Modern online games bring together thousands of people around the world in one environment. Players communicate with each other, complete tasks, fight enemies, and get experience points for this. For such a pleasure, how to rise in the ranking among the players you often have to pay – to buy not only improvements and other abilities. Besides, even to start playing, sometimes you need to buy a license or pay for a subscription.
Not only virtual opponents should the player be afraid of. One of the most common threats is the theft of a personal password, on which the authorization system of most games is based. Besides, your billing information is at risk. In this article, we will look at how scammers use your private information and how they violate players’ privacy. We’ll also determine what is PrivacyGuard and how similar solutions will help you protect your game accounts and personal data.
Why Fraudsters Hack Game Accounts
The theft of personal data occurs when hackers find weaknesses in the customers’ data protection system of a particular online game. When this happens, scammers can, by changing the data of the gamer’s account, for example, the user’s password, “capture” the account.
Thus, scammers can use the data of your game account and sometimes payment data, for various illegal purposes.
The most common way is to extort money. Most attacks are carried out on pumped accounts with a high level and full equipment. Anyone will be disappointed to lose an improved account, on which he spent a lot of time, effort, and resources. Fraudsters take advantage of this, and many gamers follow their lead – they are ready to pay a certain amount if only to return the game account.
The next goal that drives fraudsters is to collect their database of game accounts and sell them on DarkNet forums. Depending on the character and equipment level, many game accounts can cost from a few hundred to a thousand dollars. Moreover, this is a good income.
Finally, the third situation is to seize payment data through a game account. Most online games carry out their transactions, and payment data can be saved in player profiles. Besides, attacks are often made on the payment gateway of the game itself. Thus, Internet criminals take on another person’s identity and make purchases on the Internet or even take credits.
All these situations are very sad and are found on the Internet.
How Fraudsters Get Personal and Game Data
In addition to hacking game servers and certain gateways, fraudsters can also seize players’ data directly.
- Keyloggers. It is software that records user actions. To install a keylogger, scammers gain the trust of their victims. Besides, a message asking you to install the program may come from a friend whose account was hacked. These spyware programs steal not only payment data, but also game user accounts, for example, on Steam or Origin.
- Phishing. It is a common security threat not only in the gaming industry but also in the entire Internet space. Phishing sites are fake sites whose URLs are very similar to real ones. The user may not notice that he clicked on a phishing link and entered his contact or payment information. Also, when visiting such sites, malicious software may get to the user’s computer.
- Recovering a forgotten password. As a separate item, we need to highlight a way to get someone else’s password through the system for recovering a forgotten password. An attacker, using a specially crafted request to the system (or simply by sorting the answers to questions asked by the user to change the password), changes someone else’s password and enters the game using a new password known only to him.
- Malicious programs. To distribute them, scammers publish links on gaming forums, send messages, and distribute through file-sharing networks. Fraudsters also use web browser vulnerabilities to download malware when gamers visit gaming sites.
However, more often, attackers publish programs on the game forum with comments about how cool this mod is and what bonuses you can get.
Tips for Securing Yourself
- Configure the antivirus, firewall for a thorough check of any suspicious activity, and never turn them off.
- Regularly update the operating system and all programs with access to the network and only on official sites.
- Disable scripting in the mail client and browser. It blocks possible vulnerabilities.
- Use long passwords. It is better to make it from lowercase and uppercase letters and numbers or even special characters. Moreover, forget about auto-saving passwords.
- Change your passwords in games and inboxes every month. Be sure to change the password if you entered it in a computer club (there are keyloggers in many clubs), or if you found a virus on your computer.
- Do not install unofficial mods. You cannot be sure of what is contained in their code.
Security Solutions for Protecting Game Accounts
PrivacyGuard is an identity theft protection service that provides users with credit protection and other useful features. There are other solutions to the cybersecurity market, but this option is a leader in the industry. For gamers who are worried about the security of their accounts, it will also be very useful.
One of the main functions is to control your credit history. If you nevertheless became a victim of a fraudster and lost credit data, you can then track activity and block the card with this solution.
The solution to protecting against data theft differs from conventional antiviruses in that they can monitor the DarkNet. As mentioned earlier, many game account fraudsters resell on DarkNet forums, so by getting the support of such a program; you can quickly find a scammer and send a complaint.
Besides, such protection solutions scan the web pages you visit and filter the message flow in the mailbox to prevent phishing attempts.
By being attentive to your data and activities on the Internet and enlisting the support of a reliable theft protection service, you will ensure that you have the proper security you are capable of.
Game creators are also working to improve security by improving authorization systems and releasing new updates that close server vulnerabilities. Therefore, with collaboration, players and creators can resist online fraud.