Friday, March 30, 2012

Credit Card Data In Xbox 360 Hard Drives

A group at Drexel University conducting a research says that the hard drives in the Microsoft Xbox 360 video game system retain credit card data even after they have been reformatted and sold again, so is your credit card at risk?

In a response, Microsoft said they will be conducting tests on how the researchers managed to get info out, but have not yet been able to replicate what the group did. In a statement by Jim Alkove, who is the general manager of Microsoft's security of interactive entertainment business, told Joystiq

"We are conducting a thorough investigation into the researchers' claims. We have requested information that will allow us to investigate the console in question and have still not received the information needed to replicate the researchers' claims.
Xbox is not designed to store credit card data locally on the console, and as such seems unlikely credit card data was recovered by the method described. Additionally, when Microsoft refurbishes used consoles we have processes in place to wipe the local hard drives of any other user data. We can assure Xbox owners we take the privacy and security of their personal data very seriously."

Although Microsoft claims that this doesn't seem possible at all that the systems could still retain the data after being reformatted. The researchers at Drexel said that modders can pull the numbers out by just using the common hacking tools found. 

This is quite scary for many, as similar mishaps also happened to other companies as their information of customers was taken without any permission. One thing that potential console sellers should do is to just keep their system for now, until Microsoft has found a fix to this mess.