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Call of Duty: Warzone

Activision report says hackers hid malware in Warzone cheats

Cheaters are getting hacked on their computers with new malware.

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Some cheaters received an unexpected surprise as a new Warzone hack has been discovered to have malware.

An extensive new report published Activision security research division reveals that a popular cheating tool that hackers use in Warzone was actually used to hack into players’ computers.

The report says that the company found a specific cheat was designed to be used “against gamers by masquerading as a cheat for Call of Duty: Warzone. This particular tool is considered a dropper, a piece of malware that is used to install or deliver an additional payload, such as credential stealing malware, on a target system or device.”

Further, the report reveals that the “dropper”, which is “a dropper is a means to an end, rather than the end itself – but still is a critical link in the chain,” continued malware. “The dropper examined in this report, “Cod Dropper v0.1”, can be customized to install other, more destructive, malware onto the targets’ machines,” Activision’s new report says.

This is the cheat in question, per the report and how it was accessed for users who downloaded it.

The creators of this cheat, as described in the report, were explaining to users how to then take over computers of users who installed the said cheat onto the PCs.

A message shared by Activision in their report exposes what the cheat was doing to users’ computers. Discord messages showcase the intentions behind this:

Players who used the said hack were then targeted on their own computer to have their data taken against their permission. The executive report published goes in depth as to what this software did.

The 26 page review concludes with that fact that it looks like a genuine cheat, but in fact is a malware that destroys your own computer and data.

“When it comes down to it, the dependencies for a “genuine” cheat to work are the same as those needed by most malware tools to successfully execute. System protections need to be bypassed or disabled, and privileges need to be escalated to allow the program to run correctly and/or establish persistence.”

“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.”

Cheating has been a major problem for Call of Duty: Warzone since the game’s launch in March 2020.

Activision has promised more streamlined communication on cheating situation recently, with Raven Software providing almost bi-weekly updates on ban waves. The studio recently banned 15,000 accounts, and they are approaching a total of 400,000 bans here soon.

Source: VICE