Skip to Content

WoW Insider has the latest on the Mists of Pandaria!

Posts with tag accounts

The Lawbringer: Mailbag 3.0

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?

Since last weekend was my stepsister's bat mitzvah, I was incommunicado down in Florida celebrating with family, eating a ton of delicious food, and getting sunburned within 30 seconds of stepping into the punishing Florida sun. The emails to Lawbringer never stopped, however, and I picked my favorites to answer while lounging next to the pool, happily oblivious.

A lot of people sent me emails about the Blizzard earnings call that has been making the rounds in the gaming news cycle this week, for a few specific reasons. First, Diablo III's beta is coming between August and September, which is super exciting to me because of how much I want to be playing that game again. BlizzCon was not enough. Friends at Blizzard, send all beta invites to mat@wowinsider.com.

Second, Mike Morhaime revealed that World of Warcraft is currently boasting subscriber numbers mirroring pre-Cataclysm subscriptions. Subsequently, the internet went crazy and collectively, shall we say, made a mess in its pants about the state of WoW's prominence.

Let's mailbag.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, The Lawbringer

Blizzard announces automated account recovery form for hacked accounts


World of Warcraft accounts have been under siege for years, with hackers and gold-selling outlets stealing passwords, items and more to fill their coffers, selling that gold to unwitting buyers. Blizzard has fought back incessantly over the years to stem the tide of gold farming and account hacking, and as you can imagine, the scale at which this happens is very tasking on its customer support department.

Blizzard has just announced a new, speedier way to get help and answered about your hacked account, stolen items, authenticator issues and more! Now, under the new system, you will not have to email or call Blizzard to get these matters into its queue -- simply use the Account Recovery Form.

Read more →

Filed under: News items, Account Security

Security Warning: Phishing emails on the rise

Recently, Polar over at Securing WoW wrote about the latest phishing email being sent out by scammers. Account thieves are using the 2010 Arena Tournament as a way to lure you to their site to steal your login info. (Registration for the tournament ended on the 27th continues until June 7.) This is typical behavior by these crooks. Every time a Blizzard event is announced or even rumored, from the Cataclysm alpha to the StarCraft II beta, scammers take advantage it with legitimate looking emails. With the Cataclysm beta almost upon us, the expansion related phishing is going to get even worse.

But there are also the tried and true emails that are being sent out daily, regardless of upcoming events. They spoof their email so that it looks like it is coming from Blizzard and fill the email with legitimate links, making their info-stealing site link look real. Also, the links have misspellings which are hard to catch at a quick glance, (like "starcratf2" or "worldotwarcraft") and lead to sites that look very much like the official ones.

Blizzard has an excellent resource for protecting yourself from phishing attacks. In general, if you get an email that looks legitimate, type battle.net in your browser's address bar (spell it correctly). This will take you to the correct site for your region and there you can see the status of your account yourself. Some examples of phishing emails are after the break.

Read more →

Filed under: Account Security

Officers' Quarters: Multiple personalities


Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

Sharing accounts is an issue that I've talked about in the past (and I'm sure, in some people's opinions, beaten to death). Previously I've covered a few different situations. First there was a general question about the issue, which I answered back in 2007. Then there was an officer who shared his account with his girlfriend (which is still a terrible idea in my opinion). Finally, a guild leader's account was banned because he bought it from another player, and his guild's progression subsequently skidded to a halt. As if those examples weren't enough to convince you that account sharing can cause a lot of problems, here's another one:

Recently, my fellow guild officers and I decided to kick a member from our guild, which also caused three other members to leave. The person who we initially kicked from the guild had asked our guild leader for a BoE Epic item in the "Ask an Officer" tab of the bank. Our guild leader responded by saying he'd ask the officers about it before handing the axe out.

Not less than an hour later he asked another guild member to take it out of the guild bank for him. Being a good guild member, they asked the guild leader if it was okay. It was instantly perceived as being an attempt to ninja the item from the bank by trying to avoid the guild leader.

Read more →

Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

Hands-on with Puggable


We first heard about Vivox's Puggable service back at the Austin Game Developers Conference -- Vivox is a company that runs voice chat for online games, and Puggable is their attempt to target the WoW audience with a quick and easy way to put a group into voice chat. The site is still in a closed beta, but it's slowly opening up, and so as soon as we got a chance to jump in and test the service out, we took it.

So what's the verdict? While Puggable's basic mechanics seem to work (by following their instructions, you can get a group into voice chat), the system itself is not quite ready for prime-time. Not only does it have an installation process that most cautious WoW account holders will scoff at (you have to install an Internet Explorer or Firefox addon, and restart your browser to use the service), but the real draw of the system, being able to browse and see player information at a moment's notice, aren't all there quite yet. Read on for our experiences.

Read more →

Filed under: How-tos, Raiding, Guides

Returning to Azeroth the long way around

Ethic at Kill Ten Rats has a post up about something that a lot of you have probably been through: more and more I'm hearing about people returning to the game. I've been playing ever since I signed up a few years ago, but that's really only because I'm writing about it -- I'm pretty ADD when it comes to games, so left on my own, I probably would have walked away from WoW a long time ago. But Blizzard is really good at bringing players back by tweaking the game in exactly the way they woud like. I feel like if I had left, I would have definitely come back in for a while, if not with Burning Crusade than definitely with Wrath.

Of course, Ethic's issues aren't really with deciding to return or not: he's having more issues actually trying to get his old accounts back. There's a laundry list of rules and limits to contend with, between dealing with having or not having the expansions, the limits on the Scroll of Resurrection program and the trial accounts, and dodging all of Blizzard's various limits on how to start and use new accounts to the game. Man -- if I had left and was planning on coming back, and I read Ethic's post, I might not even bother.

But quite a few people have come back, and I'd guess that even though there are confusing things about trying to find your way back into the game, a good number of you have done it. I'd like to know, so here's a poll: how many of you have left and come back, and how many times?

Have you returned to the game?
Nope, been here since the beginning.3191 (37.5%)
Left and never looked back!302 (3.6%)
Left once, back for now.2205 (25.9%)
I've quit twice so far.1382 (16.3%)
I've quit more than twice and keep coming back for more!1424 (16.7%)

Filed under: Polls, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Blizzard, The Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King

An Authenticator in your Visa

This is only slightly WoW-related, but it's worth a mention, I think, considering that when it happens, you'll be able to tell all your friends just what these things are. Our good friend Relmstein reports that Visa is planning to put an authenticator, of all things, in their credit cards. We of course all know how the Blizzard Authenticator works: you punch a button on the Authenticator, it gives you a code, and then that code can be used to synch up with the server. The Emue Card that Visa is testing right now works the same way: you punch in a PIN, it'll give you another code to enter on an online shopping site, and thus no one who just gets your card information can actually use your card (much like right now with a Blizzard Authenticator, no one who just gets your password can actually sign in). But it's all built in to the normal credit card.

Very interesting. What Visa's doing with their credit cards might not be completely relevant to WoW, but it is relevant to note that of all of the accounts and passwords in your life that you might like to keep secure, a Blizzard account with an Authenticator attached is probably the most locked-down. Companies have started using Authenticator-like technology to have their employees log in to local networks, and obviously credit card and banking companies are testing things like this. But when it comes down to actual widespread usage, Blizzard is way ahead of the curve. Odds are that your WoW account right now is even more protected than your checking account. We'll likely be using the same authenticator system for other secure connections in the future.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Account Security

Officers' Quarters: Account sharing + officer = bad

Every Monday Scott Andrews contributes Officers' Quarters, a column about the ins and outs of guild leadership.

I've covered account sharing before. I gave some details about Blizzard's policies on it and how it could affect your guild. This week, I received an e-mail from someone who found out that an officer of the guild he was applying to shared the account with his girlfriend. He's wondering if he may have overreacted to the situation.

Hello Scott

I have a question about guild relations (both as part of leadership and as a member) with regard to people sharing account info.

I've always had a very strict stance on account sharing, driven by three concerns: it's against the ToS, it opens up guilds to things like guild bank theft, and it breaks the idea that when I whisper a character, I know who I'm talking to (or at least that it's the same entity from session to session).

In my relations with guilds, this had lead to considerable friction with other people. As an officer, if I ever see account sharing going on on a member who has access to our guild bank, I demote them and all their alts to a rank without such access. When I talk with the other officers about this, they typically don't see the issue. In some cases, I've found out that other officers have shared account info themselves, between siblings or friends, and don't see it as an issue.

Read more →

Filed under: Officers' Quarters (Guild Leadership)

Blizzard rolls out new Battle.net accounts


We gave you a heads up a bit ago on the preparations for the new battle.net accounts, and now they're here, both for the EU and, apparently in the US only for now. We saw a "preview" of these accounts back during Wrath of the Lich King Beta, when we signed in using our email addresses and got a pet penguin in the mail "as a thank you for signing up for a Battle.net account," But now they're here and they're live.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Achievements

3 day credit for NA, EU customers


When patch 3.0.2 hit, we had a very long maintenance, shading towards 24 hours for some realms. And since then we haven't always had the best of realm stability; I know my own realm has had plenty of restarts, downed instance servers, and lag spikes in the past few weeks. It would have made raiding pretty hard if they hadn't nerfed the pants off it.

Blizzard knows about the realm problems as well as anybody, and as is their tendency, they're compensating for it by giving us all playtime credits. This time it's a full three days, for anyone with an active account on US, Oceanic, Latin American, European, and Russian realms (so basically everyone except Asia; the Asian realms have a different payment structure).

That's one thing I really like about Blizzard. They may mess up, but at least they try to fix it. Now can I have a Squashling, please?

Filed under: Realm News, Blizzard

WoW Insider Interview: Blizzard speaks about Authenticator security


About a month and a half ago, we reported on the story of a player who had apparently gotten their account hacked while they were using the new Blizzard Authenticator key, and it raised a lot of questions in players' minds about the only hardware Blizzard's ever made: just what does the Authenticator do to protect players' accounts? Have Authenticators actually prevented accounts from being hacked? And what would it take to, through social engineering or other methods, actually remove an Authenticator from an account?

At the time we published that first story (which was later disputed by a customer support representative), Blizzard contacted us here at WoW Insider, offering to clear up players' concerns about the new keys. We quickly submitted to them a few questions pulled from our own writers and a few submitted by readers, and they've now returned the answers to us -- you can find Blizzard's answers to our questions about the Authenticator after the break. Thanks to Blizzard for answering our questions about how these keys work, and clarifying some of the issues around their security.

Read more →

Filed under: Blizzard, Interviews, Hardware, Account Security

Blizzard reveals new Battle.net features

DIII.net has a great writeup of everything Blizzard has said so far about the new Battle.net features, and while most of the information applies more to Diablo III and Starcraft II, there's some good tidbits in there for WoW fans as well. Battle.net is Blizzard's oldest online service -- it predates WoW by a few years and was notably used to play Warcraft 3, Diablo 2 and Starcraft online. It's making a return with a revamp for the release of Starcraft II, and in addition to the previously mentioned ability Battle.net will give playes to track achievements across all Blizzard games, the system will have a much more social feel than the previous incarnation of the service.

Player accounts, avatars, icons, and friend lists are all planned, and odds are that services like the Armory and even the WoW sign in may be tied to your Battle.net account in some way. Tournaments and rankings will be included (though it remains to be seen how this might be implemented in World of Warcraft), and Battle.net will even offer players the ability to save and share replays of Starcraft II games, and other e-sport-like features.

That last feature would be a perfect fit for WoW's Arenas, of course, but as much as players would like to be able to spectate Arena matches, odds are that there would have to be a lot of behind-the-scenes coding done on Blizzard's side. Starcraft is being built from the ground up to record matches, of course, but WoW's Arena system doesn't have that ability built in, and putting it in might be more work than Blizzard wants to do on that one area of the game. No word yet on when we might get the new Battle.net (odds are it'll come out right around the Starcraft II release, whenever that is), but from the look of it, Blizzard has big plans to expand the social networks they've built into World of Warcraft towards all of their properties.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Wrath of the Lich King, Account Security

Breakfast topic: Account count

I'm not sure how many World of Warcraft subscriptions are currently active. The popularity of the game skyrocketed and then seems to have leveled off. Player numbers have certainly been bolstered by the Recruit-a-Friend promotion. I'm not convinced that it has actually brought any new players into the game. I know several people who begun additional accounts under this new scheme, and a handful of players that have returned to the game. I'm sure there are some new rookies, but they're a fraction of the new accounts.

I'm working on my third account. My friend with recruitment benefits and I have been soaring through the levels. I was planning on starting a third account come Wrath anyway, but now seems like as good of a time as any.

How many accounts do you have?
None, I read WoW Insider for the articles332 (2.8%)
One is enough for me8566 (71.9%)
Two, but I had both before Recruit-a-Friend1518 (12.7%)
Two, triple XP is too hard to resist751 (6.3%)
Three or Four457 (3.8%)
Five, I like to round out my own party104 (0.9%)
More than five, don't be jealous179 (1.5%)

Filed under: Polls, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Breakfast Topics, Leveling, Alts

Authenticator ordering leads to unexplained refunds

We've already reported that the Blizzard Authenticator is sold out, but here's another twist to the story. WoW Insider reader Ryan told us that he placed his order last Monday, before the sell out was announced.

However, instead of getting his Authenticator, he instead got an unexplained refund. With no other word from Blizzard, they simply canceled the order and refunded the money. He talked to a coworker who had also ordered the Authenticator and found that he had the same experience. As of yet, Blizzard has not explained the refund to him.

It's likely that Ryan was simply unlucky enough to place his order after they'd sold out but before they'd officially announced it, but there's other somewhat unfortunate implications. If they're refunding his order instead of honoring it, it suggests that they don't expect to have any new Authenticators ready for quite some time.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Hardware, Account Security

WoW Insider Twitter returns with updates from the whole team

Back during Blizzcon last year (it seems so long ago now, doesn't it?) we started up a WoW Insider Twitter account so you folks could get updates from right there on site as the event went down. After Blizzcon ended, though, we left the account to lay dormant for a while, and we didn't post any tweets in a few months. We're back, though -- if you're on Twitter, make sure to head over there and follow our feed.

Twitter, if you're unaware, is a fun little messaging service, about halfway between email and instant messenger. From now on, our Twitter account (@WoWInsider, obviously) will feature not only periodic updates on posts we think worth tweeting about, but also little insights on what our writers are up to around the realms, whether it's grinding rep in Blade's Edge, raiding Black Temple with our guilds, or running an ICftB event.

It's just another fun way to see what we're up to (especially for smaller, more personal things that don't really warrant a whole post). You can follow our feed on the Twitter link above, and soon, we should have Twitter updates posted here on our homepage as well. WoW Insider's Twitter is back -- if you're on Twitter, make sure to follow and keep an eye on what we're doing.

Filed under: WoW Insider Business, Virtual selves, Odds and ends

Around Azeroth

Around Azeroth

Featured Galleries

It came from the Blog: Occupy Orgrimmar
Midsummer Flamefest 2013
Running of the Orphans 2013
World of Warcraft Tattoos
HearthStone Sample Cards
HearthStone Concept Art
Yaks
It came from the Blog: Lunar Lunacy 2013
Art of Blizzard Gallery Opening

 

Categories

Joystiq

Massively

Engadget