June 13, 2011 at 4:36 PM ET
Game developer Bethesda Softworks has become the latest victim in an ongoing run of attacks that have left personal information exposed and in the hands of hackers.
Bethesda, which most recently released the game "Brink" but is also known for titles like "Fallout: New Vegas" and the "Elder Scrolls" series, announced on its blog Monday that it was the victim of an "unlawful intrusion of our websites" over the weekend.
Hacker group Lulz Security claimed responsibility for the attack via its Twitter account after also claiming responsibility for hacking a porn site and exposing the email addresses and passwords of more than 25,000 members.
LulzSec (also known as LulzBoat) has also recently said it broke into the websites of PBS, Sony Pictures, Nintendo and others. Meanwhile, over the last week, game companies Epic (makers of "Gears of War") and Codemasters (the folks behind "Dirt 3" and "Operation Flashpoint: Red River") also have reported that they've fallen victim to hacking intrusions.
In the case of Bethesda, LulzSec said in Twitter messages that it had broken into Bethesda's Brink website two months ago and has had information on more than 200,000 users "for weeks."
"Please fix your junk, thanks!" they tweeted.
Though Lulz then released to the public some of the info they took, they said in a statement that they would not release the private user info.
"We actually like this company and would like for them to speed up the production of Skyrim," they wrote, referring to the forthcoming highly anticipated game "The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim." "So we'll give them one less thing to worry about. You're welcome!"
Bethesda did not name the group as the culprit specifically in its blog post. Instead they said:
While no personal financial information or credit card data was obtained, the hackers may have gained access to some user names, email addresses, and/or passwords. As a precaution, we recommend that all our fans immediately change passwords on all our sites — including our community forums and the statistics site we maintain for Brink players.
Bethesda officials said they are evaluating whether there are any additional protective steps they need to take and warned their fans and followers, "If your username/email address/password is similar to what you use on other sites, we recommend changing the password at those sites as well.
"As we don’t know what further plans the hackers may have, we suggest that you keep an eye out for suspicious emails and account activity," they said.
Well, one thing's for certain: Sony is probably not feeling quite so alone any more.
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