If you combine Cryptocurrency mining with Free Wifi in spaces that are found everywhere, you are bound to end up with Starbucks at a certain point. And so it was that a customer pointed out that when he entered the Buenos Aires Starbucks earlier this week, a virus had installed a code on his laptop which meant that 50% of its technology automatically started mining for cryptocurrency.
The complaint was sent to Starbucks via Twitter, who have since responded that the issue was indeed present at that location and that it has been resolved.
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en-gb"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Hi <a href="https://twitter.com/Starbucks?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Starbucks</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/StarbucksAr?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@StarbucksAr</a> did you know that your in-store wifi provider in Buenos Aires forces a 10 second delay when you first connect to the wifi so it can mine bitcoin using a customer's laptop? Feels a little off-brand.. cc <a href="https://twitter.com/GMFlickinger?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@GMFlickinger</a> <a href="https://t.co/VkVVdSfUtT">pic.twitter.com/VkVVdSfUtT</a></p>— Noah Dinkin (@imnoah) <a href="https://twitter.com/imnoah/status/936948776119537665?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">2 December 2017</a></blockquote>
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A Starbucks spokesman stated: “Last week, we were alerted to the issue and we reached out to our internet service provider, the Wi-Fi is not run by Starbucks, it’s not something we own or control,”
“We want to ensure that our customers are able to search the internet over Wi-Fi securely, so we will always work closely with our service provider when something like this comes up.”
“We don’t have any concern that this is widespread across any of our stores.”
Computer security companies admit that this form of Crypto-hacking is a latest example of malware to pop up, mostly used in public spaces or on websites that are very popular.
As the CEO of a company that uses blockchain technology to transfer money, Mr Michael Dunworth claims that even if you don’t have Bitcoin, hackers will as from now use the power of your processor for an algorithm used to find digital currencies anywhere in the world: “If you wanted to mine Bitcoin, you’d need a massive warehouse full of computers to have much success, so this is a much easier way for hackers to get access to cryptocurrency.”