The ESEA server client is designed to prevent cheaters, hackers and griefers in competitive online games like Counter Strike and Team Fortress 2. However recently it was discovered that for the past couple of weeks, the software had actually been home to a Bitcoin mining piece of malware too.
The exploit was initially uncovered by an ESEA user, prompting the founders of ESEA to publicly admit a fault at their end, suggesting that it was an April fool’s joke gone wrong – one that should never have been released to the public. They blamed a server reset for the launching of the separate mining process, but a further investigation unveiled that the process had actually been running since 14th April.
Users began reporting higher than usual GPU load during idle states since the middle of April and it turns out that a piece of mining malware had been running alongside the anti-hack client since then. Ultimately it managed to generate over $3,500 worth of Bitcoins for the founders of ESEA.
But what about the few users who’s PCs apparently suffered hardware failures due to the continued high load on the GPU? The ESEA founders have no plans to compensate them, though they have announced a free month of premium membership for those that already pay and a bumped up prize pack for the winners of the next ESEA tournament.
The members aren’t happy though. Many feel as if their rights and initial terms and conditions agreements have been violated.
KitGuru Says: This all seems very shady. In my opinion, it sounds more like the ESEA founders were trying to make a bit of extra money on the side and it backfired. If my graphics card melted because of this, I’d be demanding compensation. What about you guys?
Thanks to PCGamesN for spotting this, but I think they got the wrong end of the stick with it.