I live! (virtually)

Following up on my little World of Warcraft hacking incident over the weekend…

I called Blizzard not long after they opened at about 11:00 Eastern yesterday, and after waiting on hold for 20 minutes, I got a customer service rep who just could not have been nicer or more professional.  I told her my tale of woe, gave her the account information, and she immediately changed my account email address to the right one, mailed me a temp password, unlocked the account, and sent me some extra security information as well.  Top-notch service on the phone.

So as soon as I got home, I logged in, and I found that the situation was simultaneously better and worse than I thought it’d be.

I logged on Linedan first because, let’s face it, Tankycow is my main.  Always has been, always will be.  His bags and bank looked like a wasteland.  (“Well, at least you can’t bitch at me about bag space anymore,” I said to my wife.)  While he’d lost none of his primary tanking gear, his DPS gear set was gone, as were all his potions and bandages and food, his ore and bars and weightstones, cloth, stuff like that.  Some items had been stripped from his bank, including a few weapons only hung onto for sentimental value.  And yet, there were odd exceptions.  Expensive blue gems and all his primal materials were left in his bank while cheap green crap around them was taken.  They took his bullets, but left a half-stack of arrows.  And none of his tanking gear–a mixture of badge loot, Tier 4, Tier 5, and items from Tempest Keep and Serpentshrine Cavern–was taken.  None of his professions were changed, there was no vandalism.  It looked like a quick smash-and-grab burglary.

Ditto on my hunter Illithanis, who belongs to the same guild as Linedan (Noxilite on Feathermoon).  Her stuff that she was wearing was left behind, but her bags were emptied of potions, food, water, bandages, etc., and sellable stuff (like half her crappy RP armor that I kept because it matches and looks good), but not her arrows.

None of my other characters, Alliance or Horde, were touched.  All my high-levels are on Feathermoon, and of them, only my two in Noxilite–Linedan and Illithanis–were bothered.  All my others didn’t have a thing disturbed and lost no money, in contrast to the ~1400 gold that I lost off those two.

So I filed a petition around 5:20.  Not five minutes later, a GM was whispering to me.  (If you play WoW, you know that is blazingly fast response.)  I explained the situation and answered a few simple questions, and then the GM went off and did GM Things, explaining that the ticket would be escalated to whatever department full of ex-KGB agents and MI6 types that Blizzard uses to track down account hax0rs.

30 minutes later I got two emails from Blizz listing the MASSIVE amount of stuff that was immediately being restored (a preliminary restore, as they stated, pending further investigation–a sort of get-back-on-your-feet thing).  30 minutes.  I’ve known people who waited weeks to get their items back, even provisionally, and I got mine back in 30 minutes.  I can’t get a gorram pizza around here in 30 minutes, and a game company in California restored all my important missing virtual toys that fast.

Most of the stuff they restored were things that were taken from our guild bank…and there were a lot.  It took me the better part of an hour and a half to sort through it all.  I still appear to be missing all my mundane stuff like potions, bandages, food, etc., but that’s simple to replace.  If the worst thing I lose out of this entire experience is 1400 gold (which is, what, 13 trips to Quel’danas?) and the enchant off Lin’s Dragonstrike?  I will have come out pretty well indeed.

Kudos to Blizzard.  Those of us who play WoW a bit more than might be healthy tend to rag on them a lot even as they continue to feed us our Warcrack.  But in this case, their customer service has been absolutely stellar–fast, professional, understanding, and accurate.  It’s the kind of customer service that you’d hope to get from somebody like, say, a major computer company (coughMicrosoftcough) or a utility or a bank, but you never do.  Great job, Blizzard.

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