New cases of Xbox Live account hacking come to light

Friday, 6 January 2012 14:48 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

More reports of Xbox Live accounts being illegally accessed have come to light this week, with the latest claim coming from a user who discovered her account had been sold through a site operating out of China to a Polish Xbox Live user.

Apparently, after discovering that quite a few unauthorized purchases had been made through XBL using PayPal, the user contacted Microsoft Customer Service. After being assured her account was deactivated while an investigation was conducted, she went about her business. However, she found that 72 hours later, her account was not blocked by MS, and more money had been stolen from her account through PayPal. You can read her entire story through the link.

What she describes is just another occurrence in what has become a growing concern since October, when Ars first reported that hackers had gained access to XBL profiles and purchased points as well as FIFA 11 and FIFA 12.

Despite the obvious evidence of unauthorized access, Microsoft denied XBL had been compromised despite a “limited” number of outside account access.

However, a couple of months later, late December to be exact, Shacknews’ Xav de Matos discovered that his account had been hacked into as well, and was told by a Microsoft executive he had become a victim of a “phishing scam”.

Both Microsoft and EA told de Matos that each company was currently “working on the situation.” Meanwhile, more XBL users have contacted de Matos, stating they were currently experiencing issues with their accounts as well – some through Windows Live even, and the purchase was the Collector’s Edition of Rift.

All of this is nothing new, though, as account hacks have been reported as far back as November 2010 when The Sun (thanks, MCV) ran a feature focusing on the hack. Microsoft again quickly dismissed the issue, claiming it was a phishing scam affecting user accounts.

It is still unclear how the XBL accounts are being accessed, so until the situation is remedied, it would probably be in users’ best interest to purchase point card from retailers to buy XBL content instead of using PayPal or a credit card.