Today one of my guildies accounts was hacked. We were in the middle of transferring between Hyjal and Serpentshrine Cavern, when he disappeared all of a sudden, and then logged back on within five minutes. Of course, we noticed straight away because he wasn’t responding to tells, and he dropped from the raid group. So out guild leader demoted him to prevent any access to the guild bank, and we just sat there.

I have to say it is one of the most horrible feelings in the world sitting there, completely helpless, just staring as you know your guild mates things are being sold or deleted. In my usual impulsive anger, I sent a series of abusive tells to the hacker. I really don’t know what I was hoping to achieve with this, and I got no reply, but the venting at least made me feel like I could do something, even if it was tiny. Of course, I got no response back. Perhaps my abuse actually made the hacker feel more inclined to destroy things. If that is the case, then I am deeply sorry. Especially since not all the things the hacker did were at all beneficial to anyone.

The hacker only accessed one of his characters, his main, and screwed with him. He sold off a variety of things from his main set and from his bank, so his main has been rendered essentially useless for the time being. He also dropped his alchemy profession, which I think is really low. Dropping a profession that people have worked at, spent time and gold on and value, for absolutely no profit is stupid and outright nasty. I hate to think that this was caused by my tells to the hacker. Especially since I am unsure if Blizzard can restore professions to a person.

Now, I am not sure why he didn’t try relogging in to boot the hacker off. I am guessing there is a reason why he didn’t, but I can not guess what it could be. He did try to change his password, but had trouble remembering the answer to his secret question (remember, always choose a secret question that you can easily remember!). By the time he got back in, it was too late.

So, in an open letter

Dear Mr/Ms Hacker,

Let’s be honest here. I really have no idea what your motivation is for hacking. I can not imagine that in this era of dailies you are that desperate for gold. I do not know whether you work for an RMT service, or whether you hack for personal gain. I can not fathom what it is that makes you want to steal other people’s things rather than earn them yourself. However, since you have some form of motivation, I would like to address some other issues.

If you hack into my friend’s account, could you please do the ‘decent’ thing and sell all the items? Please do not disenchant things, because it makes it very difficult for people to get items restored to them. I know you do not much care who you hurt, but if you could lessen the impact of these things, then that would be wonderful.

Do you really need to drop somebody’s professions? I assume the only motivation for hacking into someone’s account is profit, so there really is no need to undo many many months worth of work. Doing so is nothing more than petty and malicious. Sure, you may receive some tells from angry guild mates while you are in the middle of looting and plundering. You can’t expect these people to not be angry! These are friends of the person you are stealing from, they will feel defensive and upset. You would not like it if someone was stealing from one of your friends, would you?

Lastly, I urge you to reconsider your reasons for hacking. As I mentioned previously, there are easy (and much more honest!) ways of earning gold, which do not impact on other players in the game. Please remember that every character out there has a real person behind them. Yes, real people. People who get hurt and upset when their things are taken.

Yours Sincerely,

Saresa.

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One Response to “Dear Mr/Ms Hacker”
  1. I’m also not sure on the reasons for hacking other people’s accounts. I know sometimes hacked accounts are used to post keyloggers on the official forums. The main tank for the guild that I’m in had his account hacked a few months back and at first was told that he would be getting back his gear but without gems or enchants and he also wouldn’t be getting his gold back. That was devastating for him and the rest of us because he had a lot of expensive gems and enchants. He eventually got his gear back with enchants and gems intact though so the only real harm done was that we lost two nights of progression.

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