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There are a lot of people who prefer to play virtual games on their PC or gaming consoles. One of the most popular gaming consoles right now is the Xbox as it can provide an ultimate experience to everyone who plays it.
As video games have increased in popularity over the years so has the popularity of online gaming.
Online gaming has absolutely exploded with many games on consoles now being free to download and play against people from all over the world! With this increase in online usage, more and more people are getting banned because they don’t act appropriately while gaming or violate the terms of service in other ways.
When those terms and conditions are violated or someone acts wrongly they will get a suspension or ban. These suspensions and bans range from only lasting a few days to being permanent and if you have a permanent ban you will no longer be able to access any of the online content via Xbox Live.
Obviously, you don’t want that or want to purchase an Xbox that is banned so knowing how to check if a console is banned is vitally important and that is what this article is all about.
There are a few different ways to check if an Xbox is banned but the easiest ways to check is either to try and sign in to Xbox Live or to enter the serial number on the Xbox Enforcement Page. If you are unable to log in to Xbox Live then there is an issue with the console or with the account that you are signing in with.
Using the enforcement page is as simple as choosing your device and entering the serial number into the box!
These are the two easiest ways to know if your Xbox has been banned or not. If you are purchasing an Xbox you can ask them for the serial number but the serial number could be altered so it is always a good idea to try and do a secondary check by attempting to log in to Xbox Live.
It is never a good idea to buy locally on Facebook or Craigslist unless the person is willing to let you check whether it is banned by going through both of these processes.
In the rest of this article, I will go into more detail about the different types of suspensions and bans as well as what could get an Xbox banned in the first place. You can also watch the video below if you prefer it to reading.
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All About Xbox Bans And Suspensions
Before we dive into what can cause your device to be banned it is important to know the different types of bans and suspensions that Xbox gives out and what the differences are between each type of ban/suspension.
As we all know if you are playing a video game online on Xbox you might sometimes trash talk with other online gamers or violate some of the code of conduct. Often simple trash-talking won’t get you banned but calling people names or making racist or sexist remarks likely will.
These violations could cause you to receive a variety of different punishments and bans but normally when you get banned for trash-talking or bullying Xbox support will issue a communications ban for a certain number of days.
Once the suspension period is over you can use the communication features again like via live chats, messages, or talking in games.
When it comes to community code of conduct violations and other unethical practices such as phishing, scamming, online fraud, or even a form of harassment, Microsoft will often come down on the person very harshly with a ban and sometimes even a permanent suspension/ban (depending on the enforcement history).
If you find yourself with a ban or suspension the first thing to realize is that there is a reason for it and it was likely your behavior. It is easy to blame other people for goading you into calling them names or trash-talking over voice chat but ultimately you are responsible for the way that you act while you are using Microsoft’s platform.
The second thing that you should consider is a way to avoid getting banned or suspended in the future. Rather than rant about how Microsoft is too soft or complain about how they banned you for doing something that other people have also done it is a better idea to fix what caused the ban so it doesn’t happen in the future.
If you always get caught in a back-and-forth trash-talking war then blocking all communication with people except friends is a good way to avoid doing that in the future and possibly getting banned.
Types Of Xbox Bans
There are two basic types of bans when it comes to the Xbox. There are also suspensions that are only temporary and the “communications ban” is technically one of them since it is temporary and not permanent. These two types of bans are:
- Xbox Live Device bans
- Game bans
Each of these is unique and means something different so we will go into more detail about each of them below.
Xbox Live device bans
When it comes to device bans these are not just issued for small infractions An Xbox Live device ban covers when a player repeatedly violates the code of conduct while playing on Xbox or is caught with a serious offense such as hacking or stealing accounts or account information.
With a device ban, you will not be able to access anything on Xbox Live and will lose all of your progress as well as any subscriptions or games that you have on your account.
The only way to get around this device ban is to buy an entirely new console and sell or give away the device that is banned. You could also just play local games on the console but losing the ability to play online is a huge blow for most people as a lot of their gaming time is spent with online gaming.
Reasons for device bans
A device (console) can be banned from Xbox Live due to several reasons. Some of them are described below:
- If the gamer is tampering with the console by any means whatsoever that is designed to modify the gameplay or allow you to hack the console to download pirated games or to install unauthorized software. If Microsoft discovers the hacked software on your console or an illegal game then your console will be banned.
- Practicing any type of online scam or fraud, such as account theft, phishing, or any other attempt to defraud the company or other Xbox players can cause your console to be banned.
- Repeatedly violating the terms and conditions or the code of conduct provided by Microsoft can lead to a ban. Many people believe that Microsoft employs the three-strike rule so if you have been communication banned three times in a year then you will get an account ban and once you get three account bans then they will ban your device. This is just a rumor and has not been officially announced by Microsoft but many people swear that it is true.
Game specific bans
This is the other type of ban that is related to game-specific security. It is quite obvious that game developers impose some specific security measures into their games that help them to keep their game safe from fraud or cheating. The policies and code of conduct for the game-specific ban are different than Xbox has.
The game developers include a different set of terms and conditions that will tell you the way you are expected to act when playing that specific game.
Since there are different terms and conditions for every game, there are different notifications for the user if they get banned from a specific game. The method of notification varies and depends upon the game developer.
How to check for a game-specific ban?
If you are unable to play a game on your Xbox then you should take a look at the manual of that specific game as that should tell you what will happen in the event of a game ban.
The user should get an idea from the specific game developer for the notification of the ban.
Commonly when you are banned from a game you will get a popup that will say that you are not able to log in to that game or it might straight up say that you have been banned. You can normally expect to receive an email to the email address you used when setting up the account as well.
How to check for Xbox Live device bans?
As mentioned earlier there are two basic ways to check for a device/console ban. Checking online on the Xbox enforcement page is relatively easy but can be gamed by someone giving you a fake serial number.
When logging into Xbox Live you will normally receive an error message. Depending on which console you are using you will receive the following error messages.
For Xbox 360:
This message lets you know that your device has been banned due to violations of the terms provided by Microsoft. If your screen has one of these messages then it is quite evident that your device has been banned.
For Xbox One:
Can You Check If An Xbox Is Stolen?
If you are purchasing a used Xbox but are concerned that it might be stolen you will of course want to check that before buying the console. But is there any way to actually check if an Xbox has been stolen?
Unfortunately as of now, there is no way to check and see whether a used Xbox has been stolen or not. Microsoft does not currently have a system in place to ban stolen consoles or anything like that either.
For an Xbox that has been stolen Microsoft recommends reporting it to your local police but beyond that, there is nothing that they do in regards to keeping track of Xbox consoles that have been reported stolen.
Now you might think that Microsoft should do more and ban all of the consoles that are reported stolen. However, not only would doing that requires a lot of time for their team to make sure that the console was actually stolen but it might turn into false reporting as well.
Can you imagine if a gamer were to claim that another gamer’s console had been stolen just so they could get them banned from playing online? It would be a real thing and those false reports would have real consequences.
Not only that but the Xbox enforcement team would then have to make sure that each report was real by checking it against local authorities etc. When you think about it it would be a massive undertaking and require a lot of time.
So that is why currently there is no way to check whether an Xbox has been stolen through Microsoft support.
Not only is there no way to check if an Xbox console has been stolen but there is no way to report that stolen console to Microsoft (for the same reasons). If your Xbox console has been stolen you should report it to your local authorities but Microsoft can’t (or won’t) do anything about it.
There are a variety of bans and suspensions that Xbox can issue to users when the user violates the code of conduct or some of Microsoft’s terms and conditions.
The easiest ways to check are to attempt to log in to your Xbox Live account and to check the serial number on the enforcement page.
For most people, logging in to an Xbox Live account is the easiest and quickest way to determine if the console has been banned. There are account bans on Xbox as well so if you are not able to login to the account on the console but you are able to on a computer then you know it is a console ban.
If you can’t login to the account on the console or on a computer then it is likely not a console ban but an account ban instead.
An account ban is still quite annoying but at least you only lose the things in your account rather than losing your entire console to online gaming.