Blizzard facing class action suit over authenticators

By John Keefer, Nov 13, 2012 5:00pm PST

When your games are purchased by millions of people, you are bound to have some dissatisfied customers, some even willing to take you to court. Blizzard is staring down a class action suit that accuses the company of herding players to buy Battle.net authenticators instead of doing a better job of securing player information. The authenticators have brought in $26 million, according to the complaint.

Blizzard has shot back in a rather lengthy statement, saying the case is frivolous and without merit. In part:

"We want to reiterate that we take the security of our players' data very seriously, and we're fully committed to defending our network infrastructure. We also recognize that the cyber-threat landscape is always evolving, and we're constantly working to track the latest developments and make improvements to our defenses."

As to the claim about the forcing players to buy authenticators, Blizzard said:

"Considering that players are ultimately responsible for securing their own computers, and that the extra step required by the Authenticator is an added inconvenience during the log in process, we ultimately leave it up to the players to decide whether they want to add an Authenticator to their account. However, we always strongly encourage it, and we try to make it as easy as possible to do."

The suit mentions breaches to Blizzard's servers in May and August, and requests money damages and an order from the court to prevent Blizzard from requiring Battle.net accounts for non-MMO games.

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