December 9, 2021

What to do when a Discord virus infects your system

Discord is a popular cross-platform application that hosted over 19 million active servers related to different genres and topics such as gaming, arts, marketing, finance, sports, and many others. It was reported that it currently has more than 150 million monthly active users and is one of the widely used platforms for chats, voice calls, and videos. The platform has different features that allow users many functionalities especially in data sharing and connection preferences.

However, a recent report revealed that hackers can potentially spread malware on Discord. 

Check Point Research (CPR) found early indicators of threat actors are seeking to use Discord’s infrastructure for malicious content. A threat actor can use malware to abuse the core features of Discord, including Discord API and Discord Bots. The malware has the ability to use Discord’s core features to take screenshots, download and run additional files, and run keyloggers, to then carry out an attack.

discord photo

How the Discord virus can infect you


There are different forms of Discord malware, and each has its own way of spreading and infecting your devices. Here are the two most common ones:

  1. Corrupted Discord installation file – users can modify their Discord Javascript files. If a hacker gains user permission, they can easily add malicious code to Discord’s client files. Once users launch the file, they also execute the code. The hacker can then access the user’s Discord data. This kind of attack is particularly difficult to detect – it can sometimes be classified as Discord traffic, or be disguised as a legitimate program. Most antivirus software will probably not recognize the corrupt code. However, if Discord detects that someone modified the files while it’s updating, it warns the user and asks whether to continue to run the client. You can also check files manually for suspicious additions.
  1. Through Discord itself – as with most social apps, Discord can also be a source of malware. Even though the filtering of malicious files and warning users if they encounter one, improve Discord security, the platform does not recognize all of them – especially new ones.


How to stay safe from a Discord-based malware

There are many other typical social engineering techniques on Discord such as phishing links via direct messages, bait-and-switch ads, etc. To mitigate the risk of getting your system infected with a Discord virus, we recommend these steps:

  1. Avoid visiting unsafe and unknown websites – suspicious links are always a red flag. Do not open links from untrusted sources or someone you don’t know.
  1. Only download files from trusted sources – do not download a file unless you’re sure of its safety.
  1. Regularly update your anti-virus software.
  1. Scan your system and monitor your network’s traffic – if Discord traffic exists while Discord is not installed on the system, you may have been infected by Discord-based malware.
  1. When working with Discord bots, we highly recommend hosting unknown bots on an external server – avoid running them on your personal machine.