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160,000 Nintendo game accounts may have been hacked

Nintendo users have experienced unauthorized access and purchases to their accounts. (Nintendo)
Nintendo users have experienced unauthorized access and purchases to their accounts. (Nintendo)
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25 Apr 2020 10:04:15 GMT9
25 Apr 2020 10:04:15 GMT9

Nintendo Co. said Friday that about 160,000 accounts for its home video game networking service may have been hit by unauthorized login.

Birthdays, email addresses and other information of the holders of the accounts, used for playing such game consoles as Wii U and Nintendo 3DS online, could have been viewed by the perpetrators, according to officials of the major Japanese game maker.

An in-house investigation found that unauthorized login using identification codes and passwords started around early this month, the officials said.

In addition, unauthorized login via the IDs occurred for accounts used for playing the Nintendo Switch console, possibly leading to illegal purchases of goods on Nintendo's online shopping website, they said.

The company will send email to users whose accounts were possibly compromised, asking them to set new passwords.

Nintendo has confirmed that hacks are happening and announced that the defense against the breach is for users to enable two-factor authentication.

“We are aware of reports of unauthorised access to some Nintendo Accounts and we are investigating the situation,” a Nintendo spokesperson told Eurogamer.

“In the meantime, we recommend that users enable two-step verification for their Nintendo Account as instructed here. If any users become aware of unauthorised activity, we encourage them to take the steps outlined,” the Eurogamer spokesperson added.

In order to enable two-step authentication, users should visit their profile on the site, locate the “Sign-in and security settings” section, where the “two-Step Certification settings” option is found, edit the settings, and wait for a verification code to be sent to their confirmed email addresses.

Once users enter the verification code, they can scan the barcode into the Google Authenticator app, which will then enable the feature and require anyone accessing the account from then on to also enter a code.

The increase in reports of unauthorized access of accounts coincided with an upsurge in the number of people using Nintendo's online service and games during this period, where people around the world seek refuge in online entertainment amid coronavirus lockdowns forcing people remain indoors.

*With JIJI Press

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