The modern illegal downloading scene is relatively care free compared to the days of yore. Back when software like Limewire and Kazaa dominated the landscape, it was easy and common to download something that wasn’t what you wanted and if you didn’t check that the file size and file type matched up to that song you wanted and not a 600kb .exe file, you’d end up with a new piece of malware setting up shop in your system. That doesn’t happen much anymore; that is unless, you’d previously downloaded anything from release group MegaHertz.
Relatively new to the warez release scene, MegaHertz has been releasing cracked versions of popular software since February this year, providing programs like Malwarebytes anti-malware, SmartFTP, BurnAware Professional and other software completely free of charge. However, it’s now been discovered that each and every release the group has ever put out, has included a secretive bit of malware that has been harvesting details on the people that installed them.
According to the TorrentFreak breakdown, one user noticed a recent installation sending out data on port 25. That data, turned out to be his IP address, his username and hard drive serial number. It’s not clear why MegaHertz would want to collect this information on users or what it ever plans to do with it, but from now on at least, it’s unlikely to be able to do so – at least not under its current name. MegaHertz has become persona non-grata in the warez scene.
One suggestion from commenters is that MegaHertz was a sting operation by law enforcement, or that a group was infiltrated by an FBI cracker.
KitGuru Says: We may never know at this point. While we don’t condone illegal downloads here at KitGuru, we do want you to be safe; so don’t download kids, but if you have to, do it from reputable sources only.