The Friday the 13th videogame is living up to its legacy, not by stabbing people in the face with a fish, but instead by infecting curious internet-goers’ computers with bloody murder. Mostly malware though. Actually entirely malware. And it’s not officially Friday the 13th or it’s developers. Look, I wanted to make the dumb jokes, okay?

A website is claiming to be an official site for the Friday the 13th game, and is giving out keys for a Friday the 13th beta. In reality, the site is only dumping viruses and other nasties on the computers of anyone who tries to opt in. According to the update on the Kickstarter page, even so much as visiting the web page triggered a download of some nasty virus, hence why it wasn’t named or linked.

fridaythe13th1Since the site wasn’t named nor a screenshot presented, it’s hard to say how authentic the site looks, but that’s of a secondary concern. This isn’t the first time someone has falsely used a Kickstarted game to scam people, it’s not even the worst example.

A year ago tomorrow, the account of HandyMan Studios, developers of Edge of Space, got hacked. Whoever took control of the account sent out mass emails to backers asking for credit card information. Apparently the emails looked fake and not many fell for it, but its hard to say how many – if any – did.

Most notably, Kickstarter itself was hacked in 2014. Usernames, passwords, addresses, email addresses and phone numbers were all compromised. Luckily no credit card info was stolen, but Kickstarter CEO Yancey Strickler encouraged people to change their passwords and issued an apology.

fridaythe13th6As for Gun Media, this was and is out of their control. Unlike those previous cases, their account wasn’t hacked, it’s someone with their own website. That only makes this case so much more difficult to defend against, as anyone who doesn’t follow the Kickstarter likely won’t get the news, and Gun Media can’t just take the site down. Luckily they have the Friday the 13th license, so at the very least they could issue a copyright claim against the site or whatever.

I’m not a legal expert, if you couldn’t tell.

Maybe the biggest takeaway from all this is that it hasn’t happened all too often. Gun Media points out similar incidents happening with GTAV and Call of Duty 47, but that it hasn’t happened much with Kickstarter is particularly shocking. The (mostly) little indie projects that thrive online and with dedicated fan bases would seemingly make them an easy target for scammers, cretins, villains, and Donald Trump.

For now, let’s be thankful that hasn’t happened, and spread this news as much as we can. Preferably this very article.

About the Author

Josh Griffiths

Josh Griffiths is a writer and amateur historian. He has a passion for 3D platformers, narrative-driven games, and books. Josh is also Cliqist’s video producer. He’s currently working on his first novel, and will be doing so on and off for the next decade.

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