Popular Torrent client hijacks users' CPU power for profit
If you have upgraded or installed uTorrent recently, you may have an unwanted guest stealing your computer’s power and increasing your electric bill. Many users are reporting that the “world’s #1 BitTorrent client” was secretly installing a Litecoin miner called “Epic Scale”.
A Litecoin miner is a computer program that uses a huge amount of your computer’s resources to earn “Litecoins”, a Bitcoin-like cryptocurrency. Obviously, users were upset that their machines were suddenly slower and consuming more power. In a forum post, a customer support manager denied that it was a silent install and said that users must have accidentally accepted the software. Their forums are down for the time being.
However, our testing showed no warning, and no clear way to uninstall “Epic Scale”. TorrentFreak, a news site covering BitTorrent and piracy issues, says that their testing showed that the silent install only happens selectively, and that it took them several tries to even see the option to not install “Epic Scale”.