Posted on June 11, 2021 at 2:40 PM
Gaming giant Electronic Arts (E.A) has become the latest company to fall victim to a hacking attack, as the firm announced on Thursday.
The creator of popular games like Medal of Honor Series, Sims, Madden, and FIFA, stated that it was investigating a hacking incident that resulted in the theft of its game source code.
A spokesperson of the company stated that they made improvements on the company’s security and no further impact is expected on the platform.
The spokesperson added that the incident has been reported to law enforcement for further investigation. The firm also noted that all player data ware safe and not impacted by the breach.
The hackers claimed that they have possession of an important source code for the 2021 edition of the FIFA game. They also admitted to stealing Frostbite, a gaming creation engine. The hackers posted their claims last week on a darknet forum. E. A has also confirmed that some parts of Frostbite and FIFA source codes have also been stolen.
800 gigabytes of data placed on advert
Cybersecurity firm Intel 471, who reviewed the post, stated that threat actors have placed about 800 gigabytes worth of data for an advert on the darknet.
Senior vice president of intelligence at Intel 471 Michael DeBolt stated that a hacker has advertised stolen E.A. data on a Russian-language forum earlier last month. He said the threat actor placed a starting bid of $500,000 on the stolen data. However, it’s not clear whether the hacker has sold the data. Also, the data could have been connected to more than a single threat actor following an argument on the darknet forum.
DeBolt stated that there is currently a row on the online forums over which threat actor can claim the data and deserves to make money off it. A user on one of the forums stated that all the offers he has seen are fake or scams.
DeBolt stated that one of the supposed threat actors, in a bid to prove they have the real data, showed some evidence through screenshots of the EA accessed files. He said the screenshot gives credence that the stolen file is genuine. However, DeBolt added that more investigation is needed before anything can be completely proven.
A surge in ransomware attack
Some people have tagged the U.S. to be in a ransomware crisis following the series of attacks companies in the region have experienced.
The attack on Colonial Pipeline caused a lot of disruptions, as the company’s operations were temporarily shut down, causing buying panic among consumers along the East Coast.
Already, Colonial Pipeline paid $4.3 million to the threat actors responsible for the hack. But U.S. agencies say they have recovered most of those funds through a counter-hacking operation.
E.A. stated that the company has not received any ransom request from anyone regarding the stolen data. But it didn’t confirm whether it’s willing to pay a ransom if a request is eventually made. The hackers claim that the buyer of the stolen data will have the capability to explore all EA services.
Apart from their posts on the darknet forums, the threat actors also shared a small selection of screenshots to demonstrate they have the stolen data. However, none of the internal data was distributed publicly. The hackers are seriously trying to sell the information. But it’s not clear whether they have already offered the data back to EA in exchange for a ransom.
In most hacking cases, the threat actor goes to the victimized company who are expected to pay higher for the data. They take the alternative route of selling at a darknet forum when the company refuses to comply with them.