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Google bans cryptocurrency mining from Android Play Store

It followed Apple by banning on-device mining apps.

A visual representation of the digital Cryptocurrency

You can't mine cryptocurrencies like litecoin, monero, bitcoin, ethereum, ripple and dash on Android devices any more.

S3studio / Getty Images

Google banned cryptocurrency mining Android apps from the Android Play Store, following in Apple's footsteps.

The company continues to allow mining as long as the processing takes place in the cloud, but on-device mining on Android hardware is no longer allowed, CNET sister site ZDNet reports.

"We don't allow apps that mine cryptocurrency on devices. We permit apps that remotely manage the mining of cryptocurrency," it wrote in the updated Google Play developer program policies.

Google's move -- first noted by Android Police -- follows Apple's decision to ban cryptocurrency mining on both iOS devices and Mac in June.

Google noted that this new policy is consistent with the industry's approach.

Cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin can be "mined" by using multiple devices to solve complex mathematical problems that lock and unlock information in the blockchain, with rewards coming as each transaction is secured.

Mining requires a huge amount of processing power, so people have been investing in expensive graphics cards and using vast networks of devices.

Earlier this week, antivirus software pioneer John McAfee challenged hackers by offering a $100,000 bounty if they can break into his "unhackable" cryptocurrency wallet.

Updated at 9:25 am PST: Adds Google comment.