EA denies Origin spies on Battlefield 3 PC players

Written by Joe Martin

November 2, 2011 // 10:30 a.m.

Tags: #battlefield-3 #bf3 #ea-denies-origin-spies-on-battlefield-3-pc-players #electronic-arts #origin #origin-spying #privacy-law #steam

Electronic Arts has denied accusations from German gamers that download service Origin breaks privacy laws and spies on the activity of Battlefield 3 gamers.

EA's Origin is required to play Battlefield 3 on PC and German gamers were provoked into outrage after images appeared online which indicated that Origin was accessing external programs and data synced from mobile phones.

German newspaper The Spiegel also posted a list of items from Origin's license agreement, highlighting areas it believed violated German privacy law. These clauses included EA reserving the right to access data from other EA products without notifying the user, as well as the right for EA 'and partners' to "gather, use, store and transmit technical" on "IP addresses, usage data, software, equipment, software usage and existing hardware peripherals" for "marketing purposes".

German gamers responded by giving negative Amazon reviews to Battlefield 3 on PC and returning shop-bought copies to stores, says Eurogamer.

EA has updated the Origin EULA in response to the outcry and issued a statement to address concerns.

'We have updated the End User License Agreement of Origin, in the interests of our players to create more clarity,' says EA Germany. 'Origin is not spyware. Neither do we use nor install spyware on the PCs of users.'

'We do not have access to information such as pictures, documents or personal data, which have nothing to do with the execution of the Origin program on the system of the player, neither will they be collected by us.'

Origin's license agreement matches 'industry-standard privacy policies...[but] where necessary, we will of course work together with the relevant Government agencies to ensure that our policies are and remain legally compliant.'

Read our Battlefield 3 review for more information on the game, then let us know your thoughts in the forums.

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