Cyble Research & Intelligence Labs has revealed that the fan game Super Mario 3: Mario Forever, a legitimate installer, includes a harmful payload filled with malicious software. It can steal data from compromised computers and burden them with resource-intensive crypto-mining software that operates covertly in the background.

According to Cyble’s report, the game’s installer covertly installs XMR Miner. This software runs a Monero (XMR) cryptocurrency miner in the background that consumes the user’s computing resources. This activity benefits a malicious actor who earns crypto while hiding transaction details from the public. Monero is recognized as a prominent “privacy coin”.

XMR’s transactions are difficult to track on the blockchain, similar to Bitcoin (BTC) or Ethereum (ETH). Regulators have issued orders to numerous exchanges prohibiting the use of XMR. This move is to deter criminals from exploiting the currency for money laundering or extracting illicit gains.

Cyble characterizes the associated Umbral Stealer as an information-stealing tool that is both lightweight and efficient. This malicious software can seize sensitive data, such as passwords, webcam images, and cryptocurrency wallet information. It focuses explicitly on wallets belonging to networks like Ethereum, ZCash, and Bytecoin. Notably, it seeks out Atomic Wallet, which had recently suffered a hacking incident resulting in a loss of $35 million.

Over time, hackers have increasingly relied on crypto as a prevalent tool to demand ransom from their victims when stealing sensitive information. Unlike wire transfers, crypto transactions are irreversible and better protect a hacker’s identity.

Super Mario involves crypto malware.

Super Mario’s Epic Game Franchise – Mario Forever

The game was initially released in the early 2000s and quickly gained popularity among gamers worldwide. Over the years, Mario Forever has undergone numerous updates and iterations, continuously captivating players with its timeless charm. The game’s fan base has grown exponentially, with millions of players immersing themselves in its colourful worlds and challenging levels. 

Mario Forever’s success can be attributed to its homage to the iconic Super Mario series while incorporating modern graphics and mechanics. Earlier this year, the game franchise gained more popularity with the release of The Super Mario Bros. Movie. Players have collectively spent countless hours exploring its vibrant landscapes, engaging in epic boss battles, and collecting coveted power-ups.