The Fortnite data breach has impacted millions of players. Is your information safe?
It’s all fun and games until someone gets breached.
Sadly, this is not the first data breach to impact gamers and it is surely not the last.
With data breaches on the rise, potential threats to personal information are becoming more and more common every day. Some major data breaches that have occurred so far in 2019 include the City of Baltimore Hack and the recent Healthcare Data Breaches.
Is your information safe? If you or a loved one has a Fortnite account, you may already be in jeopardy.
Read more to learn about the recent Fortnite data breach, other data breaches that have impacted the gaming industry, and how to protect your information online.
The Fortnite Data Breach
By now, we are sure that you have heard of the wildly popular battle royale game Fortnite. Loved by people of all ages, Fortnite has taken the world by storm.
In January, a flaw in Fortnite’s login system allowed cybercriminals to impersonate other Fortnite players. This allowed them to take over other player’s accounts with ease.
The flaw was discovered in November of 2018 and was not successfully resolved until January of 2019, almost 2 months later.
Once in the account, the hackers had access to the cards on file for the accounts to make in-game purchases and then transfer those purchases from the hijacked account into their own account.
So – how exactly did they gain access to these accounts?
Due to a flaw in the Fortnite system, hackers were able to steal pieces of code that identified who the player was when they logged into the game. Hackers gained access to the code whenever a player clicked on a malicious link. This allowed them to copy the code and access the accounts without needing a password to sign in.
Once in the account, hackers had access to personal account information, the player’s contact lists, and could even hear the player’s private voice chats during the game.
Other Fortnite Data Breaches
Unfortunately, this is not the first time Fortnite has experienced security problems. Last summer, in August of 2018, there was an issue with the Fortnite app for Android devices.
At the time, Fortnite was not made available through the Google Play Store. Instead of playing the game on a different device, some Fortnite users downloaded the app through an Epic Games site instead of the verified App Store. This left room for possible malicious content to be downloaded easily onto Android devices.
Fortnite is now offered through the Google Play Store, allowing users a secure download.
This may seem frightening, especially if you or someone you know is paying Fortnite. However, they are not the only video game that has been breached.
Other Video Game Data Breaches
The online gaming industry is not as secure as we are lead to believe.
Throughout the years, many other popular online games and video game companies have been breached. Some of the most recent gaming hacks include:
Town of Salem
Town of Salem is an online, multiplayer computer game. This game has quickly risen in popularity and has attracted over 300,000 players every month.
This data breach occurred in January of 2019 and exposed the information of 7.6 million players. The hack was not announced by the game marker – it was discovered when an anonymous person sent a copy of the breached information to the data breach indexing service DeHashed.
After several weeks, the game maker, BlankMediaGroup, announced that the problem was resolved by removing the game’s backdoors, which allowed the hackers access to their player’s personal information in the first place.
During this breach, hackers obtained:
- Email addresses
- IP addresses
- Game/forum activity
Armor Games is a computer-based online gaming website. They offer a variety of different games, thus attracting an array of different players.
The Armor Games data breach also occurred in January of 2019. The breach was detected at the beginning of the month of January and announced to their players on January 29, 2019. 11 million players were affected by this breach.
Armor Games was one of the many websites who were hacked during this time – MyFitnessPal, HauteLook, and DubSmash were among the other sites who were impacted. The website data from Armor Games was later put up for sale on the darknet.
Information stolen from users include:
- Public profile information
- Email addresses
- IP addresses
This data breach isn’t as recent, but it is proof that even massive companies who are household names, like Sony, can be breached.
The breach occurred in April of 2011. After the breach, Sony shut down the entire PlayStation network to prevent further damage. It is said that the breach occurred due to lack of security measures – the hackers were able to take over a computer of a system administrator through a phishing email scam.
Sony PlayStation users had the following information stolen:
- Full names
- Logins – both usernames and passwords
- Security questions and answers
- Credit card information – including security code
Keeping Your Information Safe Online
Like anything, protecting your gaming information can be a struggle. As hackers become more and more stealthy, we must also do more to protect our personal information.
Some best ways to protect yourself online while online gaming include:
- Only play authorized games. Make sure that you are only downloading and playing games from an authorized source. Downloading games elsewhere can leave room for hackers to create a malicious game.
- Do not share your gaming profile information. Sharing usernames, passwords, or other login credentials with others can increase the risk that your information will end up in the wrong hands.
- Update your software. It is important to keep both your device and your game up to date. Updates prevent hackers from accessing backdoors, so make sure to keep up with any software updates for your devices.
- Beware of scams. Other players or entities may try to trick you into giving away personal information to access your account. Beware of any messages or other players that do not seem legit.
- Set guidelines. As with anything, set guidelines for yourself and others in your household when playing online games.
Whether you are a Fortnite player, online gamer, or a concerned family member or friend, we hope that you have gotten some clarity from this blog.
It is important to protect yourself before something bad happens to avoid any possible damage to your information and identity.
Thanks for reading!