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"Beginning today, we are expanding global SMS Protect access to pre-paid phones."

Chris Kerr, News Editor

November 18, 2022

1 Min Read

Activision Blizzard's controversial SMS Protect system has been tweaked to support users on pre-paid phone plans.

The system was deployed earlier this year to bring two-factor authentication to titles including Overwatch 2 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II.

The move sparked controversy, however, because players would be required to use SMS Protrct if they wanted to play those titles – but the system only supported phone numbers from major carriers, and not those tied to a pre-paid plan.

Although Blizzard removed the need for SMS Protect for those Overwatch 2 players with previously connected Battle.net accounts, anybody seeking to create a new account or link an existing account to Battle.net still needed to use the system.

Now, the company has confirmed that SMS Protect and Battle.net will be accepting pre-paid phone plans globally. The change will be implemented via a new update that's due to roll out on November 18 (yep – that's today), and will cover players dipping into both Overwatch 2 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II.

"Beginning today, we are expanding global SMS Protect access to pre-paid phones. We are excited to welcome more players to Overwatch 2 while continuing our commitment to combating disruptive behavior and protecting the integrity of the player experience," said the company in a statement. "This update may take several hours to roll out completely, and we can’t wait to see you in-game."

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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