Steam’s 35 Million Users’ Info Hacked, Calls For NetApp Probe Investigation, Amazon Buys Siri-like Yap

Breaking news from your editors at Fast Company, with updates all day.

Steam User Info Compromised. Valve is the latest game company to have its users’ information accessed by hackers. In an IM to Steam users, Valve said, “Our Steam forums were defaced on the evening of Sunday, November 6. We learned that intruders obtained access to a Steam database in addition to the forums. This database contained information including user names, hashed and salted passwords, game purchases, email addresses, billing addresses and encrypted credit card information.” The company went on to say, “We don’t have evidence of credit card misuse at this time. Nonetheless you should watch your credit card activity and statements closely.” Steam has 35 million users who purchase digital copies of PC games. —KO


–Updated 5:50 p.m. EST

China Telecom Wireless Headed To The U.S. Starting in 2012, China Telecom will be expanding its wireless service to the U.S., where it will begin selling independently. Donald Tan, president of China Telecom Americas, told Bloomberg that the company’s target audience will be people who travel between China and the U.S. frequently, who will have access to two lines, one for each country. —NS

Capitol Hill Calls For NetApp Syrian Software Investigation. Sens. Mark Kirk (R – Illinois) and Robert Casey (D – Pennsylvania) are demanding that the State and Commerce Departments investigate American software firms NetApp and Blue Coat Systems for selling surveillanceware to the Syrian government that was used in this year’s bloodshed. Kirk and Casey allege that the software sale broke U.S. sanctions, putting NetApp at risk of losing a number of lucrative government contracts. —NU

–Updated 11:45 a.m. EST

WoW Loses 1 Million Subscribers. In the last three months, World of Warcraft has lost a million people. WoW had its record number of subscribers in 2010, with 12 million people playing the massive multiplayer game. Since then, numbers have been dropping, the BBC reports–most recently falling from 11.1 million at the end of June to 10.3 million subscribers at the end of September. —NS

Toyota And Intel Team Up For Car Tech. Intel and Toyota are joining forces to reconfigure in-car entertainment and communication. The goal is to allow people to interact with their car using touch gestures and voice controls, and be able to connect their mobile devices to the system. The system will be powered by Intel’s Atom processors, The Verge reports. —NS


Amazon Buys Siri-like Yap. Amazon has bought Yap and its voice recognition tech, AllThingsD has confirmed. The 50-member company is based in Charlotte, NC, but was bought by Amazon on September 8, reports have found. Sprint used the company’s tech to transcribe voicemails, but Yap’s service has stopped as of October 20. It sounds like voice recognition will be fresh warring turf between Apple and Amazon. —NS

Alaska Airlines Starts Burning Biofuel On Commercial Flights. Alaska Airlines has begun testing biofuels on two legs: flights from Seattle, WA, to Portland, OR, and Washington D.C. The flights run a 20 percent blend of biofuel made from cooking oil. Also taking to biofuels in earnest, on Monday, United Airlines began using Solazyme’s algae-based biofuel on commercial flights from Houston to Chicago. —NS

Walmart Launches Mobile Apps, Stores. Taking mobile and online retail by the horns, Walmart has released an iPad and iPhone app, and set up two mobile stalls in malls in California. The apps are built by WalmartLabs, the Valley startup Walmart bought in April 2011. Among other features, the iPhone app will have a voice-sensitive shopping list creator and can display in-store locations of items in certain Walmart stores in the U.S. —NS

–Updated 6:00 a.m. EST

[Image: Flickr user thomasy7]


Yesterday’s Fast Feed:Microsoft, AOL, Yahoo Band Together For Ads, Facebook’s Biggest User Will Soon Be India, Adobe Dumps Flash On Mobile