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User account purges only impact "inactive" accounts, says Ubisoft

It takes some work (or lack thereof) for Ubisoft to wipe a user's account.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

July 25, 2023

2 Min Read
Splash art of various Ubisoft games such as Mario+Rabbids, Riders Republic, and Watch Dogs Legion.

Ubisoft has said that its recent account purges for users only affect those with "long periods of inactivity." 

Last week, a user made a now viral tweet showing that Ubisoft had contacted them about their account being under suspension, and later complete closure, in 30 days. The only way to prevent the account from being shut down entire was to cancel the closure. 

The policy itself isn't new for Ubisoft, and its terms of service (as spotted by Kotaku) say deletion would take place if an account was inactive in over six months. But it's since clarified on its website that accounts "with no PC purchases or active subscriptions tied to them" would be closed to comply with data protection laws. 

In the instance where an account has been wiped, a user would still have access to previously purchased games. Console players would lose their Ubisoft accounts, but not the games purchased on a specific system like the Nintendo Switch. 

What does it take for Ubisoft to delete an inactive account?

It's likely that other developers have the same policy, or something like it, for their handling of user accounts. In talking to Kotaku, Ubisoft goes out of its way to specifically state how it alerts users about their accounts closing and the specifics behind that decision.

"If the user tries to log in during the 30-day window," it wrote, "they will automatically receive a warning and a link to reactivate their account. Only inactive accounts that meet the criteria outlined are being deleted, and not before three emails are sent to the player within a 30-day period."

As far as what makes an account primed for closure, Ubisoft explained its criteria also includes that account's game library, activity since its creation, and whether that account's been logged into via third parties like Steam or PlayStation Network. All the criteria must be met before an account gets fully wiped.

The Steam mention creates some confusion, though. While the developer said PC users "[aren't] of this conversation," its support page said a closed account wouldn't be able to play games bought on Steam.

Similarly, how this affects DLC or other digital items (such as music or art book) is currently unclear.

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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