I have been recently the victim of an attack on my XBox live account. The hijackers ended up getting away with 12 transactions worth about $211.75. The transfers started Saturday the 14th of January 2012 and the last one I can tell was the 15th of January of 2012. I thought I would log my experience with this issue and Microsoft to help people realize this is an issue, and to take security precautions. The email I had signed up for with XBox live was in use nowhere else and the few times I did sign in at a computer was at work, with no way of keyloggers, etc… The only application I had linked with my account was Facebook, but will take it off as soon as my account becomes active.
1/16/2012 8:15 am – I’m checking emails for work and notice 12 transactions with Paypal to Microsoft for XBox live points. Knowing my internet was down the last few days, I knew my account had been compromised.
1/16/2012 9:10 am – Had submitted a call back with Microsoft. It had however only rang once and had not been able to reach it in time so I called back the number and got a gentleman that works with billing who took my information and opened up a case for me. This is when I was informed that I will most likely have to wait 9-12 days for the summary of what will be returned to me, etc… I then changed my password and set up my security information shortly after
1/16/2012 10:30 am – Submitted the fraud claim to Paypal to ask to hold the charges. Kind of confused how it will work since I submitted all 12 transactions. Only 9 showed up on the confirmation screen. I then got emails about 10 of the transactions…
1/16/2012 2:00 pm – I was looking at my emails for anything else that might help and searched for Microsoft related emails in my inbox. I found change of password request forms in my spam folder for some reason. They had been trying a password for a little less than a month (Password reset request was on 12-23-2012). I then logged into my live account and took a look at the damage. My name was gone along with my correct age. It seemed that had changed everything except my backup email. I then noticed had a few more friends on my friends list that I did not recognize. 5 more to be exact.
1/16/2012 2:35 pm – Had checked with my friends and got an exact list of people that were new to the list. With this information, I thought I’d pass on the friends, and the one name that seemed to be linked between them all minus one. I then opened up another ticket to submit these names.
I had called this morning in reference to my account being hijacked and some unauthorized purchases. I reset and changed my password and went online to see what recent activity had occurred. I had noticed that there were 5 new ‘friends’ on my account that I do not know and were added my account was hijacked. I thought I would pass on these names to help catch/stop the hijackers and to help out my issue at all. These names are latterday g, kornman00, Huztlerz323, Bell Bullocks, and EL BuM1 . The only friend in common I seemed to have with all these people was El Bum1 except Huztlerz323.
I hope this helps,
1/16/2012 6:06 pm – Microsoft emails me back with a suggestion to report them. Really?! I need something done now. I found a link with who stole my accounts and all you suggest is report them…
Thank you for contacting XBOX Customer Support. I am Jin and I will be assisting you today.
I understand that your Xbox Live account was somehow compromised and you are reporting noticeable changes on your friends list after the said incident.
If you strongly believe that these individuals are working in connivance with the person who hijacked your account, you could file a complaint against them.
To file a complaint
…[This portion of the email omitted due to unrelated length of text] ….
XBOX Support Services
1/17/2012 9:30 am – Paypal still hasn’t emailed me back, and the charges were deducted from my bank account.
1/19/2012 3:18 pm – Microsoft emails me about locking my account and when to expect the money if they think fraud has occurred. They also mention they are going to lock down my account. Let’s hope they do and nobody can spend any more of my cash.
Service Request Number: _________
Dear Xbox LIVE Customer,
Your report of unauthorized access to your Xbox LIVE account has been received by our fraud investigations team. To protect your privacy and account information, your Xbox LIVE account is temporarily locked and sign-in is disabled. If you use this Windows Live ID for any other Microsoft services, they will also be locked during our investigation. Your account cannot be accessed by anyone outside of our fraud investigations team and no charges can be made to your account during the investigation.
Because we place great importance on the privacy of our customers’ information and the safety of their experience online we thoroughly investigate each and every reported case. We have highly skilled agents working on your case; however the investigation and resolution process takes from one to two weeks on average depending on the nature of the case. During this time we appreciate your continued patience.
To ensure you can continue to enjoy the services offered with Xbox LIVE we are providing you a free, 30-day Xbox LIVE membership code that you can use to create a new, temporary account or save and add to your own account once it becomes available again. Learn how to redeem a prepaid code.
Your 30-day Xbox LIVE membership code is:
If we verify that fraudulent purchases were made on your Xbox LIVE account while your account was not under your control, the purchase amounts or Microsoft Points will be refunded. Refunds will be processed within 10 business days after the conclusion of the investigation though it may take 1 to 2 billing cycles for them to appear on your credit card statement. If multiple purchases were made, each purchase may appear separately on your statement.
Please continue to check your email for status updates regarding this case. Additionally, we may email you with additional questions to help complete our investigation. If you have any concerns please contact us and be sure to include service request number ______.
The Xbox LIVE Investigations Team
Well, I wish they could move quicker, but I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and will wait the suggested time before blowing up.
1/27/2012 8:17 am – Noticed emails Paypal saying my payment had went through. I had noticed three of the most recent unauthorized payments were not included, so I sent another request for those as well. I then got the information together and went to Microsoft’s support page.
1/27/2012 10:10 am – Started a unsuccessful chat with a Microsoft agent regarding the case. Basically a waste of 30 min when all she should of said in the first place was to call in. Also, something important to note as well, I had never received an email from Microsoft asking to submit more information or to all. I checked all my email address and even the spam folders.
You are now chatting with ‘Franchesca’.
Franchesca: Thank you for contacting Xbox Customer Support. Give me just one moment to review your issue.
Franchesca: Hello Jacob. How are you today?
Jacob: Pretty well, how about yourself?
Franchesca: I am wonderful, thank you for asking.
Franchesca: Just to make sure that I do understand your issue, you want some information about your case. Have I got this all correct?
Jacob: Yes, and ask a few questions about case as well (submitting player reviews, etc…)
Franchesca: What type of information can I give you today?
Jacob: Is there an estimated time when my account will be active again? I had submitted a case with Paypal, and they have refunded most of my money this morning, but appears my account is still blocked
Franchesca: Can I have your case number and I can try to give you an estimate time?
Franchesca: Thank you. Bear with me just one moment please while I check on it for you.
Jacob: No problem
Franchesca: I apologize about the wait. Please bear with me a few more moments.
Franchesca: Thank you.
Franchesca: Thank you for being patient with me. However, you would need to contact customer support in order to provide some information pertaining to your case that we are not allowed to receive over the phone.
Jacob: How should I send the information then?
Franchesca: You should call in that would be the only way.
Jacob: Ah, confused with “provide some information pertaining to your case that we are not allowed to receive over the phone.” thought you meant fax or something similar. I do have one more question. I had submitted another ticket about new ‘friends’ that were added to my account when my account was not under my control. I had submitted the names and the return email was to submit a player review. I obviously can’t do that on my xbox since I cant sign into my account. What’s the best solution?
Franchesca: I am sorry that was a typo I meant chat.
Franchesca: You will have to wait until your account is back in your possession in order to do the player review.
Jacob: Even if the names might have a correlation with the case?
Franchesca: During the investigation, we will check all of that. We do have the email so they will check that as well.
Jacob: Ok, well I guess I will call and figure out what they need. Thank you for your help Franchesca
Franchesca: You are welcome. Is there anything else that I can help you with today?
Jacob: Nope, only problem
Franchesca: Okay, thank you again for your patient.
1/27/2012 11:48 am –
Called Microsoft to give them the ‘information’ they were missing. The call started off kind of rough since they needed a security question to be answered correctly to continue. I did not remember setting up the question or answer but told her the correct answer anyway. After trying a few times, she mentioned to get the original card # the account was signed up with. This was of course my mom’s since it was before I was even 18 and did not have it with me (I got live service when it was first released) She then pointed me to account.live.com. At that site I was supposed to log into my account, then change my security question, something the hacker could of easily done in the first place. After changing the answer to the correct one, while she was still on the phone mind you, I was able to proceed. Psh pointless, some security Microsoft.
What it ended up being was my ConsoleID and my Serial # that I originally provided did not match what was on record for the original XBox. I asked her why I was not informed about the numbers not matching since I told the first representative to call or email me if there are any issues. Her response? “I Don’t know” . I had told her my brother had called and told me the numbers off the back, she then replied that the serial number and console ID were in the settings, not on the console anywhere, even though on the back of the console it says Product ID and Serial #… something the first representative should have mentioned to me to prevent this call in the first place. She then informed me that she was going to escalate the issue again… IT SHOULDNT OF BEEN DEESCALATED IN THE FIRST PLACE!!! So I calmed down, went back to work, and was going to trying again when I got home.
1/28/2012 11:44 am – Talked Microsoft and heard some good news for once. She did tell me that since the hacker did not have a chance to change the regions on the account, so my wait should decrease to about 3 days, and expect a an email and resolution at that time. Hopefully soon I’ll be on my account…
2/3/2012 8:57 am – It’s been almost a week and no email. I called about my status, and still no luck. She had mentioned that the process had started all over on the 28th of January (2012) and that I needed to wait 7 -10 days. This means another weekend I will not be on my account. I also checked my Paypal account shortly after getting off the phone. Still no resolution on the last three transactions and I’m still ‘waiting’ on the merchant (Microsoft). Well, looks like I’ll have to wait till next week…
2/7/2012 3:18 am – The last three charges on my Paypal account were reversed. I now have all my money back, but no account. Going to give them a few more days for the investigation. Getting close to a month…
**Update Since Post**
2/21/2012 10:56 am – Tweeted at XBOX Live Support and got told to call again.
So I called and had been told the case is still open. However since the case is past 25 days, the support fellow said he would email the investigator to see what the issue was. My new expected date is Monday. Another weekend without my account.
2/28/2012 12:35 – After tweeting for a few days at Microsoft, their corporate office called with a resolution. Now I’m off to try it on the XBox to see if my account is in fact, back.
Some more stories about XBox Live accounts being hacked :
Kotaku – http://kotaku.com/5873604/is-microsofts-xbox-live-hacking-problem-worse-than-microsoft-realises