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Epic game store is epic at spying on you

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#26
I sent a request to Epic Support for any and all data they've collected on me - which from my understanding of the GDPR, they are legally obligated to provide. We'll see what they respond with, I guess. Considering that the only thing I've ever used the launcher for is installing Fortnite thinking I might try it out one day, they really shouldn't have much.
Can you post it here verbatim? :D

I think this is the worst myth. That people are powerless. They aren't.
Truthfully, you don't have a lot of say about it here in the US. The best thing you can do is not use their services but that doesn't even really gain you anything. We may as well be lumped in with China thanks to the Patriot Act. The only difference is that we let you browse that stuff and follow you while you do it.

Apologies for the derail.

EDIT:

I am tempted to install it and log my traffic with Wireshark to see what they are doing with it. At least you could setup some outbound firewall rules to block traffic that is detected to be likely related to Epic.
 
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#27
I don't mean to single you out but Epic was questionable as a service when they paid Deep Silver to make Exodus a timed exclusive on the Epic store. There are plenty of people, myself included, who are waiting until it comes to Steam.
Really? That's all that took? You do know that's been common practice between consoles since forever right? And how is it Epic's fault? 4A Games are the ones that agreed to it. If I offered you 90% instead of Steam's 70%, of the total price of the game if you sell your game only in my store "Gasaraki's Games R Us", you could tell me to go fu** myself OR agree and start pulling your game with the other stores. Why is it wrong for me to offer you that deal if it's win win for "everyone"(producer and seller)?
 
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#28
I closed all of my online accounts except Steam(Yes GOG too...). I'm reassessing if I want to do business with each and every company that I've dealt with in the past and most of them aren't going to make the cut. The only power we have is to vote with our wallets. These companies don't listen, nor do they care about anything else. Especially morals...from my perspective.

I have a long list of companies I won't do business with under any circumstances. You should too. Start reading those EULA's they're shoving in your face. They're not shy about restricting your rights...you should be aware of it.

Closed my account at GOG? It was a personal choice involving promises made to linux users that weren't kept. When it changes...I told them I'd be back. They we're cordial enough...but not as cordial as you might think. They told me outright....they we're going to hold onto information from my account if they had to defend themselves in the future. A bunch a nice guys....:).

Best Regards,

Liquid Cool
 
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#29
4A Games are the ones that agreed to it.
Not really, it was Deep Silver.

Closed my account at GOG? It was a personal choice involving promises made to linux users that weren't kept. When it changes...I told them I'd be back. They we're cordial enough...but not as cordial as you might think. They told me outright....they we're going to hold onto information from my account if they had to defend themselves in the future. A bunch a nice guys....:).
What do you expect? Of course they are going to hold on to your data. Especially your financials as they are required for X years by law.
 
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#30
Really? That's all that took? You do know that's been common practice between consoles since forever right? And how is it Epic's fault? 4A Games are the ones that agreed to it. If I offered you 90% instead of Steam's 70%, of the total price of the game if you sell your game only in my store "Gasaraki's Games R Us", you could tell me to go fu** myself OR agree and start pulling your game with the other stores. Why is it wrong for me to offer you that deal if it's win win for "everyone"(producer and seller)?
4A Games had no say in the matter. Deep Silver and Koch Media made that decision. The game sat as a pre-order on Steam for a year and received the attention and exposure that Steam offers and at the last minute Deep Silver pulled it from Steam.
 
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#31
Tell me one thing I can do then, boycott Epic game launcher?
Yes.
The EULA is exactly what give someone the right to spy on people like this. I bet the permission is buried in there, or it should be. Don't like being spied on? Then don't agree to the EULA.
Why do you bother responding like this? You've heard of the concept of statutory rights, correct? Rights to confidentiality/privacy can not be contractually waived.
There are plenty of people, myself included, who are waiting until it comes to Steam.
I'm waiting for the GOG release.
Closed my account at GOG? It was a personal choice involving promises made to linux users that weren't kept. When it changes...I told them I'd be back.
While I feel your pain, the Linux equation isn't in their hands entirely. That was a silly choice and a bit short-sighted. Kinda like cutting off your nose to spite your face.
 

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#32
Why do you bother responding like this? You've heard of the concept of statutory rights, correct? Rights to confidentiality/privacy can not be contractually waived.
And that statutory right is not what we are talking about here. The statutory right to privacy only applies for them spying on you without your consent. I'll give you examples:

Scenario A: Someone sets up a hidden camera in my house and uses it to record me and shares the video with others without my knowledge in any way. This violates my statutory right to privacy and is illegal.

Scenario B: Someone approaches me and offers to pay me $1,000 a day, but in exchange they are going to set up a camera in my house and use it to record me and will share the video with others. Because I have the option to either agree or not this is not a violation of the statutory right to privacy. If I agree, I still have not waived my right to privacy, because I am still allowed to determine what is private. If I agree, anything the camera records is no longer considered private, but anything the camera doesn't record is still private. They can't come in later and put in a second camera recording a different angle without my approval. If I disagree, anything that goes on in my house remains completely private. I am allowed to make this choice.

Scenario B is what we are talking about with Epic. As long as they have buried the permission to collect the data in the EULA that the user agrees to, this is completely legal. The user agreeing to the EULA allows Epic to spy on the user, and likely gives Epic permission to share the collected data with others. It is also what makes this not a statutory rights issue, because at the end of the day, the choice to allow the spying is made by the user.

So, I'll say it again, if you don't like to be spied on, don't agree to the EULA. You won't get to use their software, but the choice is yours, and that is the important difference that determines if this is a violation of a person's statutory rights or not. So the EULA is what allows them to spy on you.

Now, we can make the argument that it is extremely scummy to hide permission to spy on you in an EULA/ToS. I'd agree that it's a scummy thing to do in a heartbeat. It also might be the case that Epic didn't actually put the permission in their EULA/ToS, in which case they are definitely in the wrong, and I'd agree with that. However, the idea that spying like this is never allowed and an EULA can't be used to allow it, is completely wrong.
 
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#33
That people are powerless. They aren't.
Well, go on, tell us what can we do. Outside simply not using the service of course.
 
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#34
I sent a request to Epic Support for any and all data they've collected on me - which from my understanding of the GDPR, they are legally obligated to provide. We'll see what they respond with, I guess. Considering that the only thing I've ever used the launcher for is installing Fortnite thinking I might try it out one day, they really shouldn't have much.
Probably will call your bluff and give you a pre-recorded answer under the assumption you are a part of the majority, aka, can't afford corporate lawyers to represent you to prove them wrong. I commend you for trying though, but I gave up many years ago. lol
 

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#35
Firstly, it is clear the client is listing all of the processes running on the system. As seen below


As well as following up with trying to access .dll files of other programs.

Computer is infected. I started ProcessMon, I set a filter to include EpicGamesLauncher.exe, I started EGS, I let it get all of the way to usable, I closed the window, and then I closed it in the system tray. I then did a search for "fiddler" and...
fiddler.png



What's more worrying is that the user goes on to show that the client likes accessing your root certs on the PC.
Insignificant. EGS has to pass through UAC before it can even launch which means security certificates are involved. Then it's a signed executable so Windows has to authenticate that signature. Once the app is launched, it undeniably uses HTTPS to sign in which involves more certificates. On top of that, it probably uses certificates and encryption to enforce licensing on games.

As well as all things Internet related, including Cookies, Keys and other aspects.
EGS is clearly designed around a webkit browser not unlike Steam uses Chromium. When the webkit initializes, it checks for cookies which may contain settings relevant to the browser and the specific user. Not extraordinary.


As well as a hardware survey, like Steams, without asking your prior permission to do so
Most applications these days need to know hardware capabilities before attempting to initialize something that requires it. On that note, it didn't actually run when I started it:
survey.png

But it appears that it did run 8 days ago.
hardware.png

Do I care? Not particularly. Developers need to know what hardware they should target. It's not like bank info or something truly sensitive.


However, none of this is not as bad as the final, Despite users not wishing to link their Epic games account with their steam account or their friends list, and without any permission or notification Epic Games launcher is taking a copy of your steam localconfig.vdf. a file containing your entire steam data, Friends list, Games owned, playtime history.

Epic Games have confirmed that it is in fact true, with Tim Sweeney stating Epic "ought to only access the localconfig.vdf file after the user chooses to import Steam friends" .

With Epics links to Chinese company Tencent, it really does make you wonder what they're compiling all this data for and if it isn't getting passed on to other parties.
The bulk of what EGS does, in fact, is scan Steam's entire userdata directory and it seems to glance in every folder...repeatedly...for some weird reason. After about the fourth time, it does read the whole localconfig.vdf file but it does not copy it. It closes the file, then immediately queries the metadata from its own games, in my case: EdithFinch, ThimbleweedPark, JackboxPartyPack1, AxiomVerge and it does this twice. Then it goes back to the registry looking for more steam installs (via more registry keys) to scan...it repeats this whole process three times in my case probably because of Public, Admin, and limited user accounts. Seems like poorly written code that doesn't really do anything. Immeidately after looking at Steam userdata, it starts doing a lot of webwork likely initializing the UI. Once it is done with that, it enumerates all of the running processes (not sure why...could be looking for games currently running like EGS crashed and restarted). Then it goes back to web caching.

All told, I really see nothing of particular concern.


Going to run Wireshark next. In particular, I'm wondering why EGS keeps tapping 230.0.0.1:6666...

Edit: Has something to do with IGMP (multicasting) on a 240.#.#.# IP. Multicast cuts down on bandwidth consumption but why they are joining a multicast group, I'm not sure. Not particularly concerned about it because there's multiple legitimate uses for it (e.g. how it is downloading the video playing on the store page).
 
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#36
I don't mean to single you out but Epic was questionable as a service when they paid Deep Silver to make Exodus a timed exclusive on the Epic store. There are plenty of people, myself included, who are waiting until it comes to Steam.
Oh; and I'm not waiting one year to play one of my most highly anticipated games, because of this. Yes, it's bad and all, but as I have said, and no one has provided me with a course of action; there is nothing I can do about it. So why even worry? As far as I'm concerned, if they're not going to turn up at my door and try to kill me, I don't give a damn.

I'm sorry that's the way I think, but I don't think I can worry about something else on top of what I already do each day. My original post was just me trying to be at comfort with that fact. ~shrug~
 
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#37
Oh; and I'm not waiting one year to play one of my most highly anticipated games, because of this.
Hold that thought...
here is nothing I can do about it.
Sure there is, you do what you just said you don't want too, wait mate.
As far as I'm concerned, if they're not going to turn up at my door and try to kill me, I don't give a damn.
You'll be thinking that up until the time someone steals your identity, ruins your credit rating, makes it tough to get a decent job and you have to spend money as well as years worth of time sorting that mess out. You'll take your privacy more seriously after that, I guarantee it. But hey, carry on with your impulse gaming and continue not to care about anything..
 
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#38
wireshark it!!! pm me their IP addresses so I can firewall that crap.
 
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#39
You'll be thinking that up until the time someone steals your identity, ruins your credit rating, makes it tough to get a decent job and you have to spend money as well as years worth of time sorting that mess out. You'll take your privacy more seriously after that, I guarantee it. But hey, carry on with your impulse gaming and continue not to care about anything..
That's extremely unfair. A company like Epic Games is not going to steal my identity. There is nothing on my PC that identifies me. I do not store my data unencrypted. I'm sorry but my identity is not going to be stolen because I installed the Epic Games Launcher. I take my privacy seriously, I don't leave my curtains open when I'm getting dressed, thanks.

Why should I have to wait a year for steam when Steam arguably does all of the above, too? Don't jump from EGS -> "Oh noes, I lost my identity and credit rating and can't get a decent job and have to spend years fixing it" please. it's quite a jump. Oh, and waiting one year for Steam version of Exodus won't fix anything.

Anyway, enjoy your fallacy of privacy, I'll be enjoying Metro Exodus. Great game, btw. Well worth it :)
 
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#40
A company like Epic Games is not going to steal my identity.
No, you're right. Honestly, you probably have a better chance of your data getting popped from Spectre style attacks at a datacenter then you do from anything Epic is going to do.

If someone is worried about Epic, you may as well shitcan all your smart devices (phones, tvs, tablets, dvd players, Alexas, Nests, toasters, fridges, etc).
 
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#41
That's extremely unfair. A company like Epic Games is not going to steal my identity.
No but their employees might. And if they get hacked and have a data breach? What then?
There is nothing on my PC that identifies me. I do not store my data unencrypted.
Not everyone does that. Most people have a fair amount of usable data on their PC's.
Anyway, enjoy your fallacy of privacy, I'll be enjoying Metro Exodus. Great game, btw. Well worth it :)
Typical passive-aggressive response. Nice.
 

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#42
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#43
No but their employees might. And if they get hacked and have a data breach? What then?
Lol, go ahead and phone up all the companies that have data on you and ask them to delete all the data. You're singling out Epic Games because you probably have some kind of issue with them? Idk.

Delete all the game clients, delete all the software; don't use Windows 10. Actually, while you're at it; unplug your PC from the internet. :)

Sorry about the final remark, but I'm just a bit annoyed that you're accusing me of all these things when all I wanna do is play Metro Exodus.

Next time I won't bother even posting here
 
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#44
Well, go on, tell us what can we do. Outside simply not using the service of course.
You could always wait for Cracked copy to come out on some pirate site somewhere on the www
 

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#45
Hold that thought...

Sure there is, you do what you just said you don't want too, wait mate.

You'll be thinking that up until the time someone steals your identity, ruins your credit rating, makes it tough to get a decent job and you have to spend money as well as years worth of time sorting that mess out. You'll take your privacy more seriously after that, I guarantee it. But hey, carry on with your impulse gaming and continue not to care about anything..
This is where common sense comes into play. I understand privacy concerns, but that pretty much goes flying out the window once you connect to the Internet. As far as having your identity stolen etc, that's where you make decisions about where you shop. Newegg, for example, is a place I deem trustworthy to shop at. Epic is... slightly less so, but to be fair, you can do far worse. It also helps to use PayPal wherever possible, instead of dumping your raw CC (or even bank info) on a site for making purchases.
 

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#46
the guy that initially posted this by his own admission had no fking idea what half of it was for
 

hat

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#47
the guy that initially posted this by his own admission had no fking idea what half of it was for
As shown by our own @FordGT90Concept ...

I mean, I get it, the Epic store is new and all, and with ties to Tencent... but it doesn't quite seem like they're sending cyber ninjas to hijack your computer.
 

newtekie1

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#48
Computer is infected. I started ProcessMon, I set a filter to include EpicGamesLauncher.exe, I started EGS, I let it get all of the way to usable, I closed the window, and then I closed it in the system tray. I then did a search for "fiddler" and...
From what I can tell, Fiddler is not a program started by EGS, it is a program the person already has running on their system and EGS is trying to access that program for some reason.
 

FordGT90Concept

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#49
It might be this, a web debugging proxy and it hooked EGS because EGS has a webkit browser in it.

There's absolutely no evidence EGS invokes "fiddler" intentionally under normal circumstances. That folder won't even exist on most systems.
 

OneMoar

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#50
there is no evidence of anything here other then of some kid the barely knows how to use a debugger and claims to be a expert
 
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