Digital Arts, a Video-Sport Maker, Is Hacked

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Electronic Arts, the maker of popular video games including the FIFA, Madden, Sims and Medal of Honor series, announced Thursday that it is investigating a network breach in which the game’s source code and tools were stolen.

“We have already made security improvements and do not expect any impact on our games or our business,” said an EA spokeswoman, adding that the company is working with law enforcement agencies to conduct investigations. The company said no player data was affected.

According to online posts posted on an underground forum haunted by cybercriminals in early June, the hacker or hackers claimed to have stolen key source code for the 2021 edition of the popular soccer game FIFA, as well as data related to a game creation engine called Frostbite . EA confirmed that parts of the FIFA and Frostbite code had been stolen.

The posts were verified by Intel 471, a cybercrime intelligence company, which said the hackers were promoting about 800 gigabytes of data. The incident was first reported by Vice News on Thursday.

Michael DeBolt, Intel 471’s senior vice president of intelligence, said a hacker advertised stolen EA data in a Russian-language forum in early May. That hacker offered the stolen information for a starting bid of $ 500,000, Mr DeBolt said, but it was unclear whether a sale took place or whether there was a link between the different people promoting the data.

Now, he said, an argument has broken out on the online forums about which thieves can claim the crime and deserve to make money from the stolen material. “All other offers are fraudulent or fake,” wrote one user according to a screenshot.

“Surprisingly, cyber criminals can’t work well together and say nice things about each other,” DeBolt said.

He said at least one of the people provided evidence through screenshots of access to stolen EA files. “It contributes to the assessment that this claim could be credible and should be fully investigated,” he said.

EA is the latest in a series of companies to be hit by cyberattacks in recent months, including the world’s largest meat processor JBS and the Colonial Pipeline, which delivers fuel along the east coast. These hacks were ransomware attacks in which hackers attempted to shut down systems until a ransom was paid, but EA said it had not received any ransom demands.