Cryptocurrency malware discovered in League of Legends Philippines Garena client

cryptocurrency

A major debacle has caused quite a furor among League of Legends players in the Philippines. Players discovered that the League of Legends Garena client had a malware in the form of a cryptocurrency miner. Most gamers did not notice that the process worked silently in the background, connected to a certain Coinhive.com which mines Monero.

malware malware

Bitcoin Discovery

That was until Filipino Reddit user Lestergonzaga discovered the Coinhive malware. Lester initially wrote it on the official League of Legends subreddit. The post gained a lot of traction with over 12,000 upvotes. Most of the comments point blame at Garena for allowing this practice. At the same time, other users pointed out that it’s not just gamers in the Philippines encountering this problem, but anyone who uses the Garena+ client.

Lestergonzaga also took to the Philippines subreddit to inform other Filipino players about the League of Legends/Garena issue. Even though Lester has since deleted his post, other users chimed in. Some even brought the cryptocurrency malware to the attention of various Facebook gaming groups.

League of Legends Philippines

League of Legends Philippines Resolution

Fortunately, news of the cryptocurrency malware made the rounds until it reached the League of Legends Philippines Facebook page. They have since released a statement concerning the incident. Apparently, shady individuals hacked or modified the client which allowed them to insert a Javascript code. The code performed blockchain mining operations for the Monero cryptocurrency. According to the team, there were no downsides other than increased CPU usage. So far, no one reported any theft of sensitive information. The League of Legends Philippines team has also assured players that engineers have removed the code earlier today; there are no other foreseeable issues.

Although the issue has been resolved, it still remains a cause for concern. After all, it all seemed too easy to insert a code in a game’s client such as Garena. Knowing that thousands of players in the Philippines play League of Legends, and millions more around the world share that hobby, it follows that stricter and increased security measures must be provided. Just as well, Riot wouldn’t want an official demonstration sport in the 2018 Asian Games to be a playground for miners of Monero, Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies.

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