When you launch the Guild Wars application, you can see important messages from ArenaNet. Typically, the weekend event is the main highlight. The message box can also includes a warning about proper game etiquette. The message is usually something minor, but today it was not. There appears to have been a major breach of security. An ominous warning, highlighted in red, informed me that I should change my password today. Upon further investigation, it seems that a fansite might have been compromised. I had a feeling that this would happen someday. By cracking the weaker security of a fansite, hackers could harvest user names and passwords from Guild Wars players. Since many players do not use unique passwords, their Guild Wars account is vulnerable.
It seems that the situation escalated throughout the day. Here’s the first warning…
Strong Passwords Promote Safety
Account theft is a real problem in online games. One of the best ways to keep your account safe is to use a complex password and change it regularly. You should also use completely different passwords for your games, fansite registrations, and all other password uses. Strong passwords contain at least 8 characters and use a minute of letters and numbers.
Later, the message changed to something more serious…
Please change your password today!
We are seeing hackers try to log into Guild Wars accounts using passwords stolen from other games and web sites. For your security, you should never use the same or a similar password for Guild Wars that you use for any other purpose. We strongly recommend that all Guild Wars players change their passwords immediately.
Photics.com / Guildwars.us does not appear to be involved in this attack. Yet, I feel that this will lead to trouble for all Guild Wars fansites. Why doesn’t ArenaNet have an official forum, an official auction house, an official e-zine and an official blogging system? If ArenaNet took the community in-house, they could improve security and set standards. When Guild Wars was young, maybe ArenaNet didn’t want the headache of managing a community. But now, the other extreme has hit them. What if ArenaNet decides that it’s in their best interest to do things themselves? It could seriously hurt fansites. Even though I’ve been doing the Guild Wars Fansite thing since 2003, I often wondered why ArenaNet just doesn’t do it themselves.
7 thoughts on “Guild Wars – Red Alert – Hack Attack!”
Also odd how nobody’s commented on this post…
I agree on the bit about Guild Wars not just doing it themselves! In all honesty, I expected a Guild Wars site-hosted forum the minute I signed up for the game! It’s really abnormal for them not to have one… to me, at least.
I believe they don’t have a hosted forum to minimize expenses, however I do far prefer an official wiki to offical forums, many people use their talk pages to discuss things.
I don’t know… I think the fact that Gaile and Regina use the Wiki as a way to communicate with the community shows a need for an official forum. Knowing Gaile’s background, it seems odd that they would hire her and not give her a forum to run.
Hey, that reminds me… do people want a forum over here?
A forum would be great, because everybody could post his blog, communicate with others and exchange experiences.
Why does not Guild Wars have a forum? Because (as you see on guildwarsguru) there is a huge amount of users, thousands of posts and a lot of moderators. Forums are a matter of the community. It would be very difficult to manage for arenanet.
Would you make a forum for us?
By the way: A hack is not stealing accounts, because people use the same email and password on other pages. A hack is a programm that is used to find the users password.
You want a forum? You got it!
I’m busy with another Guild Wars project right now. But when I’m ready, I can come back and make the Guildwars.us forums more pretty. What’s great about the forum is that you only need one login. This fansite is growing nicely… chat, blogs and now forums!
Anyhow, Emily would be the person to ask why there isn’t an official forum, she’s in charge of the Guild Wars website.
No, I think the one to ask is Mike O’Brien. Now that Jeff is gone, he’s the guy in charge of ArenaNet. This is an old issue… goes way WAY back. I probably shouldn’t complain too much. If ArenaNet made their own forum, and brought the community inward, I might not have this site… and Photics.com might be a World of Warcraft fansite. HA HA
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