Before I get into the post, if you'd like some context, please visit the original thread where Mike O'Brien had officially released a statement regarding the Gaile Grey hack months ago.
If you can't be bothered, I will give a brief summary. A well known troll in the Guild Wars 1 PvP community was able to manipulate the support team into giving him access to a GM's account. He then used the account to manipulate the game and directly affect the players over a period of time due to the slow response from the support and moderation team. Keep in mind that not only was the hacker given complete access to Gaile's account he was completely able to change the email and personal information under the account. Instances done in this way generally do not notify the user of the breach. The only way for the victim to know they have been breached by an unauthorized user is when they attempt to log on the account or other people noticing odd behavior from the account.
While Mike had previously stated going further personal information cannot be used to attain access to accounts - that is further from the truth and there have been many breaches on personal accounts. At that time they had received training to prevent moderators to fall prey to these breaches. However, they have left the general population un-secure and not held to the same standards. As a result, loyal players from the Guild Wars 1 & 2 community are at tremendous risk and their items, character progression, and time investment wiped out. Unfortunately, another consequence is defamation, behavior on your account that would be considered irregular or out of character. This means the person can carry out a wide variety of scams or destroy your reputation associated with your account in a matter of hours. And while they may be able to intervene once the damage is done there is no changing everyone's perception, since they may not know that you were hacked ever. This can directly influence how others treat you in the game. However, I note Guild Wars 2 has a huge player base, so while that may not be the case entirely for that particular game, the Guild Wars 1 player base is much smaller and players are much more familiar with each other and certain names.
Moving on, a tainted name in Guild Wars 1 is damning as word travels fast and your account may be black listed from participating with the remaining player base in most instances. It does also have the potential to impact your Guild Wars 2 image. The damage done entirely depends on how long the person has access to your account. While you may play regularly not everybody in the world follows that. Casual players or people who do not log on as often are at the greatest risk. That does not mean that the average active player is not as well but these hackings most often go unnoticed for some time.
I have some high end examples in which I expect the support team to explain or Mike to officially respond in regards to these incidents. The incompetence when considering the support staff is alarming. Your personal information, accounts, and assets are at risk and anybody with free time and small amounts of information on you may gain access to your account by attempting to coerce support into giving them just that. These are not sophisticated methods by any means. And to be fair anybody could carry this out with a little word play and knowing little information of your victim. This is not done by any methods that one would suspect. In all of these cases it was not done by keylogging or using a program to monitor your pc or key strokes. It was done by people with free time and the knowledge of particular assets on your account that they desire or your "reputation" within said game.
It is important for people to note that if they gain access to your Guild Wars 1 account they can also be given access to your Guild Wars 2 account just as easily. Not to mention having the information completely changed, which as previously stated would delay your time getting back into the account since the abundance of support tickets in circulation. It takes the staff time to investigate the fake requests and the legit requests. And somehow even with this investigation, fake requests are often deemed as legit requests. While you may report your account as hacked it may take weeks to months to gain complete access to your account due to the degree of manipulation and methods used by the person who took the account. The more time the person has to mess with your account the less likely you are to be whole. Mind you in the Guild Wars 1 game if you get hacked, they steal your items, and delete your characters there is no way for them to restore any of this information even thought it was not your fault you were compromised. This tool, per the previous Gaile thead, has not been available since 2012. In cases recently I've seen a high end account get taken and have everything deleted on his Guild Wars 1 and 2 account due to the incompetence of the support staff and he is unable to be completely restored whole. He lost exclusive items that are unobtainable and items that were given to him from competing in old events that Guild Wars held. So again this is serious for people who are collectors and have nostalgic assets or progression in their possession. While they were able to restore/rollback his Guild Wars 2 account because of the time allotted, if you are gone for an extended period of time they may be unable to do so if somebody has access to your account for a long time.
So let's get into the reference material. Legitimate cases and scenarios that have happened, are happening, and will probably happen again unless this is addressed.
Reference 1: Gaile Incident
Reference 2: Three Pounds Hack
Leader from Rebel Rising: Hexen can vouch and so can a hand full of other people.
While I cannot post pictures of this currently because the support team will be investigating this and can confirm in this thread Jackie's account has been compromised Hexen from rawr can verify this if you message him on Guild Wars 2. The information is currently sensitive; however, is legitimate and will be deemed so shortly. If you are not aware who Three Pounds is she was a 10+ time monthly automated/ and 2-3 $100,000 tournament winners from the team Rebel Rising [rawr]. Her account is associated with arguably one of the top 5 best teams in the game and even to this day that teams legacy has achieved more than any other team in the Guild Wars 1 community. This team was known for creating rawr spike, a defensive spike meta that created an unbeatable American power house. The player who gained access to her account did so with the intentions of getting auto designated in Rebel Rising [rawr] in an effort to take the guild for himself. He would have also planned to boot the original team and taint it's legacy. An account of this stature further proves that no Guild Wars or Guild Wars 2 account is currently safe with consideration for how absent minded the support team is. All of your hard work and dedication thrown away in an instant because the support team handed over your account to a poser.
Reference 3: Motoko Kai
(First two pictures reference Motoko's Hacker scamming a victim out of an item/guild. (Worth a lot! 300-500Arm)
Next two pictures reference motoko's achievements, exclusive items, and item/guilds. (worth a lot! 1,500 +arms)
Motoko Kai's account was hacked on the Guild Wars 1 servers and his account was/is also considered a high tier account. He had competed competitively and participated in exclusive Guild Wars events that awarded content. This content that only a select few possess and that less than a handful are in circulation. This means particular items that were stolen from his account were worth substantial currency; however, it was worth more to him than currency since it was an event he won and had his name branded on the item and an npc named after him. This item allowed him to appear in game as this character. Now it is in the hands of the hacker who coerced the support team to give him the account. His in game characters and further items were deleted and the names he had were relocated to another account (Another problem with support taking weeks to fix the issue - the hacker has control of the account for more than 24 hours and can take advantage of the name reservation rule). Mind you he had character progression of 11 years worth of on and off time. He had beat the game several times on many of these characters. And further Motoko was and still is regarded as one of the most trustworthy people in the game. The person who took Motoko's account then also shortly after scammed and stole a large item in the guild wars community, which then led to defamation and a serious question on Motoko's character. Due to the supports inability to investigate or allot much time into searching into his inquery he was largely defenseless against these accusations since the person went on a spree of misconduct within the game. After a thorough investigation myself I concluded he was innocent once the support staff had FINALLY given him access to his own account, so he could prove his account was stripped clean. His Guild Wars 2 account was also destroyed despite claims by Guild Wars team that you could not get access to Guild Wars 2 accounts from Guild Wars 1 accounts anymore. Motoko has considered legal action and still has those thoughts in mind depending on the response by the support staff or Mike himself. The item that was taken from him was worth about 1500 armbraces on the market but is considered invaluable due to the one of a kind status. This does not include the countless items that were one of a kind rarities valued at over thousands of armbraces. I only put it into terms of monetary value to show it was a lot of currency and had to be gained over time and not something that average player has on hand. Regarding back to GW1 to GW2 not relating to each other that has largely been debunked and now I await a reply from Mike regarding yet again a serious lapse of judgement when considering training methods with the support staff.
To put in perspective how serious these crimes are consider this: Coercing the support staff to give an account that is not yours is not only theft, it is identity theft and fraud. So serious that when Lynie stole Gaile's account they reported it to authorities; however, if it's your account good luck put simply they don't care about security, your personal information, or your accounts. Unless otherwise stated and they get much more serious about protection of accounts I'd say the hackings will still continue. And by the way there are more we know about and largely a crap ton we don't. It's hard for the average player base to know how many accounts the support staff has wrongfully handed over but in all cases it has involved serious consequences for the community or the victim.
So, I implore you Mike respond to this thread put us at ease and properly compensate the victims for the negligence, progression lost, and items lost due to your team!