First-Ever Xbox Transparency Report Reveals Rise in Bot Bans

First-Ever Xbox Transparency Report Reveals Rise in Bot Bans

If you’ve had to deal with a wave of fake Xbox Live accounts lately, you’re far from alone. Microsoft has published its first-ever Xbox Transparency Report, and it’s now clear that the company either bans or cracks down on bots. The company claims to have issued more than 4.33 million “proactive actions” (i.e. taking action without user reports) against fake and compromised accounts in the first half of 2022. This represented 57 % of enforcement actions over the six-month period, and a nine-fold increase in the number of proactive efforts compared to the same period a year ago.

Microsoft previously spent most of its energy on the “responsive” app (responses to player reports) and took less action overall. The company issued 2.24 million reactive applications in the second half of 2021 and only 461,000 proactive measures. Other violations were relatively few and far between. “Adult” content only led to 199,000 proactive actions, while fraud, harassment and other abuse each resulted in less than 100,000 actions.

It won’t surprise you to learn that most of Microsoft’s 33.08 million user-initiated crackdowns focused on toxic players. Law enforcement was also dominated by reports of cheating and other misconduct (43%) and abusive communications (46%). Only 11% of enforcements were related to user-generated content, such as offensive nicknames and screenshots. Fortunately, there seem to be fewer incidents overall – Microsoft received 59.65 million reports in the last half of 2020.

Don’t count on winning the appeal if you think Microsoft made a mistake. Of more than 151,000 case calls during the period, only 6% (about 9,250) led to reinstatements.

You can expect a new Xbox Transparency Report every six months from now. There don’t seem to be any equivalent reports for Nintendo’s and Sony’s equivalent online services. Still, this may be good news if you’ve been wondering about Xbox Live issues and whether or not Microsoft takes bots seriously.

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