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January 17th, 2010

I’ve Been Banned, Bitches

On December 13 I wrote a post about World of Warcraft email spam and detailed how scammers will attempt to get your log-on information so that they can steal your account and use it for farming or spamming.  Last night I learned that I had been banned from my World of Warcraft account.  Yes, you read that right, I have been permanently banned because - apparently - some hacker got my information and was using my account to spam up the chat channels in Azeroth with offers of third-party crap (likely gold).

Isn't it ironic, don't you think?

I had noticed something was up with my account back when Blizzard made us create a new account over at Battle.net.  Every time I tried to logon to WoW after that, it would not accept my password.  Miffed, I would go log into the website and reset my password; it never crossed my mind that perhaps my account had been hacked and someone was changing my password.  Doh!

This stopped after awhile and I had no more problems and thought no more of it.  Granted, I have not signed into WoW in a few weeks but when I tried to last night I got the message that I was in serious trouble.  I clicked the link they gave me (that onimously ended with banned.html) and it told me to look for an email.  Sure enough, I had gotten one on January 11:

****Notice of Account Closure****

Account Name: SKATOOLAKI

Account Action: Closure
Reason for Action: In-Game Chat Policy Violation - Advertisement and Spamming

This account was closed because a character on the account repeatedly abused World of Warcraft's in-game chat system. This abuse includes advertising third party services/websites and repeatedly spamming in-game chat channels. Abuse of this nature pollutes chat channels shared by all players and harms the game environment as a whole.

You may not perform activity that we consider to be damaging to World of Warcraft. Engaging in such activity violates the World of Warcraft Terms of Use (http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/legal/termsofuse.html).

Any recurring subscriptions on this account have been suspended to prevent further monetary charges. For any concerns or disputes regarding this action, please reply directly to this e-mail.

Regards,

Account Administration
Blizzard Entertainment
www.worldofwarcraft.com

Lovely, no?

Obviously I am not a spammer or a scammer or a hacker.  I responded with the following:

To Whom It May Concern:

I am writing to dispute the claim of in-game chat policy violation.  I, personally, have not signed into my WoW account in a few weeks.  As well, I have been a subscriber in good standing since 2004; a look at my records will confirm this.  I am not affiliated with any third-party software or companies and do not - and would not - engage in any type of spamming behavior.

I have not noticed anything unusual with my account in the last month, however, when we created the Battle.net accounts, I noticed that every time I tried to log into World of Warcraft, it would not take my password.  Probably 3-4x's, I had to log on to the website and change my password.  After awhile this stopped, and I thought no more of it but I realize now it is possible that my account was being hacked into at that time and the hackers were changing my password.

Please let me know what needs to be done to remedy this situation and have my account reinstated.

Sincerely,
Shanna
'skatoolaki'

We'll see where it goes from here.  I would think that they could check my records and see that I have been a subscriber since 2004; why would I all of a sudden start spamming?

Hopefully my characters are all still there and intact.  I have this nightmare of signing on to find they've sold all of my gear or deleted my characters or even sold them (not that they're worth much to anyone but me).  There's no telling what they've been doing with my account or how/if they were using my characters for it.  I don't think they were because had one of my characters been signed on, someone in the guild (which is all family) would have noticed it.  They probably made some Level 1 character to stand there in the middle of the city and hawk spam gold crap like they normally do.

Whatever happens, I'll let you know.  I hope I do not lose my account for good and I hope my characters are all okay.

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