We were running through Grim Batol on heroic, when I started to see a Real ID friend logging on, and off, and on and off…..
Now I don’t normally like Real ID. I find it intrusive at best, and at worst I might have been known to swear loudly at it…..but if there’s one thing I despise more than my privacy being invaded it’s hackers and goldsellers. And tonight something seemed incredibly fishy with this person’s activity – aside from the fact he’d not said hello. In brief pauses in between fights, I clicked on the social panel, and saw something strange and my gut feeling was confirmed. So I asked for a pause in the action to follow it through. Lots of different characters popping up. I clicked on one and it had a typical JXSSWERFD goldseller name. Level 1 warrior, Elwynn Forest……Now I live in Wales and so does this friend. So technically it’s feasible that it could have been a genuine name. You know, all those lls and cwchs you know, from the land that brought you Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch*. There’s a gold seller name if ever….
At another pause, I clicked again.
My heart sank. Another goldseller style name.
We rang him, just in case my suspicions were wrong. Sadly they weren’t. He’d been hacked. So I opened a ticket, and reported it, and within the hour, everything had been sorted out. Really quick and impressive work by the GMs and I made certain to thank the one I spoke to, and wish them a happy New Year.
And I wandered away from the situation, mentally punching the air, happy at my -albeit small – victory over the hacker/goldseller, while the friend started to scan their computer very carefully.
But it got me thinking. Had this friend not been on Real ID, I wouldn’t have known, I wouldn’t have seen the cross server mad-and-out-of-character activity happening, and I certainly wouldn’t have been able to act as quickly. So, much as it DOES intrude on privacy, it can also serve as an early warning system for people. I was grateful for Real ID tonight. Damn. Didn’t think I’d ever see that one coming…..
*I’ve been there. It’s….yeah. A long name on a signpost.