Microsoft issues phishing alert for Xbox Live

Tech giant offers security warning to Modern Warfare 2 gamers; Infinity Ward says patch inbound.

For the past week, Sony's PlayStation Network has been offline with no timetable as to when it will return. An external attack has compromised users' personal information and has left more than 75 million users unable to connect. Now, Microsoft is experiencing its own online problems.

Modern Warfare 2 is suffering phishing attacks, it seems.

While the problem is not as wide-ranging as Sony's takedown, Microsoft today issued a Service Alert for Xbox Live to warn users of a security risk. The alert states that matchmaking has been affected by a phishing attempt inside Infinity Ward's shooter Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

"Users may receive potential phishing attempts via title specific messaging while playing Modern Warfare 2," reads the message posted on the Xbox Support website.

GameSpot connected to Xbox Live and played matchmade games of Modern Warfare 2 and did not experience any phishing attempts. There were also no warnings placed in-game about the issues, which are being widely reported via social networking sites.

Responding to questions regarding the issue via Twitter, Infinity Ward creative strategist Robert Bowling said, "We have a patch in the process of testing for release that should be out soon to address."

Additionally, Microsoft offered its own note concerning the issue.

"We are aware of the problem and are working to resolve the issue," reads the note. "We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for your patience."

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Discussion

365 comments
TigerRifle1
TigerRifle1

So they'll stop phishing attempts but do nothing about people who already cheat and hack.

lilflex1
lilflex1

i was playing not to long ago and someone had some jump ability on good thing was it was activated for everyone

Phatjam98
Phatjam98

LOL ok this is nothing like what happened with PSN. This is a group that are trying to get personal info and probably credit card info from dumb kids that want instant 10th prestige or some other silly thing. Phishing is way different from what happened with PSN. Here is a hint.... dont cheat, dont respond to cheaters and use some common sense and you wont be a victim.

gho5ty
gho5ty

its cheaters not hackers if one person makes a program and others download its cheating not hacking.hackers are low key and stay out of sight wile crackers make programs for things too be unlocked for free.and thus makeing the point why sony is nothing but crap when they stated we have a unhack able system

MuddVader
MuddVader

@MOwens9512 "That's like paying the guy dating the girl of your dreams to sleep with her while you watch just to show how little he respects her LOL" Ouch . . . I think I just felt my soul crack a little imagining that.

Skirikidik
Skirikidik

@a3aantjeh Say what? Your gonna have to explain yourself more...

MOwens9512
MOwens9512

Never understood how people feel the need to corrupt every walk of life LOL I mean video games are suppose to be a nice form of entertainment and an outlet for life's pressures. Sucks that people are trying to turn it into the internet, constantly throwing around viruses and scams. @deedaw your comment makes no sense by the way. How much sense would it make for a so called PS3 fanboy to go out, buy an XBox360 and subscribe for an XBox Live account just to spam MW2 players? LOL That's like paying the guy dating the girl of your dreams to sleep with her while you watch just to show how little he respects her LOL

ctseaman
ctseaman

Ever gotten a message offering instant 10th prestige playing MW2? PHISHING ATTEMPT

godzillavskong
godzillavskong

I'm too impatient to go phishing, plus I never catch anything!

deedaw
deedaw

fanboys trying to take the heat off of their beloved PSN

lilflex1
lilflex1

i play modern warfare off and on but havent for awhile but the only xbox related problems i found was their website not loading

Dareitus
Dareitus

Phishing is hardly a hacking attempt. Phishing is when someone poses as another entity and an attempt to gather information from an unknowing party. This has been going on with Xbox and PS3 for years, people send you a message claiming to have Free MS Points or Access To A New Beta! and all you have to do is tell them where you live and what your credit card number is! If you fall for a phisher you probably deserve it.

akiwak
akiwak

Nobody is hacker proof! But by taking precautionary steps one can prevent severe losses...

xxKai
xxKai

I see it now, the hackers play the Wii and started getting pissed off at all the hatin and now they're hackin the other two big home consoles to convert us all to wii users!!! jk :P I do think Xbox is doing a great job acting on it right away, but on one hand this just might be because of Sony's recent issue, and also the hacking thing has been goin on for ages in Mw2 so then again they're probably way late on this one

nini200
nini200

@TheTrainer1980 I do agree with you though that if you're dumb enough to fall for "GET FREE MICROSOFT POINTS, ALL WE NEED IS YOUR SSID and Tax ID NUMBER" then you deserve to be Phished.

GamerLegend10
GamerLegend10

lol mw2 is full of hackers, though recently there have been a number of times when messages will appear on the left of the screen saying stuff like "You have been infected by *gamertag* *and then a web address*" but i think thats just hackers messing around. but yeah mw2 is a bit of a joke now, people just do what they want, hacking and modding everything: from dong 10th lobbies, changing names, placing messages on screens, speed lobbies, jump lobbies, changing the physical look of the maps etc. such a hack fest

nini200
nini200

@TheTrainer1980 Um no, Phishing is a form of Spyware. Spyware is any type of program created to steal information from an unsuspecting victim. Spyware is what, you ask, A type of VIRUS.

a3aantjeh
a3aantjeh

I have read about this in the newspapers aswell... those hackers have warned sony before by a lighter more subtel attack on their servers... now they take it further, but they will not target the users of xboxlive... or something like that anyway

Marky360
Marky360

@ACx7 Doesn't seem that big a difference to me if the outcome is the same. with control of your account a hacker could obtain all the same personal info on you as if he had just breach the security of the entire network.

PalZer0
PalZer0

How are they doing this? I wasn't aware that MW2 used messaging specific to that game.

Sirbobislost
Sirbobislost

@monson21502 An anti pirate system first and console second? What kind of pointless and stupid fan boy comment is that? Anyway your wrong all 3 are money making machines first and game consoles second

Vodoo
Vodoo

Maybe these network issues is a sign that kids should put down the controller and get outside more often.

hahamanin
hahamanin

well xbox live aint going down soon...

monson21502
monson21502

@Justp94, nah.. hackers wont target 360. its all about sony for them. sony is the one that built the ps3 as anti pirate system first and a game systems second... not ms or nintendo. this is why they are getting attacked....

dre256x
dre256x

People Still Play Modern Warfare 2... Its has been a hack fest since day one..

Philly04
Philly04

And they're just announcing this!! I agree with SierraScorpion

CaptainHerlock
CaptainHerlock

So where are all of you saying "Microsoft are so screwed"? What? Nobody wants to sue?

Hansathan
Hansathan

@TheTrainer1980 Do it man! People are so shady online. I ignore 99% of the messages I get.

bub166
bub166

@Philly1UPer That was troll bait, sir. At the least, I know it worked as well as I had intended!

zinoalex
zinoalex

I'm not so sure it was a hacker. But rather a number of crackers. There used to be a difference. Crackers have much more malicious intents than hackers at leadst to my understanding.But I do see a domino effect here with XBLA prob. being the next target. The events of the last week were so uncalled for.

Starbound571
Starbound571

@GodGundamNT1: As I stated before, the numbers I had posted were merely intended as fictional examples, the true numbers could be way off and that's not taking into account that there are way more operating systems out there (Some custom built for special purposes.) than the big three. I apologize if my example offended you, it was not intended. @ZombiePhoenix72: Phishing is the act of obtaining sensitive or sometimes personal information for the intent of running a scam. Usually phishing is done by malicious groups claiming to be a reputable entity. On the internet, e-mail spam is perhaps the most common form, (A good example of this is a bank asking you to "update your account information" and having you click on a link in an email, but this ends up bringing you to a look-alike site where, if you put in this information, it will instead steal it to be used for malicious purposes.) but phishing takes all forms, including the type seen in this incident on CoD. The basic idea is it's unscrupulous people looking to pose as someone else to fool the uneducated into giving out sensitive information. Thinking about it now looking back at this article, perhaps the problem isn't as bad as they're making it out to be - I've talked to a few friends over Xbox Live who play CoD and they say they have not seen anything like this. It may be an isolated thing, which is probably why, as the article says, there are no in-game warnings about it.

Justp94
Justp94

It's GUARANTEED that Xbox Live is the Hackers next target. Unless the FBI catches this hacker soon, all online gaming with actual good video games is screwed :(...

taino1128
taino1128

@Starbound571 That is a really good point. It is the most popular game on consoles. People constantly bash it and talk about how much they hate it, yet they play it everyday. The problem on the PSN started with CoD, and even though Infinity Ward patched it, it then expanded throughout the entire network. Hopefully the same won't happen on Xbox Live, especially since Xbox gamers need to pay for their service. I honestly don't get the point of hacking. They are hurting others for no good reason and for an unjust cause.

GodGundamNT1
GodGundamNT1

@Starbound571 actually Linux is actually at .95%, thats LESS THAN ONE PERCENT bub. Already earlier this year legit websites posted the Operating System market share pie charts. Microsoft was actually at 89.67%

Starbound571
Starbound571

@taino1128: Call of duty seems to be a popular target because of that very fact - that it is indeed a very popular game and very widely played, no matter what iteration it is. I hope nobody's going to completely chew me out for this, but it is kind of the truth when I say it. To use a better example, Windows, Mac OS, and Linux computer operating systems. Of the three, Windows is the most widely used. Now, these aren't real numbers, but let's say you were a virus writer. The world's computers are running these operating systems: Windows: 85% Mac OS: 5% Linux: 5% Other: 5% With these imaginary numbers in mind, if you were a virus writer, and you wanted to "carpet bomb" a lot of people with your virus, who is probably going to be the most logical target of these numbers? Windows, simply because of it's popularity and consistency across computers. That's NOT to say people with malicious intent WON'T attack vulnerabilities elsewhere, but you can affect a larger group if you single out a high profile target. Same thing with games. Call of duty is pretty consistently played by a LOT of people out there, (At least when I look of people's profiles on Xbox Live.) so they're hoping they'll get a good number of people before they've caught on. Sticking to the topic on hand however - I can't help but feel that since the news about PSN's breach got out, that now scam artists are trying to see if people on other services are going to be an easy score. Hopefully they won't get anything.

GodGundamNT1
GodGundamNT1

Microsoft to the hackers: "hey guys hack our servers too so that people don't we paid you guys to ruin Sony" Hackers: (take broom stick like object out of their mouths) "Yes master, right away master, anything you say master"

soulless4now
soulless4now

Security issues will always been the downfall of technology. That's the sad part.

X-RS
X-RS

man, you guys should come to expect this jack. video games are a huge industry and cheaters are everywhere. mainly, id argue do to dlc/online transactions. kinda makes you miss the old days...

eyebrowless
eyebrowless

COD is the target because it's the game with the most online users Also, I'll bet M$ knew about this for a while and since all the stuff with PSN is going down, they figured they'd slip this in now before it gets thrown in their faces

MrGreenBeanz
MrGreenBeanz

This is not NEARLY as bad as the PSN issue.

snuff_prelude
snuff_prelude

@Jack00 - why would Microsoft help, and for that matter how much help would they be its not like they know sony online systems and how they are set up. And besides its not like MS is pointing and laughing at sony they are probably concerned about it happening to them so they are working on that. Welcome to global corporations, they help themselves because thats what they are supposed to do.

taino1128
taino1128

Why the hell is Call of duty always the target?

DifferenceEngin
DifferenceEngin

I don't see how it's a problem as long as you're not a mouth-breathing moron and don't give out your personal info which Infinity Ward nor MS would ask for...

casual48
casual48

was'nt that long ago that hackers were seen as some kind of anti-establishment hero's .. well that's come back to bite everyone on the ass has'nt it

berzerk0912
berzerk0912

@howie1926---------------------Because I can do that. Anymore dumb questions?

Aaron__1127
Aaron__1127

@vegna871 the game didn't even sell 30-million copies and alot of ppl that brought this game have moved on to other games, like black-ops.

Vegna871
Vegna871

While they are right that it's not QUITE as widespread as the PSN bits (and not as serious) there are still at least 30million people still playing modern Warfare 2 on the 360. not exactly a small problem.