There is a rumour going around the internet that the new and widely expected Watch_Dogs game leaked torrent contains Bitcoin miners. For those who don’t know what bitcoin mining is, here is a Wikipedia link.
This infected copy is reported to come with a rogue process that does CPU mining and can take 25% or more of your CPU speed. As such, your computer will feel sluggish and you it will likely be hard to get out. The process is called winlogin.exe according to what I’ve seen.
I think this is rather ironic since the subject of the game is hacking and controlling computers and systems :-).
There is a lengthy discussion going on on the NeoGAF forum.
This is not a big surprise as malware has been present on many torrent files. I do believe that this was a big issue with the torrent for GTA IV came out. The surprise is that people are shocked. Really? You download pirated content and you expect the people who spent time pirating it to not gain anything? I mean, sure, I’ve heard about pirating groups that do this for pleasure, or fun, but there will be others that do this just because they are nasty.
I don’t encourage piracy, but if you are going to download something like that, make sure you know how to troubleshoot your system and check it for anti-viruses, but also for rogue processes that might not necessarily be viruses.
Most importantly, don’t download shady torrents and files from unknown sources on your work computer, that you rely on to not crash, or to not lose your data. That’s my 2 cents on the subject.