Microsoft has moved to clarify that the security of Xbox Live has not been compromised, after hacking group LulzSec published what appear to be personal details and password data from users.
According to CBC, 'Lulz Security' claims that it has released log-in information for 62,000 private internet accounts Thursday, including Facebook, PayPal, dating sites, Xbox Live and Twitter.
Despite initial panic over the gaming-related section of the information echoing Anonymous' attack on PlayStation Network - after which Sony took its online service down for almost four weeks - Microsoft has dismissed the worries. It said in a subsequent statement:
"This group appears to have posted a list of thousands of potential email addresses and passwords, and encouraged users to try them across various online sites like Xbox Live in the event one of the users happens to use the same password and email address combination. At this time we do not have any evidence Xbox Live has been compromised. However we take the security of our service seriously and work on an ongoing basis to improve it against evolving threats."
The list is reportedly made up of data from mostly US accounts but includes hundreds of Canadians, as well as citizens from the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and Brazil.
CBC says that some of the names include journalists and government employees, including provincial public servants in Alberta, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island and at least one municipal worker in Whitehorse.
LulzSec said on its Twitter account that it uploaded the file containing all the information to a file-sharing site Thursday morning. The site took it down, but it was uploaded again on Thursday evening, before being taken down once more. LulzSec reported thousands of downloads before it was removed.
Bragging phrases on the hacking group's Twitter include the line: "Envelope yourself in the sickening realization that you secretly love f--king someone's Facebook life beyond repair."