We're not going to stand on our soap box and talk about how pirating games is wrong and how it robs publishers and developers of the fruits of their labor. We won't even bring up how piracy has led to increasingly intrusive and annoying DRM schemes. However, we will
point out that there are other reasons why you should think twice about pirating a PC game, one of the biggest being the risk of infection.
Can you really trust that torrent file to be free of malicious debris? Not always. There's a torrent floating around that claims to be an early version of Ubisoft's
forthcoming Watch Dogs
title, but what's hidden inside the archive is a Bitcoin miner.
At best, downloading the torrent and attempting to install the game will turn your PC into a money making machine for someone else, robbing you of GPU and CPU cycles in the process. That's a pretty crummy best case scenario, but it beats the worst case experiences some have reported, such as OS instability, blue screen of death errors, and high CPU consumption immediately after installing..
According to PlayAttack
, the virus installs a pair of .exe files, including winlogin.exe (don't confuse this with winlogon.exe, which is a legitimate Windows file), and itc.exe, which is a Bitcoin miner.
Watch Dogs releases to PC, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One in just a couple of days -- May 27, 2014. There will also be a version released to Wii U later this year.