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Hacker Steals Frogster User Data, Threatens To Shut Down Servers
Hacker Steals Frogster User Data, Threatens To Shut Down Servers
January 17, 2011 | By Eric Caoili

January 17, 2011 | By Eric Caoili

An anonymous attacker claims to have stolen login data for 3.5 million Frogster accounts, threatening to release that user information and shut down the game's servers unless the publisher meets certain demands.

In a now-deleted posting on Frogster's message boards, captured by gaming blog Kotaku, a user using the handle Augustus87 demands that the Berlin-based company stop closing forum threads, offer more transparency to customers, secure its game clients and user info, and cease its alleged spying of workers' online activities.

Augustus87 says if these demands are not met in two weeks, he will release information from a collection of 3.5 million accounts for Runes of Magic, Bounty Bay Online, TERA, and other free-to-play games from Frogster. Her claims 500,000 of those accounts have been "hacked and verified" so far.

The hacker has already released alleged login and password information for around 2,100 from 2007 accounts on the message board -- a post Frogster's moderators quickly deleted. The publisher says it has blocked those accounts' access to the games, account management settings, and forums for those users' protection.

Frogster says the data released so far comprises "outdated log-in data from 2007," before its "comprehensive reset initiative." The company has informed the German State Office of Criminal Investigation about the breach, and has formed a task force dedicated to learning how this incident occurred.

"We are utilizing every means at our disposal to minimise the damage and to prevent such threats in the future," explained Runes of Magic's lead community manager Mike "Silberfuchs" Kiefer in a forum post. "We have already implemented additional security measures today."

He added, "This incident is very distressing to all of us. It is targeted not only at Frogster as a company, but also at Runes of Magic as a virtual biosphere and at you as players. We are always open to constructive suggestions. However, giving your opinion on blackmail and extortion is surely not the correct approach."

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Sherman Luong
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Treat its employers better or employees?

From the looks of it this looks more of a inside job than a hacker. As two points indicated about employee work environment versus safeguarding internet issues.

Alex Matche
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After reading the "hacker"'s post from kotaku, he allegedly found some sniffing process running on the computer of all of frogster's employees, though it does seem very odd to have that as a demand.

Overall though, what strikes me the most as odd is the fact that all of his demands are things...that should be expected from companies.

Granted, transparency is a toughie, but overall his demands don't really seem unreasonable. I never played Runes of Magic or any game published by frogster, but I have only been hearing negative things from people who have.

Mike Weldon
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I played Runes of Magic for several months and found it to be an outstanding game considering that it is free to play. In fact, I would say it is the second best F2P MMORPG behind only LOTRO. There, now you've heard something positive about it.

Robert Gill
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Lol. Well, idk about this. I agree with his demands in a way, but going about and threatening to release players' info isn't the way to do it. That just hurts gamers.

I see what he's trying to do, but it's not going to work.

david vink
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Who says it's a 'he'?

Joseph Caddell
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I did mwhahahaha

Robert Gill
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Not one for sterotyping, but what do you think?

Robert Gill
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Augustus is also a male name. Unless you have an Aunt Augustus or something lol

Tawna Evans
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This story reminds me of Tron Legacy... the son of the original owner of the company hacked into the database to make the game free to the world.

I suspect that the former company heads of Frogster that got replaced after that company got aggressively taken over by another might be behind the hack.

Kelvin Bonilla
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This is some serious Hollywood S***! xD lol