Earlier this week many noticed that the Steam forums were experiencing issues and were later taken down. It turns out that the damage incurred by hackers was more widespread than was originally anticipated.
At first it seemed like just the forums were defaced and as such were quickly out of commission but as Valve investigated, it turned out that a database full of user names, passwords and other information was hacked. As such, the items contained on this database could now be making its way over the usual underground channels.
According to Valve credit card information should still be safe but they are not ruling out the possibility that it too was hacked.
We’ll continue monitoring the situation but until then, below is the full email from Gabe Newell to Steam members.
EDIT: To avoid confusion, please remember that hashed + salted passwords as stated below are not the actual passwords themselves but rather encrypted versions thereof. This certainly doesn’t mean they are secure but rather, the people in possession of this information may find it very hard to access the things they need to get into the physical accounts.
Dear Steam Users and Steam Forum Users,
Our Steam forums were defaced on the evening of Sunday, November 6. We began investigating and found that the intrusion goes beyond the Steam forums.
We learned that intruders obtained access to a Steam database in addition to the forums. This database contained information including user names, hashed and salted passwords, game purchases, email addresses, billing addresses and encrypted credit card information. We do not have evidence that encrypted credit card numbers or personally identifying information were taken by the intruders, or that the protection on credit card numbers or passwords was cracked. We are still investigating.
We don’t have evidence of credit card misuse at this time. Nonetheless you should watch your credit card activity and statements closely.
While we only know of a few forum accounts that have been compromised, all forum users will be required to change their passwords the next time they login. If you have used your Steam forum password on other accounts you should change those passwords as well.
We do not know of any compromised Steam accounts, so we are not planning to force a change of Steam account passwords (which are separate from forum passwords). However, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to change that as well, especially if it is the same as your Steam forum account password.
We will reopen the forums as soon as we can.
I am truly sorry this happened, and I apologize for the inconvenience.