Nintendo Switch data leak exposes 160,000 users by impersonating NNID

Nintendo Switch and Switch Lite
Nintendo Switch and Switch Lite (Image credit: Rebecca Spear / iMore)

What you need to know

  • 160,000 Nintendo Accounts were accessed by hackers impersonating the Nintendo Network ID (NNID).
  • Because of this, Nintendo will no longer allow people to log in using NNID.
  • Affected users will be notified by email and their Nintendo passwords reset.
  • Nintendo recommends users set up two-step verification on their Nintendo accounts.

This morning, Nintendo reported that the Nintendo Network ID (NNID) was impersonated by hackers to access 160,000 Nintendo accounts since the beginning of April. NNIDs were mainly used for the Wii U and 3DS handheld gaming systems. This data leak exposed some users' date of birth, email addresses, country, and nicknames.

Nintendo warns that if you used the same password for NNID and your Nintendo account that your registered credit card or PayPal information may have been used to make purchases on My Nintendo Store or the Nintendo eShop. In some cases, it's also possible that this breach allowed the hackers to buy Fortnite VBucks or make other in-game purchases.

Due to this breach, Nintendo has "abolished the function of logging in to a Nintendo account via NNID." The Japanese gaming company states that affected users will receive an email notifying them of the breach and instructing them to reset their passwords. Nintendo further urges users to set up two-factor authentication for their Nintendo accounts to better protect their personal information from hackers.

Rebecca Spear
Gaming Editor

Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.