ESEA Employee Creates Botnet To Mine Bitcoin From 14000 Computers
An employee of the gaming network ESEA has embedded a Bitcoin miner on customer computers without their knowledge. According to Wired, the North American e-sports league operators ESEA internally experimented a new beta client with ability to mine bitcoins, but they never released to public. However, an employee of the league operator, who had access to the server, went ahead and started distributing the code “for his own personal gain.” The software generated 30 Bitcoins until the discovery, which is equal to $3800.
Shortly after the release, official forum started to piled up with the complaints from community members about an extremely high GPU load in idle mode, anti-virus warnings and system crashes, which were apparently caused by the ESEA-beta client. A week ago, a member of community discovered Bitcoin mining code in the beta client.
The ESEA League operates a “anti-cheat” software in which all players must install anti-fraud software on their computer. This program monitors at the 14,000 paying customers that they do not cheat on “Counter-Strike”.
The company apologized to all those affected by the manipulation, company also announced to donate the fraudulently obtained amount from its own funds to the American Cancer Society ACS. In addition “premium customers” get a free month.