Months Later Valve Has Still Not Reset My Steam Password

Reader Con Seannery was randomly locked out of his Steam account one day and has been trying to get Valve’s attention for months. Will they ever respond?

Several months ago, I was prompted to log into my Steam account at start up. This is unusual because I have it set to log in automatically, but no big deal, I know the password. Or so I think.

Apparently, the password that has worked for this account with around $200 of games on it (at least) is no longer acceptable to the system.

I attempt to reset the password, only to find out that unfortunately, my Yahoo! account no longer accepts its password either, a different password than the Steam account. Hoping that the Steam password had not been reset, I attempt twice more to log in using different passwords which I may have used, but would have been unlikely.

On the third attempt, I am notified in a pop up box from Steam that the account is locked out. I then turn to the support at Steam’s site, submitting a ticket, as well as a few follow-ups to this ticket and a few emails to the support line from my personal email, rather than the built in trouble ticket submitting tool, in an attempt to reclaim my account. Several months later, I have yet to hear back from Valve regarding this issue. What should I do? Is it time for an EECB?

Yes, we suppose it is time for an EECB. Last time a reader wrote in with a Steam issue (He was being ignored as well) we asked for some EECB information and this is what the readers recommended:

Head Honcho: GabeN@valvesoftware.com

If he can’t be bothered, there’s a list of other contact information at the Valve website.

Good luck.

Comments

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  1. Silversmok3 says:

    Forgive the bluntness of the question, but is the OP really named Con Seannery?

  2. everfade says:

    Valve could at least pretend that they are taking this seriously. I mean c’mon, where are their manners?

    • bender123 says:

      @everfade:

      They are taking it seriously, just fire the orange portal at an appropriate surface and the blue portal exits in the CEOs office. This is the standard way of handling complaints for them…much better than the old GLADOS system that continuously berated me.

  3. tc4b says:

    Wait, tell me if I’m reading this wrong, but if he can’t even log into the e-mail account associated with the Steam account, how can he be sure they haven’t connected him through that? Granted, they SHOULD get in touch with his through whatever account he’s mailing to them NOW, but maybe they’re blindly sticking to the one associated with his name in their database.

    Doesn’t make their behavior acceptable in any case, just speculating on what exact kind of retardation they’re experiencing.

    • ionerox says:

      @tc4b: It’s common for a company to assume that you continue to use the same email unless you change it. Think of all the trouble that would be caused if companies (or your bank) accepted an email that wasn’t already associated with your account as a valid request to reset a password.

      OP’s first step, when faced with the inability to get into his Yahoo account, should have been to reset his Yahoo password and used the nifty emailed password reset link from Valve. However, if he is now trying to resolve this using his Yahoo email and such- Valve sucks. If he’s using some other email account, I wouldn’t expect Valve to respond to the requests.

      • Jim says:

        @ionerox: Yes, this must be standard procedure. I lost a password a long time ago for The Sims and Maxis site, so now I can’t get to the .edu email I used (duh), can’t get the password, and can’t re-register because all my numbers are already in their system.

        I tried a million times to contact them but they all just replied with speech bubbles containing icons and things like “dee mee numi mau mau doh?”

      • Con Seannery is apparently an ADMIN... says:

        @ionerox: I understand that unfortunate truth, but seeing as the answers on my Yahoo are different from how I set them, someone has tinkered with it. They at the very least should have the courtesy to email me telling me I’m full of crap.

  4. InThrees says:

    This is why I don’t use Steam.

    Sure, it sounds nice, sure, there are some good deals, and sure, it means I would get to be even more of an internet-enabled hermit, but…

    It’s still just a fancy DRM party, and DRM breaks. See how this DRM breaks? It broke, and Con is out $200+ until Valve/Steam can be bothered to fix his issue.

    No thanks. I don’t want to pay for something that can then be taken away from me / denied me.

    • dreamsneverend says:

      @InThrees: Steam has worked FLAWLESSLY for me and while I am not a fan of most DRM, it has made every purchase I’ve made from them extremely portable. I have the client on my desktop and laptop and whichever I want to play my stuff on I just log into my account. It downloads whatever software needed to play to game from casual stuff like Puzzle Quest to Left 4 Dead.

    • alstein says:

      @InThrees:

      There are legit competitors to steam, such as Impulse and Gamersgate.

      Each of them have their exclusives though.

      Thankfully they’re all free- so DD wars won’t be as bad as console wars- outside of the Steam Monopolist Force

    • EllenRose says:

      @InThrees: Which is why I have no intention of using cloud computing of ANY sort – game, business, creative, whatever. I want everything to stay where I can get hold of it, no Mumbai in the middle.

      • sn1per420 says:

        @EllenRose: Valve is based in Washington state, so you’d have to live somewhere in China, Russia, or Nepal for Mumbai to be in the middle…

  5. 67alecto says:

    Consider it from valve’s point of view

    Person entered the wrong password enough times to lock the account.

    Person requested password reset info sent to the email address they had on file. Link supplied in that email has not been used.

    Person sending email from an address not associated with the account is asking for a new password.

    Yeah, I’d ignore that one too.

    • SynMonger says:

      @67alecto: Valve also has a complete lack of recourse if your e-mail is inaccessible. How about a customer service number to call and have it reset? Verify the billing info and name, and off you go. I doubt some random person will be able to spout off your name, billing address, and the last four of the card last used on the account.

      • Con Seannery is apparently an ADMIN... says:

        @SynMonger: Or at least have a canned response to say that I was full of crap and would never get it back. Anything’s better than NOTHING.

  6. parkavery says:

    He’s probably already tried this and I hate to be Captain Obvious, but have you tried calling Valve?

    425-889-9642

    The Valve website says this isn’t a support line, but this is more of a complaint at this point, so…

    • SynMonger says:

      @parkavery: Yes, it seems to have moved past support into the land of “FIX YOUR INADEQUATE TOOLS.”

      There really does need to be some way to contact valve outside the ticket system.

    • JediJohn82 says:

      @parkavery:

      I hate companies who’s websites have features such as:

      -Online Chat…where the representative cannot actually do anything except maybe tell you to call such and such number.

      -Contact Forms or Email address…that you either get an automated response, no response, or a response that suggests that they didn’t even bother to read your message.

      If your going to offer online support then you better damn well support it!

  7. Rebecca Brown says:

    I’ve only heard bad things about Valve. And my only experience with them was terrible. A game I wanted (Silent Hill: Homecoming) was released exclusively through Steam for PC. It was supposed to come out in, um, September. It came out for consoles, but not for Valve.

    They wouldn’t answer emails or give out any information. Konami answered my emails and was polite, telling me that they couldn’t tell me exactly what the holdup was. That annoyed me, but at least they replied.

    When it finally did come out (after Halloween, if I remember correctly), the listed specifications were wrong, so when I bought the game, it wouldn’t run even though my computer supposedly complied.

    I’ll never use them again.

  8. durkzilla says:

    I think you nailed it on the head here, but Valve should respond to the person with a generic response like, “Sorry, to prevent account hijacking we can’t issue a new password to you via this email address since it isn’t the on listed on the account.”

    Then a phone call to verify personal information should be able to solve this quickly enough.

  9. RanChan03 says:

    Gabe, yea he never responds to his e-mails there’s no point in e-mailoing him

  10. fatcop says:

    Survey says: Yes

  11. Michael Schwager says:

    It’s not valves responsibility to remember your password.

    It’s not valves responsibility to remember the password of the e-mail account you registered for Steam on.

    I’d ignore a password reset request from an e-mail address that doesn’t match the account name in question too. Especially if the request doesn’t provide any details about the account to prove it’s yours.

    I’m sure though, that once Valve gets wind of what’s going on, the issue will be resolved and he will be able to get back into his account.

    I’ve never had a single problem with Steam purchases. Well, I did have one. Crysis did not run on my machine. An email with a screen shot of the problem later, I had all my money refunded. Valve is one of the few companies that really do care about it’s customers, unlike other major gaming companies who are just in it for the money.

  12. dmuth says:

    I find it troubling that 3 invalid logins will lock an account on Valve’s system.

    This could be used by anyone to lock out the account of someone they did not like.

  13. Knippschild says:

    This sounds like a simple case of the OP forgetting his passwords. As for the Yahoo password – that doesn’t sound good. The fact that you have two passworded accounts that both no longer work, you should probably look into any kind of malware that might be installed on your computer, namely keyloggers.

    Also, the “This account is now locked” is not Valve being some nefarious company trying to steal your l33t g@m3s. This is standard procedure: if an account has x bad login attempts, that account is unavailable for y minutes. This is to prevent brute force attacks from being practical.

    Because you get billed for buying games, you should look into having them verify your identity based on your credit card and billing address.

    I don’t know what else to tell you.

    • Xmar says:
    • Xmar says:

      Looks like my browser ate my comment…
      I agree with knippschild.

      You need to make sure you machine is clean asap. From another computer you also might want to check to see if any other of your accounts have been compromised.

    • Preyfar says:

      @Knippschild: Sounds to me like his account got compromised, as well as his password to his e-mail. Not merely forgetting the information. If he could get Yahoo to recover his account for him he should be able to recover things.

      I’ve, unfortunately, had to help people deal with this before. Yahoo is generally decent to work with on e-mail recovery.

    • Watcher95 says:

      @Knippschild:

      I wonder if the OP forgot his Yahoo account info and whoever has it has found his steam account info within.

      Valve rocks BTW

    • Alessar says:

      @Knippschild: No, it sounds like a simple case of a user’s account being stolen. Probably some keylogger virus grabbed his steam info and his yahoo email address and password and then changed them both. At least he got it locked (?) by trying to login.

      In the end, Steam is another form of DRM and its unacceptable to me for this reason. If I buy a game, the only thing I should ever have to do is turn on my computer and click the icon. I should not need an internet connection (aside from online play) or a hardware signature validation.

  14. Carolyn Gabriel says:

    Am I the only one thinking that this is a classic account hack/hijack? Sounds like he might’ve picked up a trojan somewhere along the line and now someone’s got their hands on $200 worth of Steam games.

    • Preyfar says:

      @Carolyn Gabriel: Doesn’t have to be a Trojan per se. Could have been akin to the “Sarah Palin hack” where people compromised her account by deducing the answer to her “secret” question. There’s a number of ways to get into it.

      • Con Seannery is apparently an ADMIN... says:

        @Preyfar: That’s what I suspect happened, and the Steam issue was an unfortunate coincidence that otherwise would be quickly and easily resolved.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Happened to me too…2 emails and about a week- I figured they were big so it might take a bit- and voila- password reset, no issues, no problems.

    You can always find an exception to the rule- imho and many others, Steam works great- I was very happy with their quick response- maybe this guy is the exception to the rule?

  16. Anonymous says:

    i am having a problem where I can’t log into the steam client, but I can log in to the website. I also arn’t reseiving reset e-mails, though i am pretty sure I am using the right one.

  17. jake7294 says:

    @ cynical_bastard You really did say “irregardles” didn’t you?

  18. Joshua Kupsch says:

    I’m sorry, but if you don’t have access to the email account associated with your Steam login, I can’t blame Valve if they assume you are trying to hijack your own account. Their response on these matters is typically 2-3 weeks, so this instance seems exceptional. The only way to prove your ownership of the account at this point would be to provide the original CD Key used to create the account, or the credit card used to buy the first game. And if someone was able to guess/brute your Steam password AND your Yahoo mail password, maybe it’s time to start using better passwords?

    • Skankingmike says:

      @Joshua Kupsch: EXACTLY!

      OMG VALVE LOCKED ME OUT BUT I DON”T HAVE ACCESS TO MY OLD EMAIL!!!!!

      Which is why you should keep your accounts updated steam lets you change your email address, mine is.

      And I’ve had to ask valve for my password 3 times

    • Con Seannery is apparently an ADMIN... says:

      @Joshua Kupsch: It’s not that they didn’t let me back in. It’s that I was COMPLETELY IGNORED. At least fire off a canned response that they can’t help me.

  19. discounteggroll says:

    it took valve a day and a half to reset my password (this was a little over 2 weeks ago, on a weekend no less).

    they did a good job in my book, although I have heard some horror stories. You are probably better off submitting a photo of your ticket # along with the CD key # from the jewel case.

  20. Anonymous says:

    There is a very specific way to contact Valve support, and sending emails is not it. Every time someone has a problem with Valve/Steam support, it is because they are not following the proper procedure.

    Follow the instructions at the following URL:
    https://support.steampowered.com/kb_article.php?s=e5f8cbb74eecd0c779e6e1731ad541a9&ref=1223-QROC-4460#instructions

    Do not update your ticket. I repeat, do not update your ticket. Updating moves your ticket to the back of the line, which is likely why you haven’t been contacted yet.

    I’m not trying to be rude, but this information is readily available at the steampowered forums. Had you simply looked there and asked what to do, you’d have your problem resolved by now.

  21. Lucid003 says:

    This is a typical case of the user not following procedure.

    Follow the instructions here: [support.steampowered.com]

    DO NOT UPDATE YOUR TICKET: Updating your ticket resets its position to the back of the line. If you’ve been updating your ticket, no wonder you haven’t received a reply.

    Also, Valve Support does not receive emails. The only way to contact them is via the support system. Sending emails will get you nowhere.

    I don’t mean to be rude, but it needs to be pointed out that this is a user issue and not a Valve issue. Had you bothered to check out any of the information readily available at the Steampowered forums, you’d have your issue resolved by now.

    Valve Support works extremely well as long as you follow the instructions. I’ve yet to see a complaint about Valve Support that wasn’t the user’s fault. Follow the instructions and you’ll get your account back. Take better measures to protect your account security if you don’t want it to get hijacked again.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Did you get a 12 digit support ticket ID when you submitted your support ticket? If you didn’t then you didn’t complete all the steps and your ticket will not have been sent, if it wasn’t sent, it’s hard for them to actually help you. If you did get one, I would post it here if I were you, at the very least someone from VALVe might see it and be able to follow up on it.

  23. ScottRose says:

    @Con Seannery:

    DID YOU CHECK YOUR CAPS LOCK?

    Or did you perhaps piss off the password gnomes?

  24. cmdrsass says:

    I had a similar problem with Valve early on – they told me I was out of luck and had to buy all the games again. I told them to screw and haven’t sent them a dime.

    • Con Seannery is apparently an ADMIN... says:

      @cmdrsass: I’d be okay with that, as long as it was some sort of a reply. Don’t just leave me hangin’.

  25. remedy77 says:

    I have played counter-strike over 8 or 9 years and it unforunatley coverted to steam some years ago. They have a huge problem with kids stealing accounts so your chances seem low to recover. The fact your locked out of your email that is linked to steam is the killer. The only way ive heard of people getting their account back is by taking a picture of their Half-life/Counter-strike CD Key with or whatever steam game you bought if not over the steam client. Other then them not being able to email the account linked i think you gotta except your loses.

  26. jeffs3rd says:

    This definitely sounds like a hack job. It’s too much of a coincidence that not only was his Steam password wrong when he didn’t change it, but also that his Yahoo! password was wrong when he didn’t change that.

    Con, the password reset for steam is probably being sent to the yahoo address which, if you still cannot get into, means that you are probably SOL. Yahoo should have been the first place you went.

    If you can access your yahoo account now, then it’s steam’s fault for not rectifying the issue. The article doesn’t mention whether or not you were eventually able to get into your yahoo account.

    There probably isn’t much valve can do if both your steam and yahoo passwords were hacked, until you can get back into your yahoo account. Like someone above said, I wouldn’t want valve to reset my password if someone who was pretending to be me emailed them from a different address asking for a password change.

  27. Evan Walker says:

    When I got locked out of my account I called thier number they list and left a voicemail. About an hour later I had a member of thier support staff call me, verify my Ident with credit card numbers on file, and get my account back.

  28. m-p{3} says:

    Have you received a ticket number by email when you created a request?

    If not, you didn’t fully completed the support procedure.

    Also, do not update the ticket except when necessary. You will end back at the end of the queue if you do so.

  29. Satanicat says:

    If you eventually get a hold of someone, it should just be a simple issue of verifying some credit card statements and things of that nature to get it sorted out. That’s quite a bit of patience to have though, ouch.

  30. Chris Yantis says:

    I had the exact same thing happen to me last year. I created a ticket just like you did, and, they took a week to get back to me. In the response e-mail (which was apparently spam)they informed me that they had reset my password and had me follow a link, where I was prompted to create a new password. That taught me to password share ever again!

  31. broncobiker says:

    Valve can make a really great game, and steam is an almost perfect example of GOOD Digital rights management in the pc-gaming industry, though I do have to say I have been less than impressed on the customer service.

    The time that it takes for a member of the support staff to get back to you is straight-up unacceptable. I have had to wait 4 and 5 days at a time to get answers back on even simple questions, often times trying to figure it out myself, or getting responses back from non-valve websites before they themselves to, even on questions related to steam itself!

  32. DynamicBits says:

    Good luck, Con Seannery, good luck. If you think you have it bad, try running a server for any of Valve’s games using YOUR hardware, YOUR bandwidth, YOUR time trying work around the bugs, and the money you’ve spent to buy the game. It pretty much comes down to “We expect you to run the servers (since we’re too cheap to do it ourselves), but don’t bother us with any problems or glaring bugs you find. If we notice a problem that takes out 30% of the servers worldwide, we’ll get it fixed within a couple weeks.”

    Steam support is worthless. Getting no response would have been better than what they have told me in the past. They won’t be getting any more of my money.

  33. eXo says:

    I had my account hijacked last monday. I submitted a ticket with the exact info the requested, and on thursday they sent me a new password and reset my contact email back to my main account.

    I found a rootkit level trojan on my computer while waiting for the response, so I am actually glad I caught the steam account when I did – who knows what other crap that trojan could have transmitted if I hadn’t caught it.