Xbox Live Safety
Stay safe while gaming online.
Written by spunout
Fact checked by experts and reviewed by young people.
In this section
- Setting up your Xbox profile
- Managing your privacy settings
- Muting players
- Blocking gamers on Xbox Live
Xbox Live allows you to connect with friends, family as well as millions of gamers from all over the world. Whether you annihilate classmates in Call Of Duty, or team up to cause some mayhem in Grand Theft Auto, the social element of Xbox Live adds an extra level of fun to your gaming experience but it can also leave you a little vulnerable.
Although the vast majority of gamers are respectful and just want to have a good time, there are a minority that manipulate the openness of the online gaming community to abuse and offend people. It is useful to be aware of the ways to protect yourself from this sinister side to gaming and ensure that you have the friendliest, best and most relaxing time possible, free of hassle, ragers and trolls.
Setting up your Xbox profile
Once you set up your Xbox Live profile, your name and avatar are visible for all to see. Keeping this in mind and throwing a good dash of common sense into the mix, be careful what you choose to be your GamerTag. Try to pick a random GamerTag that doesn’t resemble your real name or include information about where you live. Last thing you want is some irate Xbox gamer who you trashed in Fifa showing up at your front door! Keep the tag cryptic.
Managing your privacy settings
Keep an eye on your privacy settings on Xbox Live to ensure that your information is as safe as can be. If you are registered on Xbox Live as an adult then by default your profile is public, meaning that everyone can see your friends, your game clips, and whether you are online and available to play.
You can change your privacy settings at any point by going to the Xbox Home, hitting the menu button on your controller, accessing the Settings menu and Privacy and online safety.
If somebody says something sexist, racist, homophobic or offensive when you are playing them on Xbox Live you can click the mute button. This means that you can continue to play your game in peace and the offender can continue to blabber on, unaware that you have chosen to mute them. Muting is the easiest way to allow you to play away to your heart’s content and not worry about listening to a tirade of abuse over your headphones or through the chat feature. If you have experienced anything like this while playing Xbox Live you’ll know how it can really dampen your mood, words can hurt and it’s perfectly ok not to listen if something bothers you, as one seasoned gamer figured out. Don’t hesitate to hit mute!
Blocking gamers on Xbox Live
If someone is bothering you on XboxLive and you’d prefer not to play them again, you have the option of blocking them. To block a player you need to choose their gamer tag while they are online and select block. If the person you want to block isn’t online, you can search for them in the Profile app and block them that way.
Once you’ve blocked someone on Xbox Live they will not be able to send you any messages unless you send them a message first.
It is important to note that in order to block someone on your Friend’s list you need to remove their gamertag from your list first.
To block a player you need to head to the Home screen and select your profile tile. Go into Recent players and choose the gamertag that you want to block and select Block.
If a user is consistently bothering you and engaging in behaviour that you feel is inappropriate and offensive, Xbox Live allows you to report their profile. All you have to do is select their profile and select “File Complaint”. Next you need to select what you would like to complain about. Is their profile picture inappropriate? Click on the Profile option. If a player is harassing or threatening you through chat or the Xbox Live messenger select Text and Voice Communications to lodge your complaint. If another Xbox Live user has tampered with a game somehow or with Xbox Live itself you can also notify Microsoft by selecting Tampering.
First things first, make sure that you never give out your login ID, password or credit card number to anyone. Even if you are contacted from someone claiming to be from Microsoft asking you for this information. Gaming networks may get in touch with you and ask you to reset your password but they will never ask you for it directly. Check out our tips about making your account as secure as possible.
Need more information?
We are here to answer your questions and talk through your options. Our online chat service is for 16 to 25 year olds and is available Monday to Friday, 4pm to 8pm. Chat to us now about your situation.