The developer of Among Us, a social intuition murder mystery game that’s fast become one of the most popular multiplayer titles of the year, is currently battling against a particularly pernicious spam attack. The spam is promoting a mysterious online handle, “Eris Loris,” and it became bad enough that Among Us studio InnerSloth had to perform emergency maintenance starting late last night.
Hacking and other forms of cheating in Among Us has grown considerably since the game emerged as a popular online pastime during the pandemic this past summer, according to a report from Kotaku. And Among Us has only grabbed more of the spotlight just these past few days, following a hugely successful Twitch stream from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) alongside high-profile streamers to encourage voting in the upcoming US election.
Yet it was only just yesterday players started experiencing the “Eris Loris” spam in their online matches. Developer InnerSloth said on Thursday it was “super duper aware of the current hacking issue” and it would be pushing out an emergency server update to try to address it.
We’re are super duper aware of the current hacking issue and we’re looking into it. We will be pushing out an emergency server update so people who are in game will get kicked from games. Please play private games or with people that you trust!!! Bare with us!!
— InnerSloth (@InnerslothDevs) October 23, 2020
The spam attack began some time on Thursday when players discovered their in-game chat logs filling up with messages promoting Loris’ YouTube channel, with some messages threatening users with hacking of their personal devices if they didn’t subscribe. Other messages promoted both the YouTube channel and President Donald Trump.
A Eurogamer report published today features an interview with the supposed creator of the spam attack on Discord. The hacker claims to have recruited dozens of others to participate by contributing servers, although it’s unclear exactly how the hackers are managing to spam so many matches at once.
The end goal, it appears, is to promote the Eris Loris YouTube channel, which advertises hacks and other game cheating services. The spam attack may have hit as many as 1.5 million games, affecting close to 5 million players if the hackers’ claims are to be believed. Loris is also a self-described Trump supporter, the report says.
Whatever is actually happening here, Among Us players are undoubtedly being bombarded with some type of highly coordinated attack that’s compromising the game in serious ways. According to InnerSloth developer Forest Willard, the emergency server update began rolling out some time in the middle of the night, affecting in-progress games and resulting in potential false positives. But it’s unclear if the issue has since been resolved or whether InnerSloth is planning future maintenance to address it. Players on Twitter continue to report Eris Loris-related spam in the game.
So yeah. I’m rolling out the server update. I’m using a faster method than I’ve done before, but it’ll impact players more. Trying to be careful, but also, you might get booted. It’s for the greater good at this point. Consider it an “emergency maintenance for ??? hours”
— Forest (@forte_bass) October 23, 2020