So, most World of Warcraft players know the importance of account security. The login information for your account is actually worth more money on the black market than your credit card information is.I’m finishing up my dissertation, which is why I haven’t been around much. However, I wanted to get this post out while I had some time tonight since account security is serious business.
There are several really important things you can do to keep your account information safe:
- Create a unique e-mail address and password combination for your battle.net account that you don’t use for anything else. I have one game e-mail address that I use pretty much just for WOW, and the password attached to it is a password I don’t use on any gaming site. It is pretty much impossible for the hackers to get into Blizzard’s database. However, it’s much easier to get into fansite databases and steal information from there. So, have one e-mail address you register to all the fan sites, and then a different one you use for your actual login info. Then, use a totally unique password for the battle.net login. For example, when Sony was compromised a while back, they got a ton of information about your accounts, and if you shared your login info between Sony and Blizzard, then they got your login info for WOW from Sony. Since your D3/WOW login is worth more than any other login, make sure that it’s unique so that other people can’t get into it (and whatever you do, make the password to get into that e-mail account different than the one to get into the game, so that if they do get one, they don’t get the other!). If your battle.net login is the same as any other login password you use, go change your password right now! It is also pretty easy for you to create a new e-mail account to use as your battle.net login account, too.
- Get an authenticator. Having a unique password prevents one type of theft. However, getting an authenticator prevents you from the vast majority of types of theft. There are multiple kinds of authenticators. If you have a smart phone, you can get a free app to put on your phone. They make free authenticator apps for: Itunes (iphone or ipod touch), Android Market, Blackberry App world, & Zune. If you don’t have a phone that will work, you can buy the keychain authenticator at a pretty low cost. Keep in mind that authenticators are going to be required for using the real money auction house in D3 to keep people from being able to steal your hard earned cash.
- Make sure your antivirus program will actually search for keyloggers & rootkits. A lot of antivirus programs aren’t actually doing a good job of protecting your computer. Blizzard has a list of programs you can use for helping to keep your computer safe. Even if you have an authenticator, it’s good security practice for all your other accounts (other games, banking, ebay, et cetra) if you have programs that actually do the job of protecting your passwords. In the list for the Blizzard programs, I especially suggest picking up one of the anti-spyware or anti-rootkit programs listed towards the bottom of their page.
- And more! With the popularity of D3, and Mists coming out soon, there are lots of other little things you can do to protect the safety of your computer and your account. Having an authenticator, while really important, is only part of a package of good internet security practices. You should visit Blizzard’s security website to learn more about keeping your accounts safe and happy.