Yesterday, we wrote about Norton’s Crypto software, which allows users to mine Ethereum directly through Norton’s security software through an easy-to-use interface. We talked about the many issues that came up, not to mention the exorbitant 15% fee that Norton got rid of.Avira’s security software was banned because Norton would make huge sums of money Set to include similar applications. Avira is a newly acquired subsidiary of Norton.
Avira Crypto appears to work in much the same way as Norton Crypto. In all fairness, the feature is optional and disabled by default. Its ease of use and legitimacy are positive. The basic premise is that users use the processing power of their PCs to earn ether, although Avira says other tokens will be considered in the future. Given that crypto mining requires some technical knowledge, it can be considered an easy entry into the cryptocurrency ecosystem.
However, concerns remain. The cryptocurrency ecosystem still resembles the Wild West. There are ongoing security, economic, tax, political and environmental concerns. The traditional financial system has yet to catch up. This means that showing such mining software to users who do not fully understand cryptocurrencies is dangerous, if not downright shady. Never underestimate the lure of what some might misinterpret as “free money”.
It’s entirely possible that users won’t make any profit at all once pool fees, electricity, and ethereum fees are factored in. Just today, A single ETH transaction is over $33 It can be much higher than that, so unless you are mining long term or have powerful hardware, users may end up running at a loss. Norton and Avira won’t, though, due to the 15% pool fee. We’d love to see Norton’s private wallet and see all the eth pouring in.
Avira offers a free product, which means hundreds of millions of users may have access to the software. Interestingly, Norton is merging with its former competitor Avast, so if at some point in the future, Avast products may include a crypto mining component.
What’s next? Kaspersky? Trend Micro? average? How did Facebook, Google or Microsoft build it into Windows? Regulators may have to step up to prevent usage falling prey to unscrupulous software providers. Don’t be fooled by PR rhetoric about ease of use or safety and protection from bad actors. Both Norton and Avira make their money here. The truck loads it. Other companies will surely follow.