For years now, the gaming industry across the world has witnessed continuous growth, not just in the number of players and gamers but also in the technological sophistication and enhanced user experience. This growth has however been punctuated by unending unfortunate stories of data breaches, identity theft, and cyber frauds perpetrated against gamers. In recent times, gamers have become easy targets for hackers and cybercriminals. Many accounts have been hacked with valuable resources stolen from the owners.
The frequency of these attacks, their scale, and success rate across the gaming industry point to two major factors: the hackers and cybercriminals have become increasingly sophisticated, deploying advanced computer programming and hacking software against gamers. The second and perhaps the most important factor is that while cybercriminals have grown smarter and incredibly sophisticated, gamers have lagged. Most gamers have unfortunately not taken appraisal of the prevalence of hackers and cybercriminals in the online gaming world. Neither have they considered themselves sufficiently threatened and vulnerable to take their online gaming security seriously.
This fact is borne out by the countless surveys which have consistently shown that most gamers are lax about their security. Most gamers use one password across multiple platforms and accounts. Meaning that a successful breach of one account would lead to the breach of others connected to the user. Resulting in large-scale identity theft and financial losses to gamers. Cyber security experts and researchers have consistently noted that most gamers do not know what two-factor authentication is and even less about using it.
With cybercriminals becoming increasingly sophisticated, adept, and subtle with their craft and gamers seemingly oblivious of the threats that they face, gamers are fishing in troubled waters. If this state of affairs continues, the gaming industry will, unfortunately, suffer more attacks, more data breaches, and more loss of privacy and resources. To forestall this download spiral where cybercriminals reign supreme, gamers need to, as a matter of necessity, up to their game. Take their security and privacy seriously and seek out cyber security tools to patch up their vulnerabilities and significantly reduce the rate and success of cyber-attacks against them.
To do the above and be safe, the first step is that gamers must recognize their vulnerabilities and acknowledge the fact that they make easy targets for hackers and cybercriminals. The recognition of the fact that their lax attitude towards cyber security makes them juicy targets. This will spur a cyber-security awakening and push them to identify threats facing them and take steps to protect themselves.
The first and most important step is for gamers to secure their account and personal information. This requires changing from the old habit of using one password across multiple accounts to creating different strong and complex passwords that are very difficult for hackers to guess. This is because the most common cyber-attack against gamers is credit stuffing which involves breaching passwords and using them to access gamers’ accounts to commit frauds. Beyond creating different passwords for different accounts, gamers should use two–factor authentication to harden their account and ensure that only they have access to their account.
Hardening your account and actively limiting who has access to it helps in protecting the data and sensitive personal information contained in them. Passwords and two-factor authentication will be useless and meaningless if after activating them a gamer goes online on video games to share sensitive personal information. Hence, the next step is to not divulge sensitive information online to anyone, especially strangers.
Cybercriminals are adept at subterfuge and pretense. They could pretend to be friends and appear to be legitimate gamers, only to gain your trust and get you to divulge personal information that will enable them to hack your account. Be careful and never reveal personal information. If hackers do not succeed in guessing your password and getting you to divulge your sensitive personal details, the next tool in their bag of illegality and scams is to launch malware attacks. They create links that urge you to click on them to get cheat codes, upgrades, or to protect your device from attack. Once you click on them, the link takes you to fake websites that ask you to put in your password, login details, and credit card information. These are scammers, do not fall for them.
Install cyber security and privacy apps such as Hoody. Hoody, a Bulletproof Privacy Network (BPN) can help you keep your privacy and security. When you use Hoody with your browser, each tab and websites gets its own IP, location, and new Fingerprints, keeping tracking impossible. The future-proof tech of Hoody Phantom Browsing™ outperforms even the most sophisticated and intrusive tracking methods.
In concluding this piece, one very important fact that we must note is that gamers are not giving their online gaming accounts and activities the cybersecurity attention it deserves. This needs to change to significantly reduce their vulnerabilities and headline-making data breaches.