Blizzard Brings Down the Banhammer for Botting

Another big wave of Diablo III account closures for botters

Blizzard has closed another "several thousand" accounts, that they deemed were using bots and other third-party programs within Diablo III. The official news details some info about it, and multiple posts on the Technical Support Forum have showed up, with people asking why their accounts have been closed.

Blizzard takes botting seriously in all their current online games, and usually does "waves" of bans like this, instead of just one at a time. That way, they can round up a large number of accounts that were using a certain type of program, and then ban them all at once without warning.

Jump past the break for the official announcement, and reactions.

The official announcement gives details about the bans, and some replies from Lylirra about the process:

We've recently issued account bans to several thousand Diablo III players who were found to be using botting programs while playing. In addition to undermining the spirit of fair play, botting, hacking, and other forms of cheating can also cause technical problems with the game as well as contribute to performance issues with the service. To learn more about our exploitation policy for Diablo III and how it may affect your gameplay, please visit our official support site.

As always, maintaining a stable, safe, and enjoyable online environment for legitimate players is very important to us, and we'll be continuing to keep watch on and take action as needed. In the meantime, if you wish to report the possible use of botting programs to Blizzard, please see this thread for more information. (We will also be adding the ability for players to report this kind of behavior directly through the game client in a future patch.)

For questions regarding account actions, please refer to Account Administration.
Posted by: ActChill

I think we are 9 months to late on that.

This isn't our first rodeo. We have been actively monitoring for exploitative behavior since the game launched and taking action as needed. We haven't been very vocal about that process (though we have made a few announcements for larger ban waves in the past), but that's something we'll be working to change and improve upon going forward.
How does one justify if he/she is botting? I mean, I could play for 12 hours for weeks not saying that would be a good thing but its possible so I am just guessing I would eventually get a ban hammer dropped on my head?

While I'm not about to reveal how we identify exploitative behavior in Diablo III (and understandably so), "playing a lot" is not criteria enough to merit an account action for botting.
If you have received an account action and have any questions about it, be sure to check out and follow the instructions provided here:

The steps included the article are your best course of action.

In one of the threads on the Technical Support Forums about this, someone who had been banned also received some details from a blue poster:

You should have received or shortly be receiving an email with details of the violation and terms of the action, dYw.
Posted by: dYw

Still waiting on that email. This is rather frustrating, doesn't blizzard know its holiday season?

It should be sent within the next 24 hours. If you'd prefer, I can clarify what the ban was for you in this thread.
Posted by: dYw

It should be sent within the next 24 hours. If you'd prefer, I can clarify what the ban was for you in this thread.

You can clarify it here, I'd like to clear this up as soon as possible.

Unapproved Third Party Software
A third party program is any file or program that is used in addition to the game to gain an unfair advantage. These programs may increase movement speed or teleport heroes from one place to another beyond what is allowed by game design. It also includes any programs that obtain information from the game that is not normally available to the regular player or that transmit or modify any of the game files.

Cheat Programs ("Hacks")
We take action against accounts using hacks when a hero on the account is identified using a hack program. Hacks provide benefits normally not achievable in the game. Such benefits may include: increased speed, teleportation, or running through walls.

Automation Programs ("Bots")
We take action against accounts using automation programs or bots when one or more heroes on the account are identified using a bot to achieve automation.
Posted by: dYw

Well thanks for the obvious. Where should I file my complaint? Obviously not making any progress on the forums.

There's no specific avenue for complaints that we enforce our exploitation policy, but if you believe we've done so incorrectly, you'll want to submit a ticket to our Account Administration department.
Posted by: dYw

Thanks Medearn, very frustrating though. So disappointed with this game and this company these days anyway. Blizzard took a real dive as far as Game Quality and Customer Service with these last 2 major game releases. I don't know whats going on over there but it's a real bummer for people like me who grew up with great Blizzard games such as Warcraft-War2BNE and Diablo 1-2.

It can be frustrating to lose your progress, but please understand our own frustration when illegitimate players damage the integrity of the game and the community with these types of actions. You understand fully the reasoning behind this account action and I wish you luck in your future endeavors.
Posted by: dYw

Uh, Blizzard profits off of people botting whether they like it or not. I lose money and something to do from blizzard banning my account under false pretenses. Not the same thing Medearn but thanks for at least trying to understand.

Sorry, but we care too much about the game to simply pocket money from botting game purchases and call it a day. We work hard and spend lots of time (and money) on ensuring the integrity of the game is kept intact, and that involves keeping this kind of behavior out of the game.

Making the case on the forums will not assist your dispute - the only way to make an appeal is via an online ticket. It looks like you've submitted one already, which is the right step. I do not expect your closure to be overturned given the overwhelming evidence that your account engaged in the illicit activity and that you were fully aware of the behavior you were committing to.

Again, I'm sorry you decided to engage in this behavior and were caught, but hopefully its a valuable lesson learned.

As seen in other online games, including Blizzard's own World of Warcraft, this is an ongoing process. With the lure of the Real Money Auction House, there is a constant interest from botters in trying to make a little money using these programs within Diablo III; we can expect to see more such ban waves in the future.
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