Cheating software for Call of Duty: Warzone found to contain malware

midian182

Posts: 6,794   +61
Staff member
In a nutshell: In what could be considered karmic justice, Activision has revealed that a piece of cheat software for Call of Duty: Warzone contained hidden malware designed to take control of victims' computers.

As reported by Vice, security researchers at Activision found that a Warzone cheat advertised on popular cheating forums contained more than met the eye. It surreptitiously installed a dropper on a device, which allowed other types of malware to be downloaded onto a computer.

"The dropper examined in this report, 'Cod Dropper v0.1,' can be customized to install other, more destructive, malware onto the targets' machines," the report reads.

One of the malware campaign's goals was installing miners on victims' PCs, using gamers' graphics cards to mine crypto without their knowledge.

Activision notes that the procedures required for "genuine" cheats to work also allow most malware tools to execute, such as bypassing system protections and escalating privileges. Many cheats recommend users disable their anti-virus software to ensure compatibility with a system, allowing hidden malware to infect PCs without the cheaters being alerted.

"While this method is rather simplistic, it is ultimately a social engineering technique that leverages the willingness of its target (players that want to cheat) to voluntarily lower their security protections and ignore warnings about running potentially malicious software," writes the publisher's researchers.

Warzone boasted 75 million players back in August 2020. While that figure is a lot lower these days, cheating remains a big problem. Activision has banned 300,000 people worldwide since launch, 60,000 of whom felt the banhammer on a single day, so don't cheat.

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sac39507

Posts: 386   +204
God I hope they do this to multiplayer cheats too. I hate cheaters with a passion. I was on last night and the game was full of cheaters doing impossible things.
 

Nobina

Posts: 3,058   +2,859
People serous about cheating pay hackers to make them software that only they and maybe a handful of other people use so it's difficult for anti-cheat to get 'em. This sounds like some "viral" hack edgy 13 year olds download.
 

GamerNerves

Posts: 89   +45
Untrustworthy cheating software, I can't believe it! The worst thing here is the further contribution to mining and yet being able to cheat, but I guess Activision is going to handle it?
 
All this holier than thou virtue signaling is hilarious as much as it it is gratuitous. No cheating here, but proliferation of malware is a blight to entire cyber landscape. As I recall these cheats began innocently by gamers in single player scenarios. Gaming is not all that old, it just seems that way. It is up to those minding the servers to keep us all safe. Data breaches leaking information today -- due to Big Tech indifference -- is destroying lives for years at a time.