Grand Theft Auto V has had a rather successful launch of PC. The game performs rather well and IGN even claimed it to be “the best way to play GTA 5.” Unfortunately, a lot of customers have been facing problems with account security, and Rockstar’s response has been anything but professional.
A common issue players have been encountering is the game closing with a message saying “you’re account has been logged in elsewhere”. Since the game needs Social Club to be played, this error kicks players out of the game with no warning. It’s actually happened to me in the middle of a mission, and I completely lost all the progress that I have made. The first logical solution to the problem is to try to change the password of the account. Unfortunately, experienced the same error after making my password more unique and secure. Due to the time my account was supposedly “logged in elsewhere,” it brings the question of whether this is actually a technical issue rather than a security issue. Regardless, it’s still a very major bug that prevents people from playing the game.
While the aforementioned error may not actually be attributed to security, there are definitely some other major red flags about the way Rockstar is protecting social club accounts. Firstly, when someone logs into certain portions of the Social Club site, their username and password is displayed in the URL as plain-text.
The site does use HTTPS, so the information is still somewhat secure as far as remote hackers trying to peek at your data. However, it is still completely visible to anyone who has access to the browsing history of the computer.
Note that this image is taken from a Redditor, but I've also personally witnessed the same thing happening
The last, but certainly not least important problem is how easy it is to hijack a Social Club account. The only thing a “hacker” would need in order to take complete control of the account is the password. Once they have this, they can easily change the email of the account without any additional security checks. The original account owner is informed of this change, but there is absolutely nothing they can do to stop it.
In an attempt to get their account back, the players who fell victim to the lack of security turned to Rockstar support. Unfortunately, this only leads to a pre-scripted line followed by being hung up on. GamerNexus followed up on the reports of being hung up on and they confirmed that this was not just a one time thing. They got connected with people who could hardly form sentences, and the call ultimately ended with them hanging up. They finally got connected with a more coherent person and this person told GamerNexus that it was standard procedure for a support representative to hang up on customers after reading a scripted statement.
There is a lot to take away from this whole situation. On one hand, you can easily blame the customer support for being incompetent. Keep in mind, however, that the support team likely isn’t actually Rockstar employees and Rockstar just outsourced them. You also shouldn’t forget that the poor security is what got us here in the first place. It’s plausible that Rockstar could implement better measures to protect accounts, but a new support system seems doubtful.