Gaming is popular and makes an easy target for cybercriminals
Gaming is super popular. Video games are obviously an inherent online universe and thus provide an endless opportunity for cybercriminals to target people – young and old – with their money-making schemes.
Some fraudsters are in it to groom future money mules, while others are out for payment cards.
Still other attackers are looking to harvest personal details to sell on the dark web.
Think that your name and email address are nothing a cybercriminal would be interested in? You assumed wrong. Dark web marketplaces are big business. Lists of emails, passwords, and usernames of ordinary people can be sold over and over again to use in phishing email campaigns.
If you are using your employer’s email address to buy games and setup user logins, you put your employer’s entire network at risk.
Here’s how to protect your gaming accounts
1. Be cautious in chats
Scammers can be very patient. They’re willing to dedicate a lot of time to building online relationships with gamers to earn the trust of their future victims. So don’t readily give away personal information – like hometown, school, pets’ names, and other common password hints.
When you’re new making friends online, it can be easy the overshare personal information. Remember even though some people they seem to be your friend. There are plenty of malicious people out there who think nothing of learning and personal details in using it to steal an online account.
2. Play over a secure connection
Online security begins at home (or wherever you play)
“Respondents also were not aware of the large volume of threats targeting their home networks,” says Comcast
3. Use strong passwords
After a Russian cyberattack compromised the US Department of the Treasury the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) recommended that strong passwords consist of 25 characters or more! If that’s too much to remember for every online account, then use a password vault to help you create strong and unique passwords to protect your games and apps like Steam and Discord.
4. Use two-factor (2FA) authentication or Multi-factor Authentication (MFA)
Gamer login credentials stolen in data breaches can be bought on the dark web. When you use another form of security like two-factor or multi-factor authentication it can stop hackers from brute force guessing at your password.
Using 2FA and MFA in conjunction with a password login increases online account security. Both Discord and Steam have 2FA available for all users.
- · Two-factor (2FA) authentication means – 2FA is the use of a second verification step – like responding to an SMS text message or email – to access an online account or hardware.
- · Multifactor Authentication (MFA) – Multifactor authentication is the same as 2FA except three or more steps are required.
Using an authenticator app like Google Authenticator is another good two-factor authentication protocol.
5. Beware of scams within games
6. Use a dedicated credit card for in-game purchases
Any online account can get breached this includes all eCommerce websites, rewards programs, and of course Internet-connected games use a single credit card for all in game purchases. This will limit your damages and how much work you must do to protect your money and secure your credit cards in the case of a data breach.
7. Avoid Third-Party App Stores
Buy from official sources like the Google Play Store, Apple Store, or from the game developer’s site. Scammers set up spoof websites or fake review sites to trick gamers into inputting their login credentials or making a fraudulent purchase.
8. Faceless devices need security updates too
The survey results from Comcast also found that 83 percent of respondents said that they would not know if a networked device with no screen – like a WiFi router – had been compromised. Compromised devices can mean a hacker has spied on your network traffic for months.
9. Protect your devices
The computers, smartphones, and tablets you use for gaming also need protection. A reliable antivirus blocks fraudulent websites and malware.
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