Sampson wrote in a blog post that his company began tracking "hundreds of thousands of error reports" starting on June 26th via its web-based game streaming platform. The errors related to calls to various ad platforms according to Sampson, which was peculiar given that Rainway doesn't have ads.
"We ruled out immediately that we had been compromised in some way and began to see malicious adware was attacking these users," Sampson continued. "As the errors kept flowing in we took a glance at what these users had in common; they didn’t share any hardware, their ISP’s were different, and all of their systems were up to date. However, one thing did stand out — they played Fortnite."
After going some additional research, it was discovered that an app download proclaiming to provide Fortnite players with free V-Bucks and an aimbot for deftly hitting targets was the culprit for the error messages. Once installed, the software is able to successfully execute a Man in the Middle Attack (MiTM) by spreading adware through a victim's system and modifying page requests to add in a tag for the Adtelligent ad service.
Rainway then attempted to file an abuse report for the offending app with its host, and the file was "removed promptly". However, by that point, the damage had already been done. The app had been downloaded over 78,000 times by Fortnite players looking to gain the upper hand over the millions of other players around the globe.
When all was said and done, Rainway received over 380,000 error reports relating to this Fortnite malware.
"While it should go without saying, I think you should not download random programs. An excellent personal security tip is that if something is too good to be true, you’re probably going to need to reformat your PC," Sampson continues. He also doesn't absolve Epic Games from blame, writing, "Epic could do a better job at educating their users on these malicious programs and helping them understand how airtight Fortnite's systems are at preventing cheating."