It’s frowned upon by Blizzard, but if you’ve ever used third-party tools while playing Hearthstone you might want to reconsider. According to a report by technology company Symantec, you could be leaving your PC open to malware.
If you’re new to WoW’s free-to-play card game, checking out our best Hearthstone decks for beginners will serve you better than cheating.
A post on the Symantec blog warns that many of Hearthstone’s seemingly harmless third-party add-ons are in fact scams, trojans, keyloggers, and Bitcoin malware designed to deceive unsuspecting users.
The report notes that although Trojan.Coinbitclip claims to be a gold and dusk hack, it actually swaps the user’s Bitcoin addresses from their clipboard. "Symantec has recently observed Trojan.Coinbitclip posing as a Hearthstone gold- and dust-hacking tool," it says. "Because Bitcoin addresses are long and include random characters, many users who mine Bitcoins use a clipboard to facilitate the process.
"Trojan.Coinbitclip hijacks the user’s clipboard and replaces the user’s Bitcoin address with one from its own list—this is how the malware steals someone’s Bitcoin. The sample we have observed has 10,000 Bitcoin addresses in its body. The Trojan selects an address from the list that most closely resembles the address it is replacing."
Also flagged as unsafe is Hearthstone Hack Tool v2.1 that's labelled a “total scam”.
A number of deck-tracking tools are also named in the report as suspect - full details of what Symantec think can be found here.
"To stay protected against malware, Symantec advises users to keep their computers, security software, and other programs up-to-date by applying the latest patches and updates," says the report. "We also recommend that users avoid downloading third-party software for Hearthstone, as they could come with additional malware."