‘Cities: Skylines’ developer releases statement on malware risk

Colossal Order asks players to report any "concerning mods, reuploads of banned mods, or mods containing the same/similar code"

Colossal Order has released a statement outlining what happened with several Cities: Skylines mods that were banned from Steam Workshop, after a potential malware risk was identified last week.

Last Friday (February 11), NME reported that a disgruntled Cities: Skylines modder had bundled several of his mods with malicious code, and an automatic updater that allowed him to bypass Steam Workshop rules.

Now, Cities: Skylines developer Colossal Order has released a statement confirming that two of the mods in question – Update from Github and Network Extensions 3 – have been banned.

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The developer also confirmed that Network Extensions 3 “blocked a short list of Steam users from using the mod, but this was later changed to cause what appeared to be buggy gameplay.”

Cities: Skylines
Cities: Skylines. Credit: Colossal Order.

The creator of these mods, who went by the usernames Chaos and Holy Water, used malicious code that targeted specific players and made the game run poorly if other mods were installed. This was supposedly so that Chaos could drive more players to download “fixed” versions of these mods that he was offering.

“Blocking users or creating specific restrictions for them violates the Steam Subscriber Agreement and as such resulted in the mod being banned,” explained Colossal Order.

Colossal Order added that “no keyloggers, viruses, bitcoin mining software, or similar has been found in mods on the Steam Workshop,” however it’s worth noting that the Update from Github mod was in itself malware, as it allowed Chaos to implement any content he wished to users’ PCs. According to the statement, the studio only identified around 50 users who were affected by the Update from Github mod.

For the future, Colossal Order has advised players to report any “concerning mods, reuploads of banned mods, or mods containing the same/similar code”.

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In other news, Ubisoft is hiring for a new Might And Magic game. The studio says the new title will “reinvent” the franchise.

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