Hackers use malware hidden in PC games to mine cryptocurrencies
Antivirus company Avast has discovered new malware called “Crackonosh” hidden in free versions of popular PC games. Malware hijacks your computer to mine cryptocurrencies.
Crackonosh software is hidden deep in versions of popular titles like Grand Theft Auto V, Far Cry 5, The Sims 4, and Jurassic World Evolution, as well as in various games in the NBA2K franchise. It should be noted that the affected versions of these games are not from legitimate sources but are pirated copies that appear on torrent forums and websites.
Once downloaded and installed, Crackonosh works its way into the computer’s processor to hijack it and use it to mine cryptocurrencies for hackers.
Previous reports show that Crackonosh has collected $ 2 million in crypto from hackers since June 2018. The coin that focuses on mining is Monero.
In an interview with CNBC, Daniel Benes, an Avast researcher, said that Crackonosh was “consuming all of the computer’s resources and making it stop responding”.
Benes also says that users will notice that their computer slows down and the performance continues to deteriorate due to overuse. Crackonosh can protect itself by disabling Windows updates and uninstalling your antivirus software.
Avast claims that Crackonosh is of Czech origin because the name means mountain god in local legend.
It is estimated that more than 200,000 Avast users have been affected by Crackonosh worldwide, with nearly 1,000 exposed to other devices each day. These are only Avast users affected, the total number of devices affected worldwide could be much larger.
Crackonosh is just the newest way to appeal to gamers
This is not the first time cyber criminals have used covert crackonosh in games to carry out attacks. While many of these attacks are aimed at players who buy software illegally, some can be found in legitimate copies of games sold online.
In early June, a hacking campaign was carried out on Steam, one of the most popular places to buy digital copies of games, according to Akamai, cyber attacks were carried out on players -19 pandemic occurred.
Benes concluded that as long as players continue to download illegal, unregulated games, attackers will target them and profit from them.
“The bottom line is that you can’t really get something for free, and if you try to steal software, there is a chance someone will try to steal something from you.”
According to BeinCrypto