An analysis by security researchers of 48,000 extensions for Google’s Chrome browser uncovered many that are used for fraud and data theft, actions that are mostly undetectable to regular users.

The study, due to be presented Thursday at the Usenix Security Symposium in San Diego, forecasts growing security problems around extensions as cybercriminals tap into the rich data contained in Web browsers for profit.

They found 130 outright malicious extensions and 4,712 suspicious ones, engaged in a variety of affiliate fraud, credential theft, advertising fraud and social network abuse.
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