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Abstractism Removed From Steam for Secretly Mining Cryptos Using Gamers’ PCs

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Milan, Italy - August 10, 2017: Steam store website. It is a digital platform by Valve Corporation. Offers digital rights management, multiplayer gaming, video streaming and social network. Steam logo. Source; shutterstock.com

Perhaps it’s because of the current low crypto prices, but some crypto miners are getting more creative in cutting down mining costs — by using other people’s computers to do the mining for them without their owners’ consent. A game called Abstractism was found allegedly mining cryptos using gamer PCs and Valve had to remove it from the Steam platform.

High CPU, GPU Usage

Abstractism is a 2D platformer game developed by Okalo Union, that requires little computer resources to run. However, players soon noticed that the game’s CPU and GPU usage was way too high for this type of game, according to a Polygon report.

Initially, Abstractism developer Okalo Union brushed off gamers’ complaints by saying that the game uses massive amounts of CPU and GPU because of its high graphics settings. However, tech-savvy gamers did not buy the explanation as the game’s visuals are too simple to cause such high GPU usage and they began suspecting that it might also be mining cryptocurrencies without players’ consent.

Suspicious Exe File, Questionable Items

According to Ars Technica, the game has a suspicious executable file named SteamService.exe, which was flagged as a potential threat by antimalware services. The file enabled “remote execution of commands,” which could be used when communicating with a crypto platform. What’s even more suspicious was that there is actually a legitimate SteamService.exe file, but it’s located in a different folder.

Gamers were also encouraged to keep their PCs turned on as long as possible so they can get rare items. In addition, some of the rare items being offered closely resembled items from other games.

Unauthorized Code, Scamming Customers

A few hours after accusations that the game was quietly crypto mining in the background, Valve finally acted and removed it from the Steam platform, along with other Okalo Union games. Valve explained that the removal of Abstractism was due to “shipping unauthorized code, trolling with content, and scamming customers with deceptive in-game items.

Abstractism Removed From Steam for Secretly Mining Cryptos Using Gamers’ PCs was originally found on [blokt] – Blockchain, Bitcoin & Cryptocurrency News.