Blizzard Entertainment warned World of Warcraft players today to watch out for a Trojan horse that could infiltrate their accounts. This malware can apparently bypass the official authenticator that many WoW players use to safeguard their account.

"The Trojan acts in real time to do this by stealing both your account information and the authenticator password at the time you enter them," Blizzard employee 'Jurannok' said on

The official Blizzard authenticators provide a one-time numeric code through a mobile app or key fob that the user must input in order to log in. Jurannok said that both the mobile and key fob authenticators are vulnerable to the Trojan.

Blizzard has admitted in the past that accounts with authenticators have been hacked. They say that the chances of this happening are very slim, though. Most players with authenticators who were hacked in the past had heaps of malware on their system, thanks in part to unsafe file-sharing programs.

If your account has been recently compromised, Blizzard suggests running MSInfo and exporting that system information to a separate text file. The Trojan will usually appear in the Startup Program section of the file in one of two forms:
  • Disker rundll32.exe c:\users\name\appdata\local\temp\w_win.dll,dw Name-PC\Name Startup
  • Disker64 rundll32.exe c:\users\name\appdata\local\temp\w_64.dll,dw Name-PC\Name Startup
Blizzard doesn't currently have a solution for this Trojan short of reformatting your computer. They're still gathering information on the malware, though. Users with compromised computers can help this process along by sending the following information to Blizzard: your MSInfo text file, a list of WoW add-ons you recently installed and where you found them, a list of recently installed programs and where you found them, and the results of any security program scans you've run since noticing the Trojan.

Getting hacked always sucks but it's especially nerve-wracking for WoW players because of the hundreds of hours some have invested in their characters. Hackers could potentially strip these characters of all belongings and then delete them. The subscriber-only business model of the game means that someone who hacks your account will have access to your credit card information as well, unless you only pay through game cards.

If you do lose any characters or items, Blizzard's customer support can help you out. You can find the details on character and item restoration here. The company recommends that you report any losses as soon as you notice them. If you wait too long to report them, it's possible that Blizzard won't be able to help you recover your losses.

In addition to tracking down this latest threat to player accounts, Blizzard is developing a new World of Warcraft expansion. Warlords of Draenor, the fifth expansion for the MMORPG, raises the level cap to 100 and gives players a new planet to explore. The expansion is expected later in 2014.

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