Four Online Gaming Security Threats and How You Can Protect Yourself

While online gaming has revolutionized the video game world in many advantageous ways, there is a downside to playing games on the internet. Cybercriminals can potentially find ways of hacking and accessing your personal information. Here are four online gaming security threats and the corresponding ways in which you can protect yourself.

1. A Direct Attack Using Automated Scripts

By using automated scripts, cybercriminals can hack into your online accounts using credentials that they have stolen from another source. Many gamers use the same password for multiple platforms, but by doing so, hackers only need to get the information for one account in order to access all of your accounts.

You can protect yourself by ensuring you use different passwords for every site and making sure those passwords are robust. Never use an easily guessable password like 12345 of your date of birth. Always use a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters and numbers and symbols. You could also use a password manager that creates and assigns unique and secure passwords for each online site you use. Whether you are in Finland Pelaa Reactoonz (“playing Reactoonz,” which is a fun slot game featuring cute monsters), or in the US signing into an MMORPG, make sure you use robust passwords. You can then have peace of mind that your details are safe and sound.

2. Cross-site Scripting

Some older online platforms use non-secure methods for processing login data. By using a method known as cross-site scripting, hackers can intercept your login details on non-secure sites.

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While changing your password regularly is one way of hopefully avoiding hackers, it is highly recommended you simply stay away from any non-secure online platforms for playing games. Check the site’s security certificate to ensure it is legitimate. If you do not stay away from non-secure websites, you are leaving yourself open to hackers. It is not worth potentially exposing your personal details to criminals just for the sake of playing a game. Besides, if the game is on an untrustworthy site, you are sure to find a better game to play on a reputable and safe platform.

3. Malware Disguised as Games

Fooling people into downloading malware is one of the primary methods used by hackers to access and steal your personal data. One way in which cyber criminals do that is by disguising malware as video game links. Never download a game or expansion pack from an unofficial source. If you do, you are putting your computer’s security and your personal details at risk.

Malware disguised as video games often come in the form of phishing emails. These emails contain links to supposed games. When you click on the link, malware is downloaded and your device becomes infected. There are plenty of excellent online games you can safely play online, so there is no reason to trust a dodgy link that ends up causing significant harm.

4. Data Breaches That Target Gaming Sites

While you cannot stop data breaches that target gaming sites, you should be aware of the issue, and you can take some precautions to protect your details. Cybercriminals will often attempt to hack gaming platforms. If the publisher’s systems cannot defend against the attack, the hackers could access and steal anything from the source code of games to your personal information stored in your online account.

You can reduce the risk of being affected by a data breach by regularly changing your password. You should also research what security measures specific online gaming platforms utilize if you want to make certain that they are as secure as possible.

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About the author: Cory Weinberg

Cory Weinberg covers the intersection of tech and cities. That means digging into how startups and big tech companies are trying to reshape real estate, transportation, urban planning, and travel. Previously, he reported on Bay Area housing and commercial real estate for the San Francisco Business Times. He received a "best young journalist" award from the National Association of Real Estate Editors.

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