Houseparty are offering $1 million bounty for proof of who started hacking rumours
31 March 2020, 12:05 | Updated: 31 March 2020, 17:06
Houseparty creators Epic Games have denied the app has been hacked.
Houseparty is offering a $1,000,000 reward to anyone that can provide evidence that the company was the victim of a harmful smear campaign following rumours that the app had been hacked.
Houseparty, which allows users to play virtual games with friends and have group video chats, has been a godsend to all trying to stay in touch with their pals during the coronavirus pandemic.
Unsurprisingly, Houseparty (which launched in 2016) became one of the most downloaded apps in several countries, with Apptopia reporting that app downloads rose from an average of 130,000 a week mid-February to 2 million a week in the middle of March.
Everybody DELETE #houseparty!! It’s hacked into my snapchat and messaged numerous lasses asking to get their tits out and show where they piss from. It is not me.— Louie (@Loui3x) March 30, 2020
Hahah right just seen that Houseparty can hack your phone so tried to delete my account and thought this was weird af pic.twitter.com/v4o2TFG9E8— leah (@leahgardinerxxx) March 30, 2020
However on Monday (Mar 30), rumours that Houseparty was the reason other apps were being hacked started swirling around social media. Several Twitter users alleged apps like Netflix, Spotify and even bank accounts had been compromised since they had downloaded Houseparty. Many then called for their friends to delete the app, however, there were then claims that Houseparty were making it difficult to delete the app.
Epic Games, who owns Houseparty and popular game Fortnite, issued a statement denying there was a problem with Houseparty. "We’ve found no evidence to suggest a link between Houseparty and the compromises of other unrelated accounts," an Epic Games spokesperson told The Sun. "As a general rule, we suggest all users choose strong passwords when creating online accounts on any platform.
"Use a unique password for each account, and use a password generator or password manager to keep track of passwords, rather than using passwords that are short and simple."
Since downloading HOUSEPARTY, both mine and Jess’s Instagrams have had suspicious hacking activity. A buddy has also had their bank account hacked.— Kevin Pietersen🦏 (@KP24) March 31, 2020
Coincidence or not, I’ve DELETED it!
Not taking any risks! Goodbye!
Delete that Houseparty app please. A friend's bank account nearly got hacked.— Gabbbar (@GabbbarSingh) March 31, 2020
Houseparty have now said they will be offering a reward to anyone that can provide intel on how the rumours started.
"We are investigating indications that the recent hacking rumors were spread by a paid commercial smear campaign to harm Houseparty," a tweet from the official account read. "We are offering a $1,000,000 bounty for the first individual to provide proof of such a campaign to email@example.com."
We are investigating indications that the recent hacking rumors were spread by a paid commercial smear campaign to harm Houseparty. We are offering a $1,000,000 bounty for the first individual to provide proof of such a campaign to firstname.lastname@example.org.— Houseparty (@houseparty) March 31, 2020
Just in case – here's how to deactivate and delete your Houseparty account.
1) Tap the user icon in the top left corner of the screen in the Houseparty app
2) Head to Settings
3) Tap Privacy
4) Click Delete Account
5) You'll then be asked if you’re sure you want to delete your account. Tap Yes and enter your password
6) Press Delete
7) Your account should now be deleted. Remove the app from your smartphone or tablet
Brb, just getting to the bottom of this so I can collect my ransom…