Last week our MMO business roundup report included word that there was some illicit trading going on between players and EA employees in FIFA 21. Since then, the game has put out a recent update with word that ongoing investigations may have revealed it could be more than just one bad actor.
“It appears that one or more EA accounts, which were either compromised or being used inappropriately by someone within EA, directly entitled items to […] individual accounts. Our initial investigation shows questionable activity involving a very small number of accounts and items. Although it is not a large number, if these allegations prove out, this activity is unacceptable.”
At the heart of the scandal is an abuse of FIFA 21’s content granting system, which is normally used for customer service purposes or on a discretionary basis like granting items to pro footballers, celebrity partners, or even EA employees. According to the post, this practice is perfectly normal and otherwise doesn’t affect FIFA 21’s ecosystem, as the sum of these granted items is less than 0.0006% of the total player items in the game.
Investigations are still ongoing, and the post does state that actions will be taken against any EA employees involved in the matter and any players that benefited from the scheme. In the meantime, there will be no content granting of any kind until investigations complete.