Electronic Arts (EA), a videogame publisher, has become the latest victimg of hacking as cybercriminals stole and started selling data that contains game source code for FIFA 21, the Frostbite engine and other game development tools.
EA, the publisher of Battlefield, FIFA and The Sims, has confirmed the data breach, Motherboard reported.
“We are investigating a recent incident of intrusion into our network where a limited amount of game source code and related tools were stolen,” an EA spokesperson said. “No player data was accessed, and we have no reason to believe there is any risk to player privacy.”
The hackers claimed on underground web hacking forums that they have full capability of exploiting on all EA services.
The hackers said they have taken the source code for FIFA 21, as well as code for its matchmaking server.
Other stolen information includes proprietary EA frameworks and software development kits (SDKs), bundles of code that can make game development more streamlined.
Selected Operating Highlights about EA during fiscal year
Net bookings for fiscal 2021 was $6.190 billion (+15%)
Delivered 13 new games and had more than 42 million new players join network
FIFA 21, life to date, has more than 25 million console/PC players
FIFA Ultimate Team players grew 16% and FUT matches were up 180%.
Apex Legends has more than 100 million players life to date on console/PC, and Season 8 had more than 12 million weekly average players
Record number of new players joined Madden NFL on console/PC during fiscal 21
The Sims 4, life to date, has almost 36 million players and delivered its sixth consecutive year of franchise growth.
Previous attacks on gaming giants
Recently, hackers stole CD Projekt Red’s source code for Cyberpunk 2077 and The Witcher 3.
Last year, Japanese video game company Nintendo admitted that over 160,000 user accounts were compromised where hackers took the login IDs and passwords.
Nintendo disabled the ability to log into a Nintendo Account through a Nintendo Network ID (NNID) which became the gateway for hackers.
“Proprietary source code getting leaked is definitely not good news. This is serious IP theft where hackers are able to harvest precious information in their hands; being able to see the inner workings of a game, exploit security gaps and even reverse-engineer games for malicious purposes,” Prakash Bell, Head of Customer Success, Regional SE Lead, Check Point Software Technologies, India & SAARC, said.
Besides loss of reputation from the leak, intellectual property loss, the impacted companies also suffer huge monetary loss both from investments made and future revenue. Reports are out that the source code in the EA Games data leak is already being advertised on the dark net.
“It’s not surprising, as hackers are quick to monetize what they steal. And selling such proprietary information, like source code from EA Games, can gain hackers big money on the dark net,” Prakash Bell said.