Players will no longer be able to preview the nick history of others. What do fans think about this?
Minecraft is a relatively old game. The title is more than 11 years old, so it’s safe to assume that most players have changed their nicknames at least once. The history of nicknames has always been in the game, and sites such as namemc.com, for example, let you preview it along with all the former skins of a given player.
The developers, in a recent post, informed fans that suspecting older nicknames will soon no longer be possible. What exactly will change?
What is being changed by Minecraft developers?
The ability to check former nicknames was particularly useful for server owners who wanted to make sure that the selected people had not been previously punished and that the nickname change had not been made to avoid consequences. Fans also used the option to check whether their old friends were still playing Minecraft.
In the past, fans could remove individual nicknames from their history if they contained any sensitive information. In such a case, all they had to do was send a message to Mojang for the game’s developers to take care of the matter.
However, the latest post informs that players will no longer be able to preview past nicknames.
On September 13th, we will be removing public access to Minecraft’s Username History API endpoint to improve player safety and data privacy.
The Username History API allows anyone to find the full username history of any other Minecraft account. We are removing public access to this information to better protect your privacy from bad actors and evil doers.
What impact will this API removal have on players?
This API removal may disrupt any third-party service that relies on pulling username history data. While this is an unfortunate side effect but keeping your information safe is important to us. That said, different services use this info in different ways. If your service uses the Names API, please prepare for how this removal will affect it.
Although the option to see users’ past nicknames is ostensibly harmless, there have been posts on the web saying that the ability has been used to take over inactive accounts – especially those with valuable content, such as unique nicknames or rare capes associated with a Minecon event.
Whether the change will ultimately affect the security of player accounts, which are now assigned to Microsoft accounts that offer two-step authentication, remains to be seen. For the moment, a sizable number of accounts sold on popular auction sites can still be found online.