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Phishing fears raised after security breach at UK Nintendo site

15 June 2011 - 13:45 by Paul Tissington

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There are concerns that cybercriminals could use information gleaned during a recent hack of console maker Nintendo's UK website, to launch a series of phishing campaigns which aim to dupe consumers into parting with private data and cash.

Nintendo.co.uk and a selection of other sites operated by the firm in European countries were apparently hit by hackers this week and various warnings were posted to alert users to the attacks.

Following the breaches Nintendo took action to ensure that further details were not compromised, shutting down services to protect those who want to carry out safe shopping online via its various retail channels.

Nintendo said that it does not hold onto payment card information or land addresses for any of its users so it does not believe that hackers could gain direct access to financial details. However, phishing sites could be set up to target users via their email accounts with spam campaigns, as it is thought that email addresses were taken.

Observers have pointed out that Nintendo is acting swiftly to alert consumers to the issues and tackle the hacking related threats, in stark contrast with the week's delay which separated recent attacks against Sony services and the company's admission of the events.

A whole raft of virtual attacks have been levelled against various large corporations in the world of gaming, leaving many consumers uncertain about which business is actually able to assure them that safe shopping online is possible in a threat-free environment.

One point of view is that hacks such as this are fairly regular but that the attention drawn by the high profile Sony case has actually revealed the wider ongoing trend, rather than kick started a new era of constant cyber attacks which could damage consumer confidence.