Twitch Faces Likely Hack—Millions of Gamer Accounts Affected?

Twitch, the massively popular video gameplay-streaming behemoth, has likely been hacked.

The site, which Amazon picked up last year for a cool $970 million, sees a lot of traffic. And we mean a lot of traffic. As of last summer (at the time of the Amazon buy), there were 1 million people streaming their gameplay live via the platform to millions of spectators. Viewers are watching for entertainment, are looking to pick up tricks and tips for their own gaming efforts, or are supporting their friends, favorite pro players, game publishers and developers.

In all, about 100 million Twitch users view more than 15 billion minutes of live content per month.

Now, the site has sent a warning to account holders noting that passwords (which are encrypted), email addresses, user names, home addresses, phone numbers and dates of birth may have been accessed. Twitch also said in a short statement that it canceled user passwords and stream keys as a precaution, and said that it is disconnecting accounts from Twitter and YouTube. Users are also urged to change passwords on other sites where they may have used similar passwords.

For now, additional details are scant. But security expert Jonathan Sander, strategy and research officer with STEALTHbits, said that an attack was somewhat inevitable.

“Bad guys know gamers spend money online, and so it makes perfect sense for them to  [go] after the world’s largest concentration of gamers,” he noted in an email. “Twitch is a treasure trove of valuable user data.”

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