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Blizzard issued a World of Warcraft security alert today after a spate of unauthorized logins and player reports of “money laundering” scams. Access to the game’s mobile auction house app has also been suspended.
The move follows complaints from gamers that hundreds of thousands of in-game gold pieces had vanished from their accounts in “money laundering” scams using fake auctions, according to a report by WOW Insider.
Blizzard has emailed users whose accounts “showed signs of unauthorized access”, with an email explaining how to reset their accounts. The company said that only those not using the game’s authenticator (a two-factor security app/device) were at risk.
“At this time we have no reason to believe that accounts currently using an authenticator are at risk,” a company representative said, in an interview with Eurogamer.
“There’s been a recent increase in unauthorized World of Warcraft account logins via our website and the World of Warcraft mobile armory app,” Blizzard said via a post on Battle.net. “We’re in the process of notifying any account holders who were not using an authenticator and whose account showed signs of unauthorized access (e.g., logging in from an unusual IP address). If you are among this group, you will receive an email describing how to reset your account.”
The company said teams were working to refund stolen gold and items.
“While no means of account security is guaranteed, every precaution you take to secure your computer and your account—including changing your password periodically—adds another defensive barrier,” Blizzard said in its post. “We strongly encourage everyone to take a few moments to read through the World of Warcraft security tips on our support website.”
Author Rob Waugh, We Live Security