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Posts with tag Account-Administration

The Lawbringer: Account security and you


Pop law abounds in The Lawbringer, your weekly dose of WoW, the law, video games and the MMO genre. Running parallel to the games we love and enjoy is a world full of rules, regulations, pitfalls and traps. How about you hang out with us as we discuss some of the more esoteric aspects of the games we love to play?

New players will soon be streaming into World of Warcraft come Cataclysm time, as well as old friends and enemies returning from prolonged sojourns. With these new or old accounts becoming active again, as well as a demand for grey market services increasing with a growing player base, account security is going to be on the tip of everyone's tongue again. For good reason, too. World of Warcraft has had one of the most daunting burdens of any MMO to date in dealing with account security, account hacking and a legal nightmare overseas.

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Filed under: The Lawbringer

Blizzard policy changes in reaction to account security concerns

WoW.com has learned through sources close to the situation that after our series of posts describing some questionable internal policies at Blizzard concerning account administration and security, as well as the likely introduction of mandatory authenticators, a few of these policies have been changed this evening.

First, the abilities of billing representatives to directly roll back characters to previous states has been more or less removed, preventing the onioning exploit we spoke about earlier. Account administrators still have the ability, of course, but it should prevent people from being able to game the system over the phone. We do not know if this ability will be returned when billing representatives obtain the proper training and tools.

Second, the care package deal has been sweetened. We're not exactly sure how, only that it's been improved from what it was this morning. World of Raids was tracking the response to these stories on the Customer Service Forums and found a post by CSF blue Syndri detailing some specifics of the care page as it stood earlier today. We cannot be sure Syndri's post applies to the package now or not (given its changes), however it's probably safe to assume that it does. We have also learned that managers are being directed to ensure everyone is presented this care package as an optional alternative to full restoration, something we understand was not consistently happening before.

Syndri's enumerations after the break.

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Account Security

Account Administration encouraged not to restore hacked characters

Please see the update to this original post.

In a stunning revelation from a veteran account administrator at Blizzard, WoW.com has learned that account administrators are being encouraged by Blizzard managers not to restore people's characters and items after their account has been ransacked by gold sellers and keyloggers. Instead, account administrators are being told to give people a "care package" and get them to accept the package in lieu of total account restoration.

If the player does not accept this care package, they are then forced to go into a character restoration queue that is consistently several days to weeks long. According to sources familiar with the situation, this "care package policy" has been implemented in order to lighten the work load of those Blizzard employees who perform account restorations. Similar policies have existed at other times account compromises have been high, such as during the transition from Vanilla WoW to The Burning Crusade.

This care package being offered consists of the following:

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Account Security

Blizzard giving serious consideration to mandatory authenticators

WoW.com has learned through trusted sources close to the situation that Blizzard is giving serious consideration to making authenticators mandatory on all accounts. According to our sources, while this policy has not been implemented yet and the details are not finalized, it is a virtually forgone conclusion that it will happen.

This response is a direct effort to stop the massive number of compromised accounts by gold sellers and keyloggers. The seriousness of the situation with compromised accounts has reached such a level that wait times for item and character restoration are entirely unacceptable, even to Blizzard executives. Blizzard has taken other internal measures to deal with long wait times of people in account restoration queues, and we'll be covering those measures tomorrow.

However, with the inclusion of mandatory authenticators, this should solve a major problem for Blizzard's support and account administration teams.

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items, Account Security

Another blow in the keylogging experience


Thank you all for the encouragement I received in response to my recent keylogging experience. As a whole the experience was just dreadful. As I mentioned on last week's WoW Insider Show podcast, I am still afraid every time I log in that I will get the "The information you have entered is not valid" error. For the most part things have settled down, but the fear remains.

The worst part of the keylogging episode was that my Shaman was transferred from a PvP to PvE server. After about a week in limbo my beloved Tauren was returned to her proper place. I was extremely relieved. Unfortunately that's the only thing on my account that Blizzard was kind enough to restore. They refused to return any of my gear or gold and did nothing about the items ninjaed from the guild bank. I appealed their decision with several emails. Those appeals were ubiquitously denied despite logical arguments and heart-filled plights. I thought it was all over, for better or for worse.

I got more bad news in my email box the other day:

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Filed under: Odds and ends, Blizzard, Forums

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