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Hackers leak millions of PlaySpan accounts

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World of Tanks (Credit: Wargaming)

Add PlaySpan to the ever-growing list of video game companies that have been targeted by hackers.

Online thieves and mischief-makers have reportedly released details for two million accounts online, with players of World of Tanks seemingly most at risk.

"When PlaySpan detected the breach, we immediately shut down the hacker's access to our systems and took steps to protect our customers' PlaySpan accounts," the company told Develop. "We then commenced a comprehensive forensic analysis and are working with law enforcement to investigate the crime. As a precaution, we have already locked all user accounts and closed the PlaySpan Marketplace site."

PlaySpan's Marketplace is used to facilitate micro-transactions for more than 1,000 games, further raising concerns about the breach. While initial reports indicated players of RuneScape and EVE Online were affected, those proved to be inaccurate.

PlaySpan, which is owned by Visa, noted that no credit or debit card information appears to have been stolen, though users are being required to update their passwords.

PlaySpan is also disputing the number, telling The Verge that while it has over 2 milion registered customers, only 117,000 of those are currently active. Given people's habit of using the same password at multiple sites, though, it's best to take some pre-emptive steps if you've had an account there.

Hackers have aggressively been targeting video game companies since the high-profile breach of Sony's PlayStation Network last year.

That comes as hacking, in general, is on the rise. In 2011, 174 million personal records were stolen, with more than half of those being lifted by members of Anonymous, LulzSec and its various subsets. All totaled, there were 855 "incidents" reported, according to Verizon's annual Data Breach Investigations Report.

Among the other studios that have suffered breaches are Blizzard, Bethesda Softworks and Nexon.

PlaySpan quickly apologized to its customers for the incident.

"We sincerely apologize for any frustration or inconvenience this incident has caused our customers," it said in a statement. "We know PlaySpan's business depends on consumer trust. Security is a top priority for us, and we are redoubling our efforts to strengthen PlaySpan's overall system security."

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