Twitch, a popular streaming media platform owned by Amazon, is responding to unprecedented hacking of its website. On the morning of October 6, an anonymous 4chan user released a 235 GB Torrent file containing Twitch source code, creator income details, and other confidential information.
The leak does not seem to include the personal information of Twitch anchors and viewers, such as user IDs or passwords; much of the public content is concentrated on Twitch internal documents. Twitch said it is still working to understand the scale of the stolen content, and the company will update the anchor and Twitch community members with more information when it becomes available. This is what we know now.
What was stolen in the Twitch vulnerability?
The leaked information shared on Wednesday included three years of creator income and expenditure starting in 2019. The data has been collated online, including the top 10,000 anchors. Some anchors on social media and elsewhere have confirmed that these numbers match their internal Twitch analysis, but some have stated that their numbers have been closed.
The hackers also stated that they have access to “traceable [Twitch.tv’s] “Early start”, which means that you can save a “snapshot” of each iteration of Twitch, dating back to its creation. The source code of Twitch’s mobile, desktop, and console clients is also available online, “and the proprietary SDK used by Twitch “Code related to internal AWS services” is the same, According to The Verge. Other Twitch attribute data, such as the video game database IGBD and the mod management system CurseForge, were also leaked along with security tools and files related to the Steam competitor codename Vapor, which is said to be under development, and was designed by Amazon Game Studios.
According to Vice, The information shared in the leak is not particularly “sensitive”, at least for Twitch; the shared information is more harmful to the anchor itself.
As reported by The Verge, the information released on Wednesday was marked as “Part One”, which means that more hacked data may be available. Twitch has not yet commented on the stolen data.
So, should I change my password?
The short answer is yes, you should change your password, even if there is little evidence that personal Twitch account information (except the creator’s income) has been leaked. Twitch hackers may have more information, but it may include personal information, including passwords and other sensitive data.
Twitch did not address user security issues, although some Twitch users who logged on to the streaming platform on Wednesday reported that they were asked to change their passwords. If you have not enabled two-factor authentication, it is usually recommended that you enable it-this step will make it more difficult for others to gain unauthorized access to your account, thereby protecting any information in it.
Why do people care about the income of creators?
Twitch anchors who make money on the platform are largely confidential about how much money they make. This is because anyone who signs a contract with Twitch is Reportedly prohibited from sharing the dataIt’s no secret that Twitch anchors make money through subscriptions, donations, advertising, and exclusive contracts.Curious party were able Just add up the number of subscribers to a person’s anchor income in the field: subscriptions start at $4.99, and revenue is evenly split with Twitch. Most anchors get a 50% discount on the subscription price, but Twitch does allow some anchors to negotiate different splits.
But this list of creator income is significant because this type of data has never been discovered on this scale before. In addition, the information here shows a huge difference between Twitch’s top anchors and tens of thousands of anchors who have difficulty finding viewers. This violation also sparked a discussion about Twitch’s donation structure, which encourages viewers to “reward” anchors beyond their monthly subscriptions.
However, it is not entirely clear what these figures contain. Washington post A report on Wednesday said that the leaked revenue data appeared to be “revenue earned from advertising, subscriptions and other features”-ignoring any brand transactions, YouTube revenue, merchandise or donations made outside of Twitch. The figures listed appear to be total untaxed income since 2019.
The top channels listed as part of these earnings documents are key players, Dungeons and Dragons Role-playing channel, where professional voice actors play roles.it is from Overwatch Voice actor Matthew Mercer.According to these leaked documents, the second highest paid is Félix “xQc” Lengyel, a controversial Canadian anchor and ex Overwatch Pros. These documents show that since 2019, a total of 81 anchors have earned more than $1 million in revenue from Twitch, and the top 10 Twitch earners have earned a total of at least $49,993,651 in these three years.
According to unconfirmed documents, the earnings report also highlighted differences in Twitch’s gender pay gap. Most of the anchors in the top 100 are men; only three creators are women-only one of them is a woman of color. Kotaku reported on Wednesday.
How did the anchor react?
Naturally, Twitch hack is a major topic of Twitch itself.Many top anchors choose to discuss streaming payments throughout the day, and many of them make fun of the money rankings: for example, political commentator and anchor Hasan “HasanAbi” Piker calls his anchor “the 13th richest on earth “Anchor”,” commented on his position on the income list to more than 44,000 viewers. Imane “Pokimane” Anys broadcasted live to more than 20,000 viewers and named her live broadcast in a similar way: “#39 Register” and Joking on twitter That “At least one can’t exaggerate me too much.’I make millions of dollars from my audience every month.'”
She continues“I limited my donation a year ago because I have not yet reached the point where sponsors, investments and exclusive contracts can sustain me. Obviously, subscription + streaming advertising is the lowest part of my income, and I hope you continue Put this money in your pocket.”
An anonymous leaker posted the hacked information in a 4chan post, calling Twitch’s community “a sickening toxic sewage pool” and stated that the leak was aimed at “inducing more destruction and competition in the field of online video streaming.” The leaker closed the message with a tag, #TwitchDoBetter, Referring to the social media campaign that began in August, aimed at highlighting the harassment faced by black ribbons on the platform.
Some anchors used the hashtag #TwitchDoBetter to express their dissatisfaction with the leaker. This label was created in August in response to the increase in “hate attacks” on the platform. Hate attackers abuse Twitch’s attack feature—which allows anchors to move their viewers to another stream—and send large numbers of toxic viewers or bots to marginalized anchors, especially black anchors, queer anchors, female anchors, and Colored anchors. Since then, Twitch has sued two people suspected of leading the hate attack. In late September, Twitch announced new features created to curb website harassment, including a feature that requires Twitch viewers to verify phone numbers before using the chat feature.
To say that there is a rift between the Twitch anchor and the company is an understatement. The anchor was frustrated by the company’s lack of responsibility and security—especially its lack of protection for marginalized anchors—and Wednesday’s hacking attack only exacerbated the existing frustration.