Atomic Heart developer denies claims that it's harvesting data for Russian authorities

Atomic Heart
(Image credit: Mundfish)

Atomic Heart developer Mundfish has denied claims that it's collecting user data and providing it to Russian state authorities.

Earlier in the week, a fairly explosive report from AIN.Capital surfaced alleging Mundfish's Russian store website included a clause informing users that their data may be collected and sent to Russian state authorities including the tax office and the Federal Security Service (FSB), a Russian federal body with broad authority to implement government policy on national defense and counterterrorism. 

AIN also claims Mundfish's website policy cited "Russian mobilization laws, under which soldiers are currently being recruited in Russia to continue the criminal war against Ukraine." Furthermore, AIN alleged Atomic Heart itself is being "sponsored by Russian investors" and that Mundfish listed its legal address as being in Moscow.

In a statement to GamesRadar+, Mundfish refuted claims of data harvesting on the grounds that the privacy statement cited in AIN's report is "outdated and wrong."

"Our game and website DO NOT collect any information or data," a spokesperson for Mundfish said. "The website's privacy statement is outdated and wrong, and should have been removed years ago. We have shut down the shop to assure our fans of the integrity of our studio and products. We apologize for any confusion on this matter."

Mundfish has not confirmed or denied claims that its website had once asked users to agree to data collecting, that its privacy policy made mention of Russian authorities, or that it has an office in Moscow.

Earlier this month, the Atomic Heart developer was criticized for its statement on Russia's ongoing invasion of Ukraine. The statement conspicuously doesn't mention the Russo-Ukrainian War specifically, but instead condemns "offensive, hateful, discriminatory, violent, or threatening language or content" and describes Mundfish as "a pro-peace organization against violence against people."

It's worth noting that Atomic Heart, which is Mundfish's debut title, stars a KGB agent in an alternate future in which the Soviet Union mastered robotics to defeat Nazi Germany and put an end to World War 2. Central to the recent controversy around Mundfish is whether or not the studio has accepted funds from Russian authorities in developing Atomic Heart. The studio's statement today makes no mention of that matter, but the topic is undoubtedly heavy on the minds of many who have been anticipating the game.

According to its website, Mundfish is a Cyprus-based "international team" of developers from "countries including Poland, Ukraine, Austria, Georgia, Israel, Armenia, UAE, Serbia, and Cyprus."

Atomic Heart is due to release on February 21.

Jordan Gerblick

After scoring a degree in English from ASU, I worked as a copy editor while freelancing for places like SFX Magazine, Screen Rant, Game Revolution, and MMORPG on the side. Now, as GamesRadar's west coast Staff Writer, I'm responsible for managing the site's western regional executive branch, AKA my apartment, and writing about whatever horror game I'm too afraid to finish.