Xbox Live Customer Service Proves The Key To Solving Hotmail Woes

Richard, whose wife had her Hotmail account swiped by a hacker, was able to get it back by calling Xbox Live customer service, of all people.

He writes:

Thanks so much posting, I hope it encourages some Hotmail users to up their security or switch over to another service.

I’m glad to say we got the account back a couple of days ago. Although we filled out the Identification validation forms, I think what actually got the ball moving was contacting Xbox Live customer service (the Hotmail account is tied to her gamertag via Windows Live ID) and escalating up to the second tier. We were able to verify identification via our credit card numbers and security questions asked by a real person. After that they locked all of the accounts (Windows Live, Hotmail, Xbox LIVE) and began an investigation.

My wife has changed her passwords, sent out apologies/ new contact info to everyone in her contacts, and closed the account. I think automated customer service has its place, but offering absolutely no phone service is frustrating.

Good to know that rarely-effective Xbox Lives CSRs can go beyond the call of duty every once in a while. Bravo.


Edit Your Comment

  1. Zat_XBSB says:

    I recall someone saying this in the source story.
    Oh, look, it was me.

  2. ryan_h says:

    why did they even bother calling support? when the same thing happened to me about a year ago, I just jumped on my 360, and changed the password right on there. bingo-bango

  3. Corporate_guy says:

    This has nothing to do with the security of hotmail. This woman clearly gave her password away somehow. By either typing it into a phishing site or getting infected with something that stole it.

    It doesn’t matter what email service she had. In fact, it appears because it was linked to her xbox live account she was able to regain ownership of the email account. I don’t think you can normally get a free email service to ever reset your account if someone else stole the password and changed it. As there is no way to identify the owner of a free account.

    She should be praising microsoft for doing something that would not be possible with any other free account. In addition closing the account does nothing since, again, she gave away the password. No one hacked microsoft. The hotmail account is secure if you don’t give your password away.

    Hell, she might have given her password away on xbox live in exchange for recon armor.

    • Nitrokart knows CPR and took that guy's wallet says:

      @Corporate_guy: I think you can associate a credit card with a Windows Live account just for this situation. Besides, Hotmail is still pretty insecure even without giving away your password to a phisher. After so many days of inactivity, your account is deactivated and then a few days after that, the username is put up for grabs. A hacker could swoop in, take that username and then get all that email which was intended for the original owner.

      This is why I use Gmail to grab my Hotmail email over POP and then delete it automatically.

    • D-Bo says:

      @Corporate_guy: Clearly gave it away by allowing it to be stolen? Interesting supposition…