What just happened? Coinhive, the in-browser cryptomining service that's proved a popular tool with hackers, is closing down next month. The company blames, amongst other things, the decline in value of cryptocurrency Monero following the market crash.

Having launched in 2017, Coinhive, a legitimate service, offered website owners a way to make money by earning Monero. It did this by inserting a JavaScript file on web pages that mined the cryptocurrency by utilizing visitors’ CPUs. The company made headlines when its service was discovered on The Pirate Bay later that same year.

TPB said that the miner was only being tested for a short period as a potential new method for generating revenue. The script was also found on Showtime websites and Salon.com. While this might have offered an alternative to ads, people weren’t happy about their hardware being used this way, and most websites removed it.

Where Coinhive did find popularity, however, was with hackers who surreptitiously placed its script on sites including PolitiFact and government domains. It was also found in Android apps. The practice became known as “cryptojacking” or “drive-by mining,” and led to Coinhive's domain being banned by antivirus software and ad-blocking browser extensions.

Now, Coinhive has announced that the crypto crash and falling price of Monero means the service will shutter on March 8.

“The drop in hash rate (over 50 percent) after the last Monero hard fork hit us hard,” Coinhive owners said. “So did the ‘crash’ of the cryptocurrency market with the value of XMR depreciating over 85 percent within a year. This and the announced hard fork and algorithm update of the Monero network on March 9 has lead us to the conclusion that we need to discontinue Coinhive.”

While few will be saddened by Coinhive’s demise, rival sites, including CoinIMP, have sprung up in recent times.