Closed account -abuse of the economy question

86 Orc Warrior

After a nearly 2 year hiatus from Wow the expansion looked interesting so I spent the $$ and started playing again. After 3 weeks of play I receive the following email:

Reason for Closure: Terms of Use Violation -- Exploitative Activity: Abuse of the Economy

This account was closed because one or more characters were identified exchanging, or contributing to the exchange of, in-game property (items or gold) for "real-world" currency. This exchange process negatively impacts the World of Warcraft game environment by detracting from the value of the in-game economy.

I opened a ticket and within a couple hours I received the following email:

Thank you for your patience and understanding while we investigated the situation that you reported. We have concluded our investigation of the account, and found it to be eligible for restoration. We apologize for any inconvenience the process may have caused you. The details of the characters and/or items restored are below. The items will be attached to an in-game mail that will expire after 90 days.

So great I have a playable account again go team GM )

The issue is I didn't buy Gold or items etc... I have 50k or so from when I quit playing 2 years ago.
Is there some “new” rule about using the AH to buy Green gear to quest in?
Did I buy something from the AH that flagged my account?

Oh and yes I use an authenticator and my comp is up to date yada yada. Yes I am the only person with access.
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90 Troll Druid
Have you purchased anything that seemed too good to be true? Sometimes you can get hit with this because you purchased something being sold from a compromised account.
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90 Human Mage
You did something that tripped an alarm at Blizzard that indicated that you were somehow affiliated with the Real money trading scene. Sometimes innocents are caught up in that. It's unfortunate, but unavoidable. This is why there is an appeals process, so that Blizzard can take a closer look at accounts that the owner believes to be clean.

Exactly what it was you did that tripped the alarm, Blizzard will not tell you. They don't want to give the black-hats information they can use to try to get around the protections.

Happening once, it was probably just a fluke. If it happens again, pay closer attention to how you use the AH or otherwise move money around.

EDIT: Upon seeing Orlyia's post, I realize that the situation isn't what I initially thought it was. Sounds like your account actually was compromised. Best follow Orlyia's advice and get your computer cleaned up.
Edited by Teliah on 10/13/2012 9:40 AM PDT
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Support Forum Agent
The fact you have an authenticator is extremely troubling, Gnarum - because malicious things were done.

That tends to indicate some extremely nasty malware on your system. Please, please please do a full system scan or this is very likely to continue to happen. This is not common, but it can be the devil's own time to root out this type of malware completely.

I'd also HIGHLY recommend setting up another - totally unrelated email for use with once you are certain your system is secure.

Security Checklist

Changing your Password/Email

While YOU may not have done those things, the folks abusing your account did - and will undoubtedly continue to do so if they have the opportunity of access.
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90 Troll Druid
10/13/2012 09:38 AMPosted by Orlyia
Please, please please do a full system scan or this is very likely to continue to happen.

When you do scan, I would suggest having the wow login screen up with gibberish in the password field. Sometimes these types of malicious software only come out when there is information to steal.
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61 Worgen Priest
10/13/2012 09:31 AMPosted by Gnarum
Is there some “new” rule about using the AH to buy Green gear to quest in?

No there is not.
10/13/2012 09:31 AMPosted by Gnarum
Did I buy something from the AH that flagged my account?

It is possible that you bought item(s) that were from a stolen/hacked account or obtained by illicit means. If say a 100k mount is for sale really cheap, for example, this could have been obtained by bad means. This can cause an account to get in trouble.
Oh and yes I use an authenticator and my comp is up to date yada yada. Yes I am the only person with access.

It is possible that legit programs used on other games can trigger warden and cause this ban. Make sure you have no other games or programs associated with those games running (or loaded into memory) when playing wow.

Lastly false positives do happen occasionally. It could be that your account was flagged because you just re-opened it and started purchasing items. After 2 years your IP changed, your computer could have changed, or they might not have a lot of info to go on from previous play. Info is not keep forever.

Usually if the computer flags/bans/suspends an account it is temp until a real person can look at it and make sense of it.

Edit just say orlyia's post. Please follow those instructions. She knows what she is talking about.
Edited by Tinkrbella on 10/13/2012 9:45 AM PDT
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86 Orc Warrior
Thanks for the replies

As to the blue suggestions I did the following:

Full Norton scan – clean btw
Changed my email
Changed password for game and email
Check all running services and processes – nothing out of the ordinary

Hopefully that clears up whatever flagged my account for malicious activity
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90 Blood Elf Rogue
I'd run MalwareBytes to on the safe side. Norton is notorious for missing things.
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85 Worgen Rogue
Ravenhawke has a very good point. I would also download Hitman Pro, Kaspercy TDSS killer and Combofix. Run in that order and if anything is their they will find and remove it. Might need to run in Safe Mode to be sure but they should kill anything you got.
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