There are many online retailers who sell discounted codes for not just PC games, but also for various consoles. Some of them, however, have far better reputations than others, and, of these, G2A is certainly one of the more notable examples of sites which has a more than ‘dubious’ reputation. This, despite there not being any actual proof of any dishonesty in where they obtain their codes. Well, until now…
In a report via Eurogamer, despite years of denial, G2A has finally admitted that they have sold stolen codes on their website!
For the last three years, G2A has undergone a pretty significant switch in its policy regarding where they source their game codes. The pressure did, however, build so high that last Summer they declared themselves ‘open’ for an external audit and added that they could compensate any developer whose codes had been stolen by paying them 10-times the amount they were sold for! If, of course, it could be proven that the codes were stolen.
Well, it seems that this pledge has finally come back to bite them as it has been found that 198 keys sold for ‘Factorio’ were indeed stolen! As such, G2A has confirmed that it will be paying Wube Software (the game’s developer) $39,600 as compensation.
In a statement regarding this issue, G2A has been surprisingly open and honest. A point we will return to shortly. In it, however, the company has said:
“When we launched this offer, we wanted to send a clear message to the gaming community that fraud hurts all parties. As we spell out in this blog, fraud directly hurts individuals who buy illegitimate keys, it hurts gaming developers and it ultimately hurts G2A because we are forced – as the transaction facilitator – to cover costs related to the sale.
We wanted to amplify that message and capture people’s attention, so pledged to compensate developers 10 times the value of any chargeback fees they incurred, despite the fact that we had nothing to with the illegal acquisition of these keys.
The gaming developer community has our solidarity and sympathies on this issue, and we want to continue building bridges. With our main point being made, about the seriousness of fraud in the industry, from now on we will compensate developers the full value of any chargeback fees they incurred for any keys sold via G2A Marketplace, if they are able to prove they were illegitimate.”
With the total being 192, it’s honestly much lower than we daresay many expected. As for the source of where these stolen codes came from, however, that does remain a mystery. It usually occurs when someone working at one of the ‘wholesalers’ (as detailed in the video above) decides to attempt to make a little money on the side. It can, however, also happen when game codes are bulk purchased on stolen credit card information (a factor that is one of the biggest criticisms of these types of websites).
In a nutshell though, while this might be the first instance, we again highlight that this is (so far) this is the only confirmed instance. One would, therefore, hope that this does (to an extend) help exonerate G2A’s reputation and current policy stance. It may, however, just be the tip of a significantly more massive iceberg!
What do you think? – Let us know in the comments!