Microsoft is banning Halo 4 pirates from Xbox Live

Microsoft has started banning users from Xbox Live who have pirated the leaked Halo 4. This doesn't come as a surprise considering it's obviously illegal and Microsoft did the same when Halo 3 leaked online.

Users on Reddit first reported that Microsoft's Live Enforcement team is sending out emails to pirates stating that they have been permanently banned from Xbox Live due to "illegitimate prerelease title play".

In a statement to EuroGamer, Microsoft said,

We are aware of isolated cases in which Halo 4 content has been propped on the web and are working closely with our security teams and law enforcement to address the situation immediately. Consumers should be aware that piracy is illegal and we take vigorous action against illegal activity related to our products and services. Playing pirated copies of games, such as Halo 4, is a violation of the Xbox Live Terms of Use and will result in enforcement action, such as account and console bans.

No matter how eager you're to play Halo 4, it really isn't worth the risk of a console ban as Microsoft is known for its strict rulings and it's highly unlikely that you'll be unbanned. Halo 4 will be officially released on November 6th.

Source: EuroGamer, Reddit Images: Halo Waypoint, Reddit

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Microsoft still issues bans for people playing games that have broken embargo.

I'm not sure what the policy is after the ban is issued, but Forza 3's embargo was broken by an unnamed Australian store. In the process of working out who/how/why etc, we became aware of a number of people who received bans for it.

Also, when we got games given to us in advance (I received Reach 4 days before release) I got told not to put it in the tray until release day because it would get my console and accounts banned.

Microsoft really don't **** around with this stuff.

soldier1st said,
Corporate greed and high prices are the problem. Rich people don't help either.

Or maybe it's just cheapskates who don't want to pay for anything? Who knows.

I wonder, these Halo 4 pirates' xbox Live accounts banned by console (by bricking it, so online is no longer possible), or IP address or how?

Can't you just start up a new Live account ?

Alley Cat said,
I wonder, these Halo 4 pirates' xbox Live accounts banned by console (by bricking it, so online is no longer possible), or IP address or how?

Can't you just start up a new Live account ?

The box is banned from live.

I wonder, these Halo 4 pirates' xbox Live accounts banned by console (by bricking it, so online is no longer possible), or IP address or how?

Can't you just start up a new Live account ?

microsoft ban means push more console sales... people are really masochist to buy live, to buy their console many times (due failures, unjustified bans, etc).

Not really worth it the whole hassle, since i got my console banned i moved to ps3 and never looked back got the best games, best free online experience and optional suscription that give me free stuff.

My banned xbox? its there maybe i RGH and get everything for free and have fun with it. microsoft enforcement have banned so many people i know without given a single reason the worse its that they dont deal with xbox live account they want the whole console.

In extreme cases they ban the xbox live account but they dont refund you the anual suscription to live, they dont give you a reason, they dont care, in the EULA its explicit that its their right to do it if they want to.... With such extreme measures i cant find it acceptable.

Pirates should be punished but stealing user rights, digital credits and crippling a console its a abuse.

eilegz said,

Pirates should be punished but stealing user rights, digital credits and crippling a console its a abuse.

No it isn't. Thieves with no respect for the law should lose all of that. In fact the console should short-circuit and brick itself as far as I'm concerned.

Why should banned pirates get a refund for their subscription? If I start a fight in a concert and thrown out by security am I supposed to get my ticket cost refunded too? Typical spoiled, entitled gamer mentality.

eilegz said,

Pirates should be punished but stealing user rights, digital credits and crippling a console its a abuse.



The rules and T&C state this will happen, so it's their own fault. Don't be a thief and they'll have no problem.

Lord Method Man said,

No it isn't. Thieves with no respect for the law should lose all of that. In fact the console should short-circuit and brick itself as far as I'm concerned.

Why should banned pirates get a refund for their subscription? If I start a fight in a concert and thrown out by security am I supposed to get my ticket cost refunded too? Typical spoiled, entitled gamer mentality.

sorry but this its just like steam detect that i have pirated a game and steam lock my account and ban my pc so i cant use what i bought anymore and my pc cant play games.... if this its not legit stealing i dont know what it is....

Microsoft have so advance tech to distinguish between pirates and non pirates that whatever they say its 100% correct right? but then they could not do a more proactive way like make identified pirates have a LABELED pirate TAG on the gamertag which its more useful and also not only microsoft everyone knows that this guy its a cheater hacker and pirate and would not want to play with him.... But guess what they do what they do and enforce it because its profitable to steal credits and make people buy new consoles.... at least people without common sense.

microsoft enforcement never attend false positives (there are a lot) they are even one time that people got banned and everyone was complaining and kotaku even have a coverage of it.... their EULA it have so many things that its just abusive do you know that they could ban you if you access live from a place that its not live supported or try to buy things using a different zone or region....

eilegz said,

sorry but this its just like steam detect that i have pirated a game and steam lock my account and ban my pc so i cant use what i bought anymore and my pc cant play games.... if this its not legit stealing i dont know what it is....

Microsoft have so advance tech to distinguish between pirates and non pirates that whatever they say its 100% correct right? but then they could not do a more proactive way like make identified pirates have a LABELED pirate TAG on the gamertag which its more useful and also not only microsoft everyone knows that this guy its a cheater hacker and pirate and would not want to play with him.... But guess what they do what they do and enforce it because its profitable to steal credits and make people buy new consoles.... at least people without common sense.

microsoft enforcement never attend false positives (there are a lot) they are even one time that people got banned and everyone was complaining and kotaku even have a coverage of it.... their EULA it have so many things that its just abusive do you know that they could ban you if you access live from a place that its not live supported or try to buy things using a different zone or region....

It's NOT possible to legally have Halo 4 FOUR WEEKS early unless you were specifically given a copy.

But.... to run a leaked copy, you'd have to have a hacked Xbox, right? And using a hacked Xbox on XBL is already a ticking time bomb to get yourself banned, right? So the news title could just be Using a hacked Xbox on XBL will get you banned. Of course, if you have the intelligence to hack your Xbox, you'd think you already understood that concept.

AJerman said,
So the news title could just be Using a hacked Xbox on XBL will get you banned.

Not when that isn't what we are talking about.

nub said,
> ticking time bomb to get yourself banned, right?

Not if you're not an idiot

I should rephrase. Using a hacked Xbox on XBL with the hacks active is already a ticking time bomb. Which you would have to do to play a pirated copy of Halo 4.

So that's my point exactly. Unless you're an idiot, you would know that this would get you banned, regardless of what game it is. You can play any pirated games on XBL with hacks active and not get banned. Playing a game that isn't released is just making it even easier for them to find you faster.

So yeah, xstex, that's exactly what we're talking about, since you'd have to be using a hacked Xbox on XBL to play Halo 4. UNLESS you have a dual nand setup and played it offline, but they are detecting it was played and banning you even if you don't have your hack active when you get back on XBL. That would be talking about something different, but the article doesn't go that in detail.

Sounds like Microsoft got on it fast but im curious if the one who leaked it also got banned as well or some other action being taken for it.

Manarift said,
Sounds like Microsoft got on it fast but im curious if the one who leaked it also got banned as well or some other action being taken for it.

Likely why they have involved the law. The guy who leaked it likely isn't stupid enough to play online with it.

xstex said,

Likely why they have involved the law. The guy who leaked it likely isn't stupid enough to play online with it.

Very True though my hunch is that the DVD used has some sort of serial number or tracking like a UUID so finding out were it came from in the production or shipping would be easy

Manarift said,

Very True though my hunch is that the DVD used has some sort of serial number or tracking like a UUID so finding out were it came from in the production or shipping would be easy

True, that wouldn't surprise me.

Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?

SpyCatcher said,
Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?
What are they going to ban them from? This is them having their Xbox live account banned. There is no equivalent in the PC world.

SpyCatcher said,
Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?

Microsoft can't ban a users PC. It's much easier on Xbox due to being a closed platform.

SpyCatcher said,
Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?

They can still play games but not in xbox live. On the pc, I believe there was a time when they prevent people from getting certain updates. I'm not sure if they still do it.

SpyCatcher said,
Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?

lol clearly you do not understand what it means to be banned from xbox live. your xbox still works. you just can't play online.

SpyCatcher said,
Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?

Like many have said

BUT

What if new Windows 8 users start to use Microsoft Account instead of Local System accounts? Then in theory they could be banned....(their MAC address and/or their Microsoft Account)

pes2013 said,

Like many have said

BUT

What if new Windows 8 users start to use Microsoft Account instead of Local System accounts? Then in theory they could be banned....(their MAC address and/or their Microsoft Account)


All of you missed the clarity of the question but one, that said, What if the user purchased the game? Microsoft is being selective by not offering arbitration.

SpyCatcher said,
Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?

Because leaving unpatched PC's connected to the Internet is stupid. They end up riddled with viruses and become part of botnets. In the long run it actually does them less damage to let people using pirated copies of Windows and Office to download basic updates (they still won't get any updates that require genuine validation) than it does to refuse them updates.

SpyCatcher said,
Better question would be: If Microsoft is willing to banned XBox users over a game, why has Microsoft failed to banned users for pirated OS, Office, etc. software?

Don't worry, it's a new feature of Windows 8, since you can now log in using your Live ID

SpyCatcher said,


All of you missed the clarity of the question but one, that said, What if the user purchased the game? Microsoft is being selective by not offering arbitration.

It is impossible to have a legal copy of this game unless you are part of the press and they register their gamertags/consoles with Microsoft.

It's possible that Microsoft hasn't shipped a single disc for retail from the factory.

I'd be annoyed if i bought halo 4 and it arrived 2days early and i got banned.

Lets hope those people who play it 3 days before release don't get banned and just these pirates playing now get banned.

torrentthief said,
I'd be annoyed if i bought halo 4 and it arrived 2days early and i got banned.

Lets hope those people who play it 3 days before release don't get banned and just these pirates playing now get banned.

Interesting point, I've known many people to receive them early.

torrentthief said,
I'd be annoyed if i bought halo 4 and it arrived 2days early and i got banned.

Lets hope those people who play it 3 days before release don't get banned and just these pirates playing now get banned.

Well, that's not much of an issue considering the game doesn't come out for another 3 weeks, and probably hasn't even gotten round to entering the supply chain - so everyone who is playing it (outside of the press) has nearly certianly pirated it.

torrentthief said,
I'd be annoyed if i bought halo 4 and it arrived 2days early and i got banned.

Lets hope those people who play it 3 days before release don't get banned and just these pirates playing now get banned.

this is not possible. retailers can't ship yet.

torrentthief said,

I'd be annoyed if i bought halo 4 and it arrived 2days early and i got banned.

Lets hope those people who play it 3 days before release don't
get banned and just these pirates playing now get banned.


I'm sure that Microsoft's XBox piracy detection technologies can tell the difference between a
pirated copy of a popular game being played on a console with unauthorised mods, from a
genuine copy of the game being played on a console that hasn't been tampered with.

DJGM said,

I'm sure that Microsoft's XBox piracy detection technologies can tell the difference between a
pirated copy of a popular game being played on a console with unauthorised mods, from a
genuine copy of the game being played on a console that hasn't been tampered with.

They always been able to do that in the past, getting a retail game early has never been a problem.

DJGM said,

I'm sure that Microsoft's XBox piracy detection technologies can tell the difference between a
pirated copy of a popular game being played on a console with unauthorised mods, from a
genuine copy of the game being played on a console that hasn't been tampered with.

Not true. If so everybody with a modded console would be banned.

WinMunkee said,
If the copy is legit, people would be fine. But this is pirated so..

Yep, which is why the title was pirates in the title.

WinMunkee said,

A lot of commenters would still get it confused.

If a commenter is too lazy to read correctly it isn't my problem.

wasd- said,
Who the fu** connects online with HALO 4 copy almost 4 weeks early?

"Two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

wasd- said,
Who the fu** connects online with HALO 4 copy almost 4 weeks early?

Seriously! That was my first thought when the story about the Halo leak hit. I think it may even be a genius scheme by Microsoft to sell more Xbox units. haha.

wasd- said,
Who the fu** connects online with HALO 4 copy almost 4 weeks early?

apparently its not even that. if you play the game offline it will store Halo 4 files on the Xbox and when you connect online playing ANY other game, those personalized Halo 4 files will be uploaded to Xbox Live, also resulting in a ban.
So to everyone, you must play Halo 4 on a 100% offline box only.

wasd- said,
Who the fu** connects online with HALO 4 copy almost 4 weeks early?

People with trial accounts ?

Duddo if it's still possible but back in the days i was playing Halo cheaters were all using trial accounts.