Steam Security Woes

Steam Security Woes

After taking down the Steam forums earlier in the week due to a hacking attempt, Gabe Newell of Valve today released a statement revealing that the extent of the damage may have been worse than originally thought.

The statement, reposted below, indicates that in addition to the forums, the hackers obtained access to a Steam database containing other information such as user names, e-mail addresses, purchase histories and encrypted credit card information. However, there is currently no evidence to suggest that personally identifiable information, encrypted credit card numbers or that the protection on credit card numbers or passwords was cracked. Nevertheless, Valve are advising all customers to keep an eye on their financial transactions and will require all Steam Forum accounts to change their passwords when the forums return. No evidence has yet been found of compromised accounts for Steam itself, but reminds users that it wouldn’t be a bad idea if customers did change that as well, especially if they use the same password for the Steam forums as their main Steam account passwords.

It remains to be seen what impact this will have on the service, but after a year of gaming security breaches it’s been a tough time for gamers and their information.

Dear Steam Users and Steam Forum Users,

Our Steam forums were defaced on the evening of Sunday, November 6. We began investigating and found that the intrusion goes beyond the Steam forums.

We learned that intruders obtained access to a Steam database in addition to the forums. This database contained information including user names, hashed and salted passwords, game purchases, email addresses, billing addresses and encrypted credit card information. We do not have evidence that encrypted credit card numbers or personally identifying information were taken by the intruders, or that the protection on credit card numbers or passwords was cracked. We are still investigating.

We don’t have evidence of credit card misuse at this time. Nonetheless you should watch your credit card activity and statements closely.

While we only know of a few forum accounts that have been compromised, all forum users will be required to change their passwords the next time they login. If you have used your Steam forum password on other accounts you should change those passwords as well.

We do not know of any compromised Steam accounts, so we are not planning to force a change of Steam account passwords (which are separate from forum passwords). However, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to change that as well, especially if it is the same as your Steam forum account password.

We will reopen the forums as soon as we can.

I am truly sorry this happened, and I apologize for the inconvenience.

Gabe.

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