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ArenaNet to roll out Google Authenticator for Guild Wars 2

Breached account is a common issue among Guild Wars 2 players, echoing to GW2 technical support ever since before the game was officially launched in August 28th, 2012. To address this concern, ArenaNet is planning to roll out Google Authenticator, an authentication system specifically designed to help secure GW2 accounts from potential hackers’ assault.

Mike O’Brien, executive producer of Guild Wars and president of ArenaNet recently confirmed that the company is currently employing a proactive approach to deal with the ongoing problems on account intrusion and stealing. However, this is just a provisional implementation and partial resolution to the existing problem.

Knowing that hackers usually trawl for Guild Wars 2 accounts with weak or common passwords, the game developer has lately decided to create a blacklist containing a group of passwords that are potentially vulnerable. GW2 players will not be able to use any of the passwords included in the banned list. Anet regarded such security approach as Lockdown or GW2 LockDown.

So far, the implementation is good. According to Mr. O’Brien, the company sees a significant drop on the number of account hacking incidents since the blacklist was implemented. Before the password ban was employed, the incident rate was around 1.5 percent. After its application, the rate has plunged around 0.1 percent.

Password blacklisting is likely to be utilized until Anet officially rolls out the Google Authenticator, which according to Anet’s Co-founder, coming out in the next two weeks. The company is yet to disclose a definite date for its implementation.

The developer of Guild Wars 2 opted for the Google Authenticator app instead of its homegrown smartphone two-factor authentication software because Google’s system is tougher than ArenaNet’s, on most smartphone platforms. GW2 players are now looking forward to see how far the system can go by then.


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