ARK: Survival Evolved

ARK: Survival Evolved

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TheEye Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:09pm
About BattlEye and Privacy
(For those who are not aware, I'm the BE dev - feel free to check my post history to confirm.)


Hey ARK community,

After reading your feedback about BattlEye in general and its EULA for over a week I decided to clarify a few things here.

First of all, BattlEye by design is very invasive and it has to be so that it's able to fully do its job. This is reflected in its EULA, which is intentionally formulated in a very direct, unambiguous and non-misleading way, so the user can quickly understand what's going on and isn't lost in pages of text. Ultimately it's just trying to be very honest.

Yes, BattlEye has to be able to scan all memory (RAM) and all game- and system-related files on disk. However, this does not mean that BE is looking through your personal files, credit card details or other such information and sends them to our servers. I want to clearly emphasize that we don't do this. Everything that BE does is aimed at blocking and detecting hacks and reporting your personal information or otherwise spying on you clearly serves no purpose in that context. If you are worried I would still suggest that you don't have any programs/processes containing sensitive information open while playing on BE servers, simply because BE "might" accidentally touch it during its scans (remember that all active processes are part of the memory). That includes things like process and window names.

Yes, BattlEye absolutely can identify hack code patterns in memory and report information about them to our servers. It can also theoretically send executable files (e.g. .exe or .dll files) to our servers which were previously identified by other scans. But this is very rarely done if ever. It has happened in the past, which is what this reddit post (created by a well-known hacker) that many of you have seen was all about. It succeeded in creating lots of drama, but the bottom line is that BE never reported any sensitive information but only hack-related executable code/files. In fact, generally any halfway effective anti-cheat solution has the capability to do the same. So if you are running suspicious code while playing online games expect it to be reported in some way. I'm not saying that this is or good or bad, but it can be necessary from time to time for an anti-cheat to properly do its job.

There was also another post created by the same hacker talking about BE supposedly permanently banning players for false positives or poor detections. While I can't go into too many details without revealing too much to the bad guys, the problem with these claims is that they simply aren't true. Yes, false positives can happen and did happen in the past, but usually they were identified and corrected very quickly as all bans are regularly checked. But no, we definitely never banned for legitimate software like Mumble or memory patterns in your web browser. I could talk more about what we are doing and why, but it would probably slightly spoil the "fun" those people constantly have when being forced to deal with BE. :)

That being said, I admit that there should be more clarifications in the EULA and/or the BE Launcher and this is something that will be added in the future. We want people to trust BE because we believe that it is a trustable system that is working in the interest of honest players. We will also add an uninstall option as well as a way to make BE not annoy you every single time (when using the default launch option) in case you don't want to install it. :) The BE Launcher in general should become more user-friendly.

We hear your concerns and are really sorry about this bumpy release.

Thanks for reading! :)


Addendum:
BattlEye is neither like a virus, rootkit or gets into your system without noticing. These are false claims that are mostly coming from hackers trying to give BE a bad name (like those reddit posts which contain more exaggerations and lies than truth). BE explicitly asks you before installing. It also only runs while the game is running (with BE enabled), so technically there isn't any need to really uninstall it, although we will provide that in the future. Currently you can uninstall it simply by running "sc delete BEService" in a command prompt with administrative privileges.


Update - March 5:
As promised, the BE Launcher and EULA have now been updated and an uninstall option has been added to Steam.
Last edited by TheEye; Mar 6, 2016 @ 9:05am
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Showing 1-15 of 1,283 comments
Please no, Not BE, I have a horrible history with BE not responding to my Emails and banning me for no reason without any of their software installed
makior72 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:20pm 
Would battle eye detect a macro that simply spams the E button as a hack / cheat?
Strider112344 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:23pm 
Originally posted by ミ★ ckc | Dillpickle1 ★彡:
Please no, Not BE, I have a horrible history with BE not responding to my Emails and banning me for no reason without any of their software installed

^ LOL

I have a previous drama with BE myself but not going to go into it.

Anyone who wishes hackers be gone and has any understanding of how software works welcomes BE to ARK :)
Strider112344 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:23pm 
Originally posted by makior72:
Would battle eye detect a macro that simply spams the E button as a hack / cheat?

No is the very simple answer
Strider112344 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:25pm 
@ TheEye

For the people claiming BE does nothing blah blah blah...

Care to give an approx number of BE related bans when it comes to ARK?
22Habu22 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:25pm 
Hey, thanks for the thread. It helps me understand how it works, but doesn't end my concerns
Last edited by 22Habu22; Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:31pm
PBandjellyfish Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:27pm 
Originally posted by ミ★ ckc | Dillpickle1 ★彡:
Please no, Not BE, I have a horrible history with BE not responding to my Emails and banning me for no reason without any of their software installed
So....you are not using BE and it bans you?
Please explain.
Strider112344 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:28pm 
Originally posted by PBandjellyfish:
Originally posted by ミ★ ckc | Dillpickle1 ★彡:
Please no, Not BE, I have a horrible history with BE not responding to my Emails and banning me for no reason without any of their software installed
So....you are not using BE and it bans you?
Please explain.

He is joking.

We see so many posts saying that they are banned but have never used BE, Or they were banned for a macro etc etc to try playing innocent
22Habu22 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:30pm 
Originally posted by makior72:
Would battle eye detect a macro that simply spams the E button as a hack / cheat?
It would detect it, yes. BUT it won't ban u, as TRH has explained
Originally posted by Strider:
Originally posted by PBandjellyfish:
So....you are not using BE and it bans you?
Please explain.

He is joking.

We see so many posts saying that they are banned but have never used BE, Or they were banned for a macro etc etc to try playing innocent

Excuse me? I'd gladly love to tell you. I simply was playing on a BE server as a admin. However I had graphic drivers issues and decided to reformat my main SSD. Few weeks later after reinstalling everything I reinstalled Arma II and all my mods and decided to go back on the server I played. Upon joining the server the game stated I was banned.

My only intercation with a hack is someone spawning in a AA gun and sitting in it

You do not believe me? I simply do not care for your belifes. You can be iggnorant. I sent two emails roughly 2 years ago and I have to recived a reply.
Last edited by ミ★ ckc | Dillpickle1 ★彡; Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:33pm
Strider112344 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:35pm 
Originally posted by ミ★ ckc | Dillpickle1 ★彡:
Originally posted by Strider:

He is joking.

We see so many posts saying that they are banned but have never used BE, Or they were banned for a macro etc etc to try playing innocent

Excuse me? I'd gladly love to tell you. I simply was playing on a BE server as a admin. However I had graphic drivers issues and decided to reformat my main SSD. Few weeks later after reinstalling everything I reinstalled Arma II and all my mods and decided to go back on the server I played. Upon joining the server the game stated I was banned.

You do not believe me? I simply do not care for your belifes. You can be iggnorant. I sent two emails roughly 2 years ago and I have to recived a reply

Never said I didn't believe anything but came across quite sarcastic.

If I had lost my games for no reason I would of sent more than 2 emails :/

What was the error message?

Sure it wasn't a ban from the server owner?
Originally posted by Strider:
Originally posted by ミ★ ckc | Dillpickle1 ★彡:

Excuse me? I'd gladly love to tell you. I simply was playing on a BE server as a admin. However I had graphic drivers issues and decided to reformat my main SSD. Few weeks later after reinstalling everything I reinstalled Arma II and all my mods and decided to go back on the server I played. Upon joining the server the game stated I was banned.

You do not believe me? I simply do not care for your belifes. You can be iggnorant. I sent two emails roughly 2 years ago and I have to recived a reply

Never said I didn't believe anything but came across quite sarcastic.

If I had lost my games for no reason I would of sent more than 2 emails :/

What was the error message?

Sure it wasn't a ban from the server owner?

Like I said its been about 2 years since I have tried playing.

I was banned from every BE server
TheRightHand  [developer] Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:45pm 
We're also in contact with him every single day, being updated on signatures/detections, what is being detected and how; additionally we work with him in making sure that new BE clients are well tested and that existing errors/bugs are being resolved between releases.

It's been an incredibly open and productive few weeks. We know there are still people with reservations and concerns, and still folks encountering some issues with BE itself, but we are working really hard to resolve them. The fortunate thing about the system is that with the help of the developers, we've been able to very quickly find issues as they arrive and solve them.

I know there are a number of people who have reservations still; hopefully over time we can reassure you that we're just here to protect our game, and that neither us nor the BE folks care about the pictures of your cats on that external harddrive ;)

- The Right Hand
Last edited by TheRightHand; Feb 20, 2016 @ 4:16pm
vic3363 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:56pm 
I appreciate the Response and consideration by Wildcard and Battleye. I had just about lost faith with the MEGA thread burying that is an inherent part of constant merging.

Regardless, I am glad to hear some adjustments and improvements are being worked on. I hope that we can improve the overall concerns and system to be much more trustworthy in appearance at least. I've updated my review to seek this post out as well, and hope to update as changes are rolled out.

Thanks.
Strider112344 Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:56pm 
Originally posted by TheRightHand:
We're also in contact with him ever single day, being updated on signatures/detections, what is being detected and how; additionally we work with him in making sure that new BE clients are well tested and that existing errors/bugs are being resolved between releases.

It's been an incredibly open and productive few weeks. We know there are still people with reservations and concerns, and still folks encountering some issues with BE itself, but we are working really hard to resolve them. The fortunate thing about the system is that with the help of the developers, we've been able to very quickly find issues as they arrive and solve them.

I know there are a number of people who have reservations still; hopefully over time we can reassure you that we're just here to protect our game, and that neither us nor the BE folks care about the pictures of your cats on that external harddrive ;)

- The Right Hand

TRH

Are there any approx figures of BE related bans on ARK?
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Date Posted: Feb 20, 2016 @ 3:09pm
Posts: 1,283