analyze the perceptions of potential users to identify security-related concerns regarding BCM adoption. Our preliminary results show that BCM is closely associated with security concepts, such as “attacks” and “malware.” The BCM process is also related to concepts like “system resources,” “hidden,” and “compromised.” The preliminary results suggest that for the successful adoption of BCM, websites need to be more transparent about the BCM process and its use of system resources.
Dincelli, Ersin and Yayla, Alper, "A LANDMINE OR A GOLDMINE? IDENTIFYING SECURITY CONCERNS OF BROWSER- BASED CRYPTOCURRENCY MINING" (2020). ECIS 2020 Research-in-Progress Papers. 45.
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