A new Monero cryptojacking malware distributed by the hackers through the cracked versions of popular online games is successfully disabling antivirus programs. Using this, the hackers are mining cryptocurrency in over a dozen countries. The malware has been named “crackonosh”, and apparently, this has been active since June 2018. Crackonosh means “the mountain spirit” in Czech folklore, and researchers have proof to believe that the creator(s) of the malware are from the Czech Republic. The malware is to be found in a pirated version of Grand Theft Auto V, NBA 2K19, and Pro Evolution Soccer 2018.
Avast experts were the ones who found the malware in the files of unlicensed projects. The experts conducted research, and they found that using the hacked games, the hackers are essentially using the compromised user’s PC to mine cryptocurrency. However, the experts are yet to come up with an explanation as to how the hackers could place the malware in the first place.
As per the reports published by the Avast experts, a total of more than 220 thousand personal computers have been infected, and that using that the hackers have earned over $2 million. The experts have made it clear that this was the result of three years of using the malware to mine cryptocurrency.
Analysts were able to calculate that, on average, about 800 systems are infected per day; however, they also have reasons to believe that the correct number might be higher than that. Most often, the system becomes infected after installing pirated versions of such popular projects as NBA 2K19, Grand Theft Auto V, Far Cry 5, The Sims 4 and Jurassic World Evolution.
Once a user downloads the pirated version of the above mentioned popular games, the Crackpnosh virus becomes automatically activated and it steams the power of the PC and serves the hackers. Users whose computers might have been hacked using this method may notice a general slowdown in their system, increased power consumption and increased electricity bills.