The online gaming industry instantly became a massive hit since it was first introduced to the business world. It has also managed to thrive and gain stability over time. Having successfully tapped the engagement of a steadily growing audience base, it is not surprising how the online gaming industry is not showing any signs of slowing down. Tons of different game genres have emerged to penetrate every user preference across the globe. A number of sectors and associations have even worked together to conduct competitive gaming events offering millions of cash rewards for the winning participants.
However, as promising and enticing as it may look, keeping online gaming afloat also comes with specific issues that must be dealt with accordingly. One major issue is the risks of online gaming security. Arguably, online gaming security is perhaps one of the most crucial factors that are often overlooked by most gamers.
What are some of the most common security risks encountered in the online gaming environment?
As mentioned, there are several game genres that players can choose from depending on their preference. One of today’s most played genres in games is Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPG). This type of game enables players to create their own player avatars with distinct identities. The game allows its players to go on virtual adventures with different missions and side quests.
Although these games aim to provide never-ending enjoyment for its players, the experience it provides inevitably crosses the real world in terms of security and privacy. An example is the use of online trading and in-game purchase features included in most MMORPG games. These features allow players to participate in virtual item selling using real-world currency on online markets such as Amazon, Steam Market, and Flipkart. Some games even have their own in-game markets.
Unsuspecting gamers become vulnerable once they give out their personal information (credit card details, contact number) to complete an in-game purchase. It then gives individuals with criminal intent the opportunity to execute illegal activities. Poor security measures over the personal information of gamers leave their identities and privacy exposed to online scams.
Listed below are some tried-and-tested tips on how gamers can achieve a safer gaming experience at all times:
- Never use your personal information when creating an account.
- Never reveal your personal information to in-game players. This may pose a threat to your account security.
- Always use a strong password for all of your accounts. Make it complex but easy to remember.
- Never go online or play online games without an active antispyware, antivirus programs, and a trusty firewall operating in the background.
- Be cautious when opening emails that have files attached to it. Some viruses are concealed as downloadable files or links that when opened or clicked on can penetrate the security of unsuspecting victims.
- Always verify the authenticity of the files attached inside the email by using updated security software.
- Refrain from clicking links. This gives online fraud the opportunity to easily breach your account security
- Avoid downloading games from unknown and unauthorized websites as these could contain malware that can affect your computer’s defense against harmful viruses.
- Minimize the use of online markets. Aside from keeping you safe from online scammers, it will also keep you from making unnecessary purchases that exceed your budget!
- Always have your games and antispyware software patched to its latest version.
- Make it a habit to implement parental control in all the devices and computers that you use. This is especially essential for parents. Set parental control settings, specify guidelines on what websites they can visit, and limit the amount of time they spend playing online games. More importantly, make sure to keep children from accessing the market feature of the game they are playing.
PLAYING ONLINE GAMES AT ITS FINEST
The online gaming world is a wonderful environment where people can escape from the stresses and drama in the real-world. It allows players to become the person they want them to be even for a brief period of time. On the other hand, this imaginary world is also a breeding ground for online crimes that take advantage of unsuspecting individuals to endanger user privacy and security. Following the guidelines mentioned above is paramount to lessen the risks of being scammed.
Be vigilant. Be responsible enough, and limit engagements with fellow players especially while participating in online games. After all, a secure and positive online gaming experience starts within every player.