Update: Steam is now back online. No explanation from Valve has been given just yet.
Yes, you read right. The world’s biggest PC game digital distribution platform, Steam is down during the Steam Winter Sale 2016. No reason has been given by Valve for this at the moment. However hacker group Phantom Squad — which claimed responsibility for last year’s Xbox Live and PlayStation Network outage, has stated it has brought Steam down.
“Hey @steam_games have we destroyed your servers? Even when our attacks stop looks like it’s going to be down for awhile,” the group’s account tweeted. Its now suspended. Possibly due to the number of irate Twitter users reporting it, fed up from facing the same trauma after last year’s downtime during the busiest period — Christmas.
(Also see: Don’t Know What to Buy During the Steam Winter Sale 2016? Read This)
In 2015, users reported that on logging in, they could see credit card and address information of other users rather than their own. Valve issued a vague, late statement citing a "caching issue" that did little to inspire confidence.
After nearly a week, the company finally explained what happened. It admitted what consumers on Reddit and other forums reported, that they were able to see the personal information of other users. Valve also said that around 34,000 users were affected.
(Also see: Steam Winter Sale 2016: Date, Time, Discounts, How to Buy, and More)
"On December 25th, a configuration error resulted in some users seeing Steam Store pages generated for other users. Between 11:50 PST and 13:20 PST store page requests for about 34k users, which contained sensitive personal information, may have been returned and seen by other users," a post on Valve's site read at the time. Three months later it issued an apology to users for the data leak caused by this.