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Cheating Online Games by Greg Hoglund, Gary McGraw

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The WoW Warden Is Watching

As stated previously, six million people worldwide play WoW (usually about 500,000 at any one time). And, every single one of these players has granted Blizzard the right to scan his or her computer programs and memory—which Blizzard does.

The game client includes a component called the Warden that scans for an arbitrary list of things such as open processes, URLs, and so on, controlled at Blizzard’s discretion, and mails the information it finds back to Blizzard any time the game program is running. (Figure 1 shows sample content being sent back to Blizzard by the Warden as determined by a program we wrote called the Governor.) You can think of the many copies of the Warden as like six million copies of “legitimate ...

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