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Spider-Man: No Way Home Torrents Have Hidden Virus


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Unwitting torrent users downloading MCU blockbuster Spider-Man: No Way Home have been treated to a surprise with Monero crypto-mining malware. The latest installment in the MCU Spider-Man trilogy sees stars Tom Holland and Zendaya returning as Peter Parker and MJ, respectively. They are also joined by returning stars of other Spider-Man films, not only from this universe of characters, but also past iterations. Those actors include Alfred Molina as Doc Ock, Willem Dafoe as Green Goblin and Jamie Foxx as Electro. The film also saw Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield reprise their versions of Spider-Man.

Spider-Man: No Way Home has been breaking box office records across the globe since its original theatrical release on December 17th. It's the first movie since Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker to gross over $1 billion globally, posting 2019-level numbers at the box office. However, with the ongoing pandemic continuing to be a concern due to the spread of the Omicron variant, some viewers may be looking for an alternate way to watch the movie - which could have serious ramifications.

According to MUO, a torrent download file of Spider-Man: No Way Home has been circulating online recently, and is infected with a Monero cryptominer. Monero is a decentralized cryptocurrency, and is one of the most popular in the world, which is consistently being mined. The file in question is suspected to be of Russian origin, and apparently the torrent is identified as "spiderman_net_putidomoi.torrent.exe."

Once the file is downloaded, it is said to add exclusions to features such as Windows Defender to prevent the malware miner's actions from being tracked. Eventually, it begins mining Monero for the benefit of its unknown creators. This miner runs for extended periods of time, slowing down the device it is on, while requiring very high CPU usage. Ultimately, the usage created by miners of this kind can be incredibly harmful for many devices, potentially leading to a variety of issues. Before Spider-Man: No Way Home had even reached theaters, Kaspersky previously also warned that cybercriminals were using the film to attract people to a phishing campaign designed to steal banking information.

It seems that not only can downloading pirated copies of media pose legal risks, but it can also make torrent users susceptible to an onslaught of digital threats. Purchasing trusted and dependable anti-malware software can help mitigate some risks of cryptojacking and cybercrime. But perhaps, the most effective method toward reducing these threats in similar situations is to avoid downloading illegal torrents, and simply watch content like Spider-Man: No Way Home in theaters or on official streaming platforms like Disney+, Netflix, HBO Max, and others.
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