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BioWare latest game company hit by hackers

BioWare, the game development studio behind triple-A titles like Mass Effect and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, said hackers were able to crack into the forums for one of its old video games and might have stolen sensitive information about the site’s users on Friday.

This really is not a good quarter for video game developers, which have faced a lot of security issues. BioWare marks the fourth high-profile game developer that has had its site hacked and information compromised. BioWare said the forum hackers broke into was for an older and less-used game, but that information could be related to current existing Electronic Arts online accounts. The company is sending out emails to the forum’s users, saying the information stored on the site might have been compromised.

The information compromised in the attack on BioWare’s Neverwinter Nights forum did not include credit card information, the company said. But it did include names, dates of birth and email addresses that the hackers could use for spam purposes or to sell on secondary markets.

Hacker group Lulz Security, or “LulzSec,” said it recently broke into Bethesda Softworks’ secure network and could have compromised information regarding 200,000 of the company’s game players, but chose not to do so. The group previously broke into Sony’s Sony Pictures site and invited readers to “plunder those 3.5 million music coupons while they can.”

Sega’s online network was also hacked and around 1.3 million accounts might have been compromised, the company said. Again, names, dates of birth and email addresses might have been up for grabs in the attack. LulzSec broke character for a short while to say that it “loved the Dreamcast,” Sega’s last home gaming console, and would help the company hunt down its attackers.

Sony was also forced to bring down its online gaming network, the PlayStation Network (PSN), and beef up security as a result of an earlier attack by an as-yet unidentified hacker group. That cyber attack on Sony led to hackers stealing sensitive information from potentially more than 100 million PSN and Station.com users. Sony said credit card information could have been compromised in that attack.


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