This is a friendly reminder that no one on or off Gaia should ever ask for your password. Gaia staff (forum assistants, moderators, administrators, etc.) will NEVER ask for your password for any reason. Anyone who claims to be part of Gaia's staff and does not have either a pink, green, brown, or an orange colored name is lying! For more information on how to spot and stop staff impersonation, click here.
Hacking: The act of accessing another user's account without authorization or profiting from items taken from a hacked account. Scamming: The act of promising valuables to attain other user's items dishonestly with get-rich-quick schemes or other trickery.
Both hacking and scamming are against the Terms of Service, and are punishable by being banned from Gaia Online.
Important Notice: The first thing that you as a user must remember is that you are solely responsible for keeping your account safe. Gaia has taken reasonable steps to verify your identity before granting you access to your account. It is up to you to keep your account information and password a secret. It is not the hacker's or scammer's fault that your account got hacked or you were scammed.
As mentioned before, Gaia takes steps to verify your identity before granting you access to your account. There are many things that you can do to make sure that you are the only one who is able to get into your account.
Password & Email: The first and foremost step is having a strong password and an active email. If your password were fall into the hands of a hacker, they could use your account to violate the Terms of Service and steal your hard-earned gold and items.
A strong password should have lower case letters, upper case letters, numbers, and characters (such as !,@,#,$,%,^, etc.). Having a strong password such as this will be a big help in protecting your account.
You should have an active email associated with your account so you can receive alerts and messages from Gaia. An active email will allow you to reset your password if you forget what it is.
Password Phishing Sites: Any site that is NOT Gaia and requests your username and password is a Password Phishing site. These sites come in various forms, including those which look exactly like Gaia. You can identify these sites by the URL and what it asks you. Any site that DOES NOT start with "www.gaiaonline.com" in the URL and looks like Gaia is a FAKE! Any other site that requests your Gaia username and password for any reason is a FAKE!
You can help protect your account by activating the "Security Warnings" account option. To access it, go to My Gaia > Account Settings: http://www.gaiaonline.com/account/
Scroll down and you will find this section:
The first one will show messages above your PMs when someone mentions passwords, etc.; it will give you a reminder not to give your password away. The second one will let you know when you've clicked on a link that will take you outside Gaia. This is especially helpful if you are not in the habit of checking links.
Many hackers and scammers use tinyurl.com to mask the links they're using, but some honest Gaians use it as well to make their links shorter. So how to know when a tinyurl.com link is legit? Tinyurl.com has a preview option that you can turn on or off which lets you see the real website address. You can then determine if you want to proceed or not.
Password Phishing Pop-Ups: Recently there has been a plague of pop-ups on Gaia requesting your username and password; however, it is rare to bump into one. These are Password Phishing pop-ups, and they are not a part of Gaia. You may get a pop-up asking for your password and username when you are in the forums, on a profile, or in a PM. NEVER put your password or username in the pop-up!
Trust:DO NOT trust anyone with your password at any time or for any reason. If someone asks you for your password for any reason at all, you should report them immediately. Gaia staff will NEVER ask for your password! DO NOT share your password with friends or family members.
There are many different kinds of Gaia Staff, and each has different responsibilities. Real staff members have colored usernames, and a descriptive title of their position under their usernames. Remember that Gaia Staff will NEVER ask for your password, and anyone who claims to be Gaia Staff and requests your password should be reported immediately.
Here is a list of the types of staff members, what color they are, and what they do.
Administrators: Leaders of the Community and Moderator teams. They are responsible for high-level administrative tasks, billing issues, and overseeing Gaia Moderators.
Omni Moderators: Responsible primarily for account issues, hacking and scamming cases, and special projects related to account security, site safety and moderator training.
Global Moderators: Responsible for Abuse and Harassment cases, and help oversee Terms of Service violations across the entire site. Global Moderators may have other special functions that are specific to a particular role.
Site Moderators: Responsible for specific forums on the site and handle Terms of Service Violations and thread move requests. These moderators also cover Gaia games, chat rooms, Towns, and other features of Gaia.
Forum Assistants: (formerly known as Helpers and Mod Assistants) Responsible for moving threads only in the forums they are assigned to. Moderator Assistants do not assist users with Terms of Service violations or other account issues.
Non-Player Characters (NPCs): A Non-Player Character (example: [NPC] Rina) is an account that is used to speak about important and fun topics, like quests and newsletters. Any persons posting with these accounts are Gaia Staff, but they do not help with Terms of Service violations or other account issues.
Artists, Developers and other staff: There are many other people who work hard to make Gaia awesome by creating new features, art, items and much more for you every day! These people have brown names and may post around the site but they do not help with Terms of Service violations or other account issues.
If you need to find or contact a moderator for assistance you can find them by clicking the "[View Forum Moderators]" link at the top of any forum you visit. The link will take you to a list of moderators who take care of that particular forum.