John Smedley steps down as Daybreak Game Company CEO and president

July 23, 2015 - James Fudge

Long-time Daybreak Game Company chief executive officer and president John Smedley has stepped down from the position, GamesBeat reports. Current chief operating officer Russell Shanks will step into the top executive position effective immediately.

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Multiple Epic Games forums suffer security breach

July 15, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

If you have a forum account for any Epic Games titles, you may want to change your password as soon as possible. Epic Games has informed the community via email that forums for several of its games and game development tools have been compromised by unknown hackers. It is advising community members to change their passwords - particularly if those passwords and usernames are used for other services on the Internet.

According to Epic, forums for UDK (Unreal Development Kit), Infinity Blade, Gears of War, Bulletstorm, and multiple Unreal Tournament games have been compromised.

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Report: Lizard Squad attacks Daybreak Game Studio's servers

July 10, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

It looks like hacking group Lizard Squad is not taking Daybreak Game Studio CEO John Smedley's comments about getting one of its members lying down. The hacking group has attacked several of the servers of several Daybreak Game titles in what Daybreak Games CEO categorized as a "minor" Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack.

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Lizard Squad member ordered to fight against other hackers, gets no jail time for Xbox Live and PSN attacks

July 8, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

As is a common tactic with law enforcement (even in countries like Finland), instead of punishing notorious Lizard Squad member Julius "zeekill" Kivimaki with jail time for the 50,700 computer crime charges he was convicted of, he has been ordered to serve as an agent to fight against other hackers, apparently.

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Report: Canadian Security Intelligence Service website taken down by hacker(s)

July 1, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

SC Magazine reports that unknown hackers managed to temporarily shut down the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) website on Monday night using a DDoS attack. This is the second time in the last couple of weeks that hackers have managed to take the site offline. The attack(s) are being attributed to a lone hackers who were formerly associated with hacktivist group Anonymous, working on their own.

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Prosecutor: Canadian teen took 'sadistic delight' in harassing, swatting targets

June 30, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Last month we reported on the Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada teen and League of Legends player (and also reportedly a member of the notorious hacking group Lizard Squad) who pleaded guilty to over 23 charges stemming from his one-man campaign of harassment in North America before he was finally arrested in December of last year.

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Anonymous targets India's 'Telecom Regulatory Authority' after exposing thousands of emails

April 27, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

India is in the midst of a fight over net neutrality rules. The agency in charge of dealing with the issue, the Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRAI), recently asked citizens to weigh in on the issue during a public comment period and millions of citizens responded.

But during the course of publishing those comments, the agency also published personal information of everyone who responded, incensing millions of India's population and drawing the attention of activists and even hacktivist groups in the country including Anonymous.

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Report: popular online gambling sites taken out by DDoS attacks

April 14, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Poker News and several other publications that focus on the ins and outs of online poker/gambling are reporting that two popular online gambling services were taken offline this weekend. Betfair and PokerStars were both offline over the weekend, according to the reports and are still suffering from connectivity issues today.

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Report: Some Twitch streamers may be inflating viewer numbers with bots

March 27, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Security research firm and antivirus software maker Symnatec says that Twitch viewership may be being inflated by bots. The firm uncovered what it calls a "Twitch botnet marketplace" where people can "take a shortcut and generate a large audience of bots for their Twitch channels" (though Symantec points out these bots are being used on other video-related platforms as well.

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PSA: you might want to change your Twitch password...

March 23, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Game streaming service Twitch is warning users on its blog and individually through email that they may want to change their passwords as soon as possible. The Amazon-owned company says that it recently suffered a security breach.

"We are writing to let you know that there may have been unauthorized access to some Twitch user account information."

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'Teslacrypt' Ransomware Targets Gamers

March 13, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

According to this BBC report, gamers are being inordinately targeted by ransomware. According to the report, the ransomware seeks out important files from games (like saves) and encrypts them so that they will no longer run. Then the program demands that they pay at least $500 (£340) in Bitcoins. Around 40 different games are being targeted on infected machines. Games being targeted include Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Minecraft and World of Tanks.

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Does Sony Leave Hacked PSN Account Owners Holding The Bag?

March 12, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

A NeoGAF thread highlighting another thread on Reddit tells the tale of one PlayStation Network user who was victimized by someone hacking into his account (and running up a massive bill) and then being victimized by Sony Support, according to his retelling, at least.

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Nintendo 3DS Firmware Update Kills Web Browser Exploit

March 3, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

The party is officially over for those who were using an exploit in the 3DS web browser to load unsigned code. Nintendo released a new firmware update today that eliminates a web browser exploit that allowed users to inject code within downloaded games. The exploit was being used by some to load and run pirated Game Boy Color ROMs, made it so that games could be played regardless of region-locking, and even allowed some to bypass actually paying for micro-transactions in Nintendo's first free-to-play puzzle game for 3DS, Pokémon Shuffle.

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Raptr Suffers Security Breach

February 4, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

In an email sent to Raptr subscribers today from Raptr CEO Dennis Fong, the social gaming platform revealed that it had suffered a security breech and urged users to take necessary precautions to avoid any potential danger.

In the letter, Fong said that, while the threat to users is minor, some personal data may have been compromised including "user names, email addresses, password hashes, and some first and last names."

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Cybersecurity Firm Says Russian Hackers May Have Been Involved in Sony Pictures Hack

February 4, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

A new report on Computer Business Review suggests that it might have been hackers from Russia - and not anyone associated with the North Korean government - who hacked Sony Pictures.

According to cybersecurity firm Taia Global, Sony employees in Russia, India and Asia were spear-phishing emails containing a PDF and remote access trojan (RAT). This allowed hackers from Russia to gain access Sony Pictures Entertainment's networks.

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Report: Gamers and Hacktivists Big Players in DDoS Attacks

January 27, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

A new report from Arbor Networks (cited by the BBC in this report suggests that hacktivists and gamers are becoming big users of new (but not necessarily technically sophisticated) attacks to take web sites offline. The new report from Arbor Networks examines 10 years of distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks.

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Sony Corp. Delays Q1 Results By One Month Due To November Security Breach

January 26, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Sony announced today that it plans to delay its first quarter earnings by a month in the wake of its latest security breach at the hands of a hacking group. The company was hacked and had data stolen at the hands of a group called the Guardians of Peace. The hack was supposedly in response to Sony Pictures' plan to release the James Franco and Seth Rogan comedy The Interview.

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Hacker Group Lizard Squad Hit By Security Breach

January 20, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

The group that took credit for bringing down the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live during the recent Christmas break is having some hack trouble of its own according to reports from the BBC and Ars Technica.

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UK Man Arrested For Christmas Day Attacks on Xbox Live and PlayStation Network

January 16, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

A series of tweets this morning from the official Twitter account for the UK law enforcement agency South East Regional Organized Crime Unit reveals that an unnamed 18-year-old has been arrested in South Port, England for his alleged part in the Christmas day dedicated denial of service (DDoS) attacks that took both PlayStation Network and Xbox Live offline.

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Sony Uses CES Keynote to Condemn Hackers

January 6, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

During his keynote address this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Sony boss Kazuo Hirai condemned the hackers who breached the firm's internal network and stole data. The Guardians of Peace hacker group attacked Sony in a bid to stop the release of the movie, The Interview, which made fun of North Korean leader Kim Jung Un. The FBI claims that the group is directly tied to the North Korean government, though some security experts believe it was an inside job perpetrated with the help of a disgruntled Sony employee.

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Finish Law Enforcement Questions Teen About Xbox Live And PSN Cyber Attacks

January 2, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

The Finnish National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has questioned a teenager in connection with Lizard Squad and its international hacking antics, according to Polygon. The law enforcement agency is looking into a 17-year-old identified only as "Ryan" for his alleged participation in DDoS attacks against PlayStation Network and Xbox Live, according to the report. There's some conflicting reports on whether the teen is still in police custody or if he was questioned and sent home.

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Sony Offers Five Free Days of PlayStation Plus for PSN Christmas Outages

January 2, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Recently Sony said it was sorry for the Christmas outages of the PlayStation Network (which hacker group Lizard Squad claimed credit for) and offered a gift to PlayStation Network users: five free days of PlayStation Plus and 10 percent discount off a total cart purchase in the PlayStation Store. To say the response to this gift was tepid and even hostile in some circles is an understatement.

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FBI Briefed On Other Sony Pictures Hack Theory: 'It Was An Inside Job'

December 30, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

While the FBI continues to stick by its statement earlier this month that North Korea or hackers associated with the country hacked Sony Pictures, Politico reports that the top law enforcement agency in the country is - at the very least - entertaining other theories.

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FBI Investigating Christmas Day Attacks on PSN, Xbox Live

December 29, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

According to Daily Dot, the FBI is investigating the Christmas day outages on both PlayStation Network and Xbox Live that left many new PS4 and Xbox One owners unable to play their games on the holiday. The hacker group known as Lizard Squad claimed responsibility for the Christmas day attacks.

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Get Double XP in 'Diablo III' For The Holidays

December 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

In the spirit of the holidays, Blizzard is giving back this weekend with more than the usual amount of experience points in its popular (but always online) game Diablo III. Launched on Christmas, and running until midnight on December 29, anyone who plays logs into and plays Diablo III will get two times the normal experience.

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How Kim Dotcom Tried To Save Christmas

December 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

TorrentFreak details at great length how Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom did his best to get hacking group Lizard Squad to stop DDoSing PlaySation Network and Xbox Live on Christmas. While it's debatable if the peace offering made by Dotcom really did stop all the Lizard Squad attacks, it shows that he at least made a strong effort to do something on behalf of gamers.

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Security Researcher Says FBI 'Probably Wrong' About Sony Pictures Hackers

December 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

A security researcher says that the FBI's December 19 proclamation that agents from or related to North Korea hacked Sony Pictures is probably not true. Marc Rogers, the director of security operations for DEF CON and a security researcher for a mobile security company says that the hack is more likely the work of a disgruntled former or currently employee.

Here's some of what he wrote in The Daily Beast:

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Hackers Ruin Christmas for Xbox and PlayStation Users

December 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Over the Christmas holiday hacking group Lizard Squad claimed credit for taking both Xbox Live and PlayStation Network offline, much to the consternation of Xbox One and PS4 owners - particularly those who got one of the newer consoles for Christmas. Both networks were the targets of a concentrated series of DDoS attacks on Christmas, making it difficult to log in to either service all Christmas day.

Both Microsoft and Sony acknowledged that their services were experiencing downtime after angry users took to social media to complain to and at both companies.

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'The Interview' Available on YouTube, Xbox Consoles, and Google Play

December 24, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Sony Pictures will release the controversial comedy "The Interview" on YouTube's movies service, and Xbox platforms, according to The Washington Post. The film is already available for on demand viewing ($5) or as an HD download ($15) through Google Play.

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CISA Supporters Use Sony Pictures Security Breach To Push Bill

December 19, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

We knew it wouldn't be long before some politicians and bureaucrats took the opportunity to use Sony Pictures' recent security breach as a way to push questionable cybersecurity legislation. The White House declared the Sony security breach a "national security issue" yesterday and today the FBI claimed that North Korea was directly involved in the hack.

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Andrew EisenAnd again, you keep saying "accountable." What exactly does that mean? How is Gamasutra not accounting for the editorial it published?07/28/2015 - 11:47pm
Andrew EisenMatt - I disagree with your 9:12 and 9:16 comment. There are myriad ways to address content you don't like. And they're far easier to execute in the online space.07/28/2015 - 11:47pm
Andrew EisenMatt - Banning in the legal sense? Not that I'm aware but there have certainly been groups of gamers who have worked towards getting content they don't like removed.07/28/2015 - 11:45pm
DanJAlexander's editorial was and continues to be grossly misrepresented by her opponents. And if you don't like a site, you stop reading it - same as not watching a tv show. They get your first click, but not your second.07/28/2015 - 11:40pm
TechnogeekYes, because actively trying to convince advertisers to influence the editorial content of media is a perfectly acceptable thing to do, especially for a movement that's ostensibly about journalistic ethics.07/28/2015 - 11:02pm
Mattsworknameanother07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
Mattsworknameyou HAVE TO click on it. So they get the click revenue weather you like what it says or not. as such, the targeting of advertisers most likely seemed like a good course of action to those who wanted to hold those media groups accountable for one reason07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
MattsworknameBut, when you look at online media, it's completely different, with far more options, but far few ways to address issues that the consumers may have. In tv, you don't like what they show, you don't watch. But in order to see if you like something online07/28/2015 - 9:12pm
MattsworknameIn tv, and radio, ratings are how it works. your ratings determine how well you do and how much money you an charge.07/28/2015 - 9:02pm
Mattsworknameexpect to do so without someone wanting to hold you to task for it07/28/2015 - 9:00pm
MattsworknameMecha: I don't think anyone was asking for Editoral changes, what they wanted was to show those media groups that if they were gonna bash there own audiance, the audiance was not gonna take it sitting down. you can write what you want, but you can't07/28/2015 - 8:56pm
MattsworknameAndrew, Im asking as a practical question, Have gamers, as a group, ever asked for a game, or other item, to be banned. Im trying to see if theres any cases anyone else remembers cause I cant find or remember any.07/28/2015 - 8:55pm
Andrew EisenAs mentioned, Gamasutra isn't a gaming site, it's a game industry site. I don't feel it's changed its focus at all. Also, I don't get the sense that the majority of the people who took issue with that one opinion piece were regular readers anyway.07/28/2015 - 8:43pm
MattsworknameDitto kotaku, Gawker, VOX, Polygon, ETC07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
MechaTama31So, between pulling a game from one chain of stores, and forcing editorial changes to a media source, only one of them strikes you as being on the edge of censorship, and it's the game one?07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
Andrew EisenHave gamers ever tried to ban a product? Can you be more specific? I'm not clear what you're getting at.07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
Mattsworknamethey should have expected some kind of blow back. But I didn't participate in that specific action07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
MattsworknameAndrew Youd have to ask others about that, I actualyl didn't have much beef with them till last year, so I can't speak to there history. I simply feel that gamesutra chose politics over gaming and chose to make enimies of it's prime audiance. For that,07/28/2015 - 8:40pm
Andrew EisenI'm still not clear on how Gamasutra was lacking in accountability or what it was lacking in accountability for.07/28/2015 - 8:38pm
MattsworknameAndrew: You and I agree on most of that. I don't diagree that there should ahve been other actions taken. Now, I do want to point something out, casue Im not sure if it's happened. Have gamers ever tried to have a product banned?07/28/2015 - 8:37pm
 

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