Searching for pirated content on the Internet can be very dangerous for users looking for entertainment without paying large companies. A few days ago Disney released the new version of the classic Mulan tape through Disney+, its own streaming platform, quickly becoming the most sought-after film according to TorrentFreak, a website that provides a weekly statistic on the most downloaded movies on torrent sites.
This was exploited by threat actors who often hide malicious content in these torrents, so after a quick scan, the ESET security firm found nearly 20,000 torrents with the name “Mulan” loaded with malicious files.
Luis Lubeck, ESET’s cybersecurity specialist, says: “We must keep in mind the risks of downloading this kind of content, as malicious hackers take advantage of the topics of greatest interest, such as the release of popular movies or video games, to deploy malware.”
According to Lubeck, when searching for the term “mulan.2020”, 18,000 files were found with signs of malicious activity. It should be noted that, while torrent files are also used for legitimate purposes, their most popular use is to download pirated content.
The most frequent threats associated to torrent downloads are “houdrat” infections, a malicious code used to mine cryptocurrencies using the processing capabilities of infected devices. Another popular threat is LNK, which refers to redirecting to malicious websites where there are many other security risks. The following graphic shows the increase in torrent search, which coincides with the release of the Disney film.
An analysis by Google Trends also shows the gradual increase in searches related to the term “Mulan” in recent days.
This is not a risk ignored by the enthusiastic community of torrent websites. On the most popular sites users are frequently warned about this kind of malicious content disguised as series, movies or video games, some sites even contain filters for detecting possibly indexed malicious code. For their part, security firms recommend that users remain alert to the possible download of malicious content hidden in torrent files, as an infection could have fatal consequences for their devices.
He is a cyber security and malware researcher. He studied Computer Science at Miami and started working as a cyber security analyst in 2008. He is actively working as an cyber security investigator. He also worked for security companies like Cisco. His everyday job includes researching about new cyber security incidents. Also he has deep level of knowledge in enterprise security implementation.