Is Blizzard Watching Its 4 Million WOW Subscribers?

Posted on October 19, 2005

Blizzard's incredibly successful World of Warcraft game recently passed the 4 million subscriber mark. Gamespot says WOW has 1 million subscribers just in North America. However, there is some concern now from some gamers that the WOW software might be watching them. GamesFirst points to a Rootkit post that describes the possible privacy invasion.

A recent posting on suggests that Blizzard installs software that watches the personal information of people playing their game. The software is designed to hunt for cheat-ware, but reads the title headings of any window open, regardless of its relation to WoW. The poster reports that he, "watched the (program) sniff down the email addresses of people I was communicating with on MSN, (and) the URL of several websites that I had open at the time."

Kotaku reports that program is called "Warden Client" and that it "the program runs every 15 seconds. The warden can read the window text in the title bar of every window. However, these ain't windows related to WoW, but any ol' program running on your computer."

Some bloggers are saying the program is an anti-cheating tool from Blizzard Entertainment that checks users computers for cheating programs. A Wikipedia entry on Warden software has more details.

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