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EA’s Origin Game Store Players at Risk of Hack

March 19, 2013

By Cynthia Herbert :: 9:45 AM

EA's store could become hacker target.The hits just keep on coming this month for Electronic Arts (EA). First the miserable launch of the SimCity game, which needs to be tethered to servers on the back-end to function properly, and now, news that EA’s online game store, Origin, is at risk for a hack attack that swaps out good game code for malicious code.

The Origin store acts as an online distribution system, where users can buy, download and manage their EA  games as well as use forums and chat rooms to interact with other fans and players.

Researchers at a an online security company were able to exploit a loophole in the way that the online store provides links to games that users have downloaded and installed on their own machines. The loophole allows for hackers to enable the downloaded game to run code that compromises users machines.

However, there is no evidence yet that the loophole has yet been exploited by hackers. EA is said to be looking into the issue with Origin.

“An attacker can craft a malicious internet link to execute malicious code remotely on victim’s system, which has Origin installed,”  the researchers in a paper that outlined their work.

For the hack attack to be successful, attackers must first need to have some identifying information about their target player account to fully exploit the vulnerability. This was not difficult, claimed the researchers, because Origin does not prevent repeated attempts to guess login or password information.