The One and Only Paulisdead wrote:
Great idea, but online petitions are worthless, sorry but they are useless and dont ever get anyone anywhere.
Almost as useless as sitting around doing @#%^ all about this entire situation until the RMT control 50% of the accounts in existence.
The malicious script that caused all this nonsense has been taken down, and RMT aren't stupid enough to eliminate half of their potential market base.
Online petitions are very difficult to take seriously, especially in cases like this where Square-Enix knows what people want them to do. Honestly, the only people against making it easier to reclaim an account you once owed are those who bought accounts or got them as a hand-me-down from a friend; two things that Square-Enix doesn't want people to do in the first place.
There's really nothing more we can do about it except cross our fingers and hope they make the right decision.
Unfortunatly, time has proven Square Enix lacking when it comes to certain aspects of the game.
Take the windower for example - it was the single biggest mod you could give FFXI, it allowed you to use your computer the way it is suposed to be used, you could multitask, check e-mails, and not be confined to staring at your charecter for several hours.
However, it has taken Square Enix years to impliment the changes needed so that Final Fantasy XI can be run in windowed mode on the PC, and that was only after the plethora of people using the windower interface to use their own illegal mods to gain advantages in the game, neccesitating the creation of the Special Task Force
, that forced them to act. Even now, the official windowed version isn't perfect, the unofficial windower outstrips it even now for functionality and general polish.
So lets look at the current situation. A website, which is poor on any good day, hosts malicious code that exploits a backdoor into Internet Explorer, through Realplayer and nicks your account details. That in itself is rather clever, it demonstrates the lengths these Real Money Traders are willing to go to keep in business. The accounts details are changed, charecters moved to different servers, and hundreds, sometimes thousands of hours of work is removed in the blink of an eye.
The horrible thing is that this kind of crime is still affecting a statistically small number of accounts. The RMT'ers will be clever enough to keep the number of accounts compromised low to try and avoid Square Enix's attention for as long as possible. More accounts stolen = more angry players = eventaully, Square Enix listens and is forced to react.
Sadly, even when Square Enix do catch on, which they will as this kind of attack is killing player confidence, there isn't a lot they can, or could do. The whole basis of that statement rests on whether the central servers keep periodic backups of all player data (I would imagine they do, in case of Catastrophic failure
) , if those backups extend to POL Membership Information (Not so much possible due to Data Protection Acts
), and whether such backups are automatically made in the event of payment details changing, or in the case of a world transfer. (And thats the key point
It's a key point, as its both a sensible precaution for a company to backup the entire ID if the charecter changes world, lets say, if something goes wrong. Rollback, start again. Technically, account recovery in theory is very possible for this instance. The difficulty is with Square Enix themselves. Now they have found themselves in the situation of not putting adiquate protection on changing card details or account information (Safeguards such as "Secret Questions" and "Secret Answers", freely settable. Provided you dont keep a file on your computer with the answers, you don't tell strange and shadey geeks who come up to you in the street and ask you for your secret answer, and that Square Enix's own servers have enough security (128kb Encryption), this quite frankly basic security measure makes a huge difference.
) But lets face it, time has not proven Square Enix to be the quickest off the marks to protect its legitimate playerbase, which is an aweful shame for those of us that love this game.
There is nothing I can say to those that have been affected by this, I can't comprehend how messed up you feel, how angry you must be. I know how I would feel if I were the victim of such an attact, and who knows, they may even get me too. But without any malace, you unlucky ones are the wakeup call to the community, the lesson that both we and Square Enix must learn. To the players
■ The OP mentions an Online Petition. Why is it a bad idea? The more people who sign it, and lets face it, it takes less than a minute, thats one more voice.
■ E-mail Square Enix. This can be done via their website or
via PlayOnline. Tell them your stories, what has happened. Tell them that their account security is inadiquate, and does not protect players from these kind of attacks. Tell them that players will always come to FFXI websites outside Square Enix, and that every time you log on the Internet, that danger can never be avoided. It is not the fault of players that they visit community websites, we are the victims of malicious people, and we need help to prevent them doing damage.
■ Send them links to stories told on forums, to online petitions, let them see how this issue affects us, and how the community is coming together on this problem.
■ Take precautions when surfing ANY websites. For these who use Internet Explorer, regularly use P2P programs or use a computer without a firewall, you are putting yourself at a huge risk. It's documented, it's well known, and it's time that those of you that don't look after their computers security are brought to task for your own good. Get Firefox
- Firefox Site For even greater security, install the following plugins using the inbuilt manager and links in Firefox
• Ad-Block Plus
- a right click function that supports wildcards. Use it to eliminate every RMT advert you see, on every website. As well as any other advert you want gone.
------ If anyone can suggest any other plugins to use, please feel free. Run Anti Spyware programs.
• Spybot Search and Destroy
FREE - Website
FREE - Website Keep a Firewall/Anti Virus
• AVG Anti Virus
FREE - http://free.grisoft.com/
• Zone Alarm Firewall
FREE - http://www.zonealarm.com/store/content/home.jsp
------ Only install trusted applications. Dont simply install the first thing that claims to be "Free Anti Virus" - there are MANY rogue and dangerous programs. For more information, visit http://www.spywarewarrior.com/rogue_anti-spyware.htm
■ Don't buy gil. Don't even think about it. Don't look at their websites. Don't click their adverts. Just don't. It was an advert by one of these ******* companies that started this, so don't go jumping back into major danger - you are asking for trouble.
■ Change your password on POL regularly, to alpha-numeric passwords that are NOT used on any other websites. To Square Enix
I hope you are reading. 90% of people know/do exactly the right thing and stay safe on the web. That's not to say that the 10% who don't are stupid and subject to Darwin's law of clever-live, silly-die. Many decent, hard working, likeable players, who have let their concentration slip, who have clicked without thinking, been in the wrong place at the wrong time, or who may have been targetted by RMT themselves, have fallen victim to this.
■ Introduce measures to add extra password protection, lock, prevent or otherwise hinder changes to membership information, payment information, or the world transfer service. Use measures that do not store cookies, nor save the password on our or your systems. Make sure that something like this can never, ever happen again.
■ Re-imburse players who have lost their accounts. Even if its a 3 month old Backup, someone who has leveled to 75 in multiple jobs and been in game for years likely knows people to help them get their gear back, and given the choice between having to get another Kirin's Osode, another Nobles Tunic, another 100 peice currency, these people will simply be happy to be back ingame. Many have been paying for years to play this game. We have demonstrated loyalty - its time to get some back.
I don't expect people to change their ways, I don't expect Square Enix to act overnight and sort everything with one giant "Gods only Anti Sun'uva'*****" stick. But if even one player changes his/her ways and avoids something like this. If one person decides to apply pressure on Square Enix for change. If even one Square Enix employee is moved by this, it will have been worth the time taken to write this.