CD Projekt Red’s pandemic experience wasn’t very good for them. This week, things got even worse in some way for the Polish game publisher.
The company was speciously hacked and massive sensitive data were stolen. This after a catastrophic release of the continuously delayed Cyberpunk 2077 earlier. Hacked date include the source code for games like Cyberpunk and its far more fruitful franchise, The Witcher.
Hackers used ransomware to crack CD Projekt servers as Ars Technica explained. They took sensitive data, then offered it back to the company with the threat that if they didn’t pay up, they’d auction it off on the dark web.
And that’s exactly what happened after the company refused to pay.
Ransomware and other malware attack tracker VX Underground noted on Wednesday that the ransomed source code had been dispatched on a dark Web forum known as EXPLOIT. The starting bid was reportedly $1 million, with a $500,000 bidding increment. It also had a $7 million “buy it now” price.
Cyber intelligence firm KELA confirmed the validity of that auction, saying that forum users needed to put up 0.1 BTC ($4,700 as of this writing) to participate in the bidding as a sign that offers were legitimate. The sellers also reportedly provided file listings for Gwent and the Red Engine that underlies CDPR’s games as proof that the data was authentic.
Initial leaks of the data appear to be the Witcher-adjacent card game, Gwent. But as the auction continued other leaks appeared to be verified as coming from CD Projekt and containing information about The Witcher and Cyberpunk. And as of Thursday, the auction of the data appears to have been completed.
It kind of sounds like something that would happen in Cyberpunk, honestly, though there are some potential real-life consequences here. And CD Projekt acknowledged a security breach earlier in the week, so something did happen here that they say authorities are looking into.
It’s more bad news in what’s been a troublesome few months for the publisher. One that, depending on who now owns their data, may get even worse.