Club Nintendo and Ubisoft Security Breaches are the New Reality for Gamers

In this edition of “Hope You Don’t Value Your Privacy Too Much” news, both Nintendo and Ubisoft have confirmed that one of their associated sites were hacked this past week. Oh, and your personal information might have been compromised. Oops!┬áThe good news is neither of these sites stored credit card information, so at least this time the companies aren’t jeopardizing your bank accounts. That’s basically a PR win these days.

For Nintendo, Club Nintendo in Japan was hacked, something they realized when a large number of errors began popping up around July 2. Nintendo is reporting 23,000 unauthorized log-ins between June 9 and July 4, and it is unlikely that this was just jealous Americans trying to get a peak at what awesome Platinum rewards Club Nintendo members in Japan would be receiving this year. Because of the sort of information the site saves, it is entirely possible that this means that members names, addresses, and phone numbers were compromised during this time period. Fortunately for the rest of the world, it seems this problem is currently limited to only the Japanese site so everyone else’s account information should be safe. This totally makes up for the fact that Club Nintendo in Japan gives its members life sized gold plated Mario statues while the American members get a button or an official Nintendo rock.

Ubisoft suffered a similar problem this week and was much more egalitarian about the bad news, allowing it to affect everyone equally. Thanks, Ubisoft! About time I was able to get in on the fun. Anyone who had one of those awful Uplay accounts got a nice email from the company, asking you about your day and oh, by the way, we might have given your passwords away. Like Nintendo, no credit card information was stolen, but one of their websites was illegally accessed and it is possible that “user names, email addresses, and encrypted passwords” were compromised. They suggested everyone change their password, and here are a couple of suggestions if you were affected by this security breach: stopgivingmyinformationawayplease84!, UPLAYSUCKS0!, or password.

Unfortunately, this sort of thing seems to be the new reality for gamers, with many gaming programs requiring some personal information in order to access them. These sites and services tend to make nice juicy targets for hackers, and the ubiquitous nature of these things means most serious gamers probably have their personal information stored in at a least a couple of different gaming company’s sites. Since so many of these companies require personal information in order to makes an account, it falls to them to keep our information safe and secure if we are going to keep trusting them with it. Unfortunately, even the most secure of sites can be hacked if people are dedicated enough, but it would be nice if I could go at least a couple of weeks without having to change a password.