League of Legends and other internet games fall prey to Monero (XMR) mining malware
Coinhive, the Monero mining malware has claimed another victim. This time, popular internet game, League of Legends has fallen victim to the malware that surreptitiously mines the cryptocurrency in the background. According to several gamers, the malware has infected several other internet games which use the Garena server. This is not the first time that the Monero (XMR) mining software has been on the wrong side of the law.
Earlier it was reported that the Monero mining software is being investigated by the Japanese police. Coinhive was reportedly involved in a cryptojacking case. The software also made headlines after UNICEF announced its crypto mining webpage based on Coinhive, called “The HopePage.” The Pirate Bay was also surreptitiously running a Coinhive browser-miner to mine cryptocurrency.
A Redditor called Lestergonzaga discovered that the malware had infected the League of Legends game. He reportedly unearthed the malware on the Garena server. The mining software runs in the background without alerting the players. Considering the game’s popularity, several thousands of players across the globe could’ve been mining Monero unbeknownst to them.
The developers of the game were immediately informed of the malware via Reddit. Several other gamers were of the opinion that the malware had infected other internet games on the Garena server. The Garena server took steps to remove the malware as soon as they saw the suggestion. They took measures to ensure that it was removed before it caused any further damage.
Officials from the Garena server said,
But, according to sources Garena removed the code. Furthermore, they also promised users that the team will ensure that the server is protected from such vulnerabilities in the future. According to Josh Grunzweig, 5% of the entire Monero which has been mined is via hacking. Josh Grunzweig is a researcher at the Palo Alto Networks.
It’s still unclear as to how long the malware has been running on the internet game before Lestergonzaga discovered it. In all probability, the malware has been running without the players’ knowledge for a long time. Online gaming servers and platforms have been targeted to run these cryptocurrency miners for a long time. The main reason being the discovery of their existence and tracing it back to the source is quite difficult.
And a large amount of CPU consumption by gaming servers ensures that the malware’s owner rakes in a hefty profit. Moreover, the difficulty in discovering malware which hijacks the CPU for mining ensures they can run undetected for a long time.
Image via League of Legends
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