Japanese court: Embedding software to Illegally mine cryptos is not “socially unacceptable”

In a case where the accused used Coinhive to illegally mine cryptos using other people’s computer power, a court in Japan has ruled that cryptojacking is not “socially unacceptable.”

According to the court, the website designer embedded Coinhive, a software used to illegally mine cryptos using his website visitors’ computer processing power. In his defense, the 31-year old said that Coinhive was not a virus.

In part, Toshihiro Homma, the judge presiding over the case at the Yokohama District Court, seemed to agree with the man’s line of reasoning saying that “his action does not constitute a crime as we cannot say embedding the program was socially unacceptable.” The man reportedly embedded the cryptojacking software towards the end of 2017.

While the man was acquitted for embedding Coinhive to illegally mine cryptos, the prosecutors were not ready to just let the man walk away. They pushed for roughly 904 U.S dollars (100,000 yen) as a fine for mining cryptos without the consent of his website visitors. The prosecutors argued that the computers used to access the website experienced increased power usage.

According to the accused:

The house and interrogations were troublesome. My job is related to the internet and I want to raise awareness about this ruling among users.

Although Coinhive is not a harmful software, it has been used by malicious individuals to illegally mine cryptos especially Monero. However, towards the end of last month, the developers of the software said that they will no longer be offering support from March 9, 2019.

As reported by CLN, the developers cited the drop in hash rate after the last Monero hard fork plus the upcoming hard fork and algorithm upgrade as the main reasons.

Do you think the court should have found the man guilty since he used other people’s computer power to illegally mine cryptos which he used for personal gains?

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Philip is an experienced blogger keen on staying updated with trends and news surrounding the blockchain and Bitcoin space. With several years of freelance experience in various industries, Philip brings his knowledge and experience into the crypto space.

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