Chrome Extension SafeBrowse Embeds Cryptocurrency Miner in Browser

SafeBrowse is a Chrome extension that claims to accelerate web browsing times by eliminating advertising overlays that make users wait for a set period of time before viewing the intended content. However, researchers discovered an embedded JavaScript library within the extension’s code designed to mine Monero cryptocurrency without the user’s knowledge or consent. This process drastically increases the computer’s CPU usage, reducing or eliminating processing power needed for other system tasks. At the time of writing, SafeBrowse has nearly 141,000 users. The NJCCIC recommends carefully researching browser extensions prior to installation and monitoring your system’s CPU usage for spikes in activity after installation. Promptly remove any extension that behaves erratically or inexplicably hogs system resources. Bleeping Computer provides more information about this threat and instructions on how to check your system’s CPU usage here.