Denuvo forgets to secure server, leaks years of messages from game makers

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Massive log file includes user complaints, apparently legitimate developer requests.

The developers at Denuvo have been in the news thanks to cracks against their notoriously tough digital rights management (DRM) tools, which are normally used to lock down video games from leaking online. On Sunday, the company faced a different kind of crack—not against a high-profile video game, however, but of its depository of private web-form messages. A significant number of these appear to come from game makers, with many requesting information about applying Denuvo’s DRM to upcoming games.

The first proof of this leak appears to come from imageboard site 4chan, where an anonymous user posted a link to a log file hosted at the denuvo.com domain. This 11MB file (still online as of press time) apparently contains messages submitted via Denuvo’s public contact form dating back to April 25, 2014. In fact, much of Denuvo’s web database content appears to be entirely unsecured, with root directories for “fileadmin” and “logs” sitting in the open right now.

Combing the log file brings up countless spam messages, along with complaints, confused “why won’t this game work” queries from apparent pirates, and even threats (an example: “for what you did to arkham knight I will find you and I will kill you and all of your loved ones, this I promise you CEO of this SHIT drm”). But since Denuvo’s contact page does not contain a link to a private e-mail address—only a contact form and a phone number to the company’s Austrian headquarters—the form appears to also have been used by many game developers and publishers.

The log, as hosted at Denuvo.com, contains queries with legitimate reply addresses at current game studios. Those include a requests from the following: 343 Industries, about applying Denuvo to upcoming Halo Warsgames on PC; Microsoft, in a 2015 message describing Denuvo as something that would fit with “an upcoming initiative”; TaleWorlds, about adding DRM to the sequel to its Mount & Blade franchise; Harmonix Games, about scheduling an in-person meeting at this March’s Game Developers Conference to talk DRM; Capcom, with multiple requests—one of which is described as a Windows 10 UWP release for 2016 (which could mean this past December’s Dead Rising 4, which indeed shipped on UWP with Denuvo DRM); Ninja Theory, who sent a query about DRM for its upcoming adventure game Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice; and many more.

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