Security isn’t on many people’s minds when gaming. And that’s exactly how people become vulnerable to exposing sensitive information about themselves or losing their accounts to hackers.
This article will cover six fundamental security measures gamers should follow for a safer experience.
1. Secure your accounts
People don’t necessarily view gaming accounts as sensitive, so they may use simple passwords and forego security measures like 2FA.
But, your gaming accounts contain private information that can be key to enabling someone to access some of your non-gaming accounts. You also may lose a lot of money depending on the size of your gaming collection.
Create strong and secure credentials for all your gaming accounts. Use a password manager if you find it hard to remember your credentials.
2. Don’t download games from unofficial websites
As a gamer, passing up on a great deal on a game you’ve wanted to get for months can be difficult. But beware of all the third-party sellers out there, as many of them are scams. If you’re on a PC, stick with verified sellers like Steam and Origin.
Not all resellers are malicious, but be extra careful when dealing with them. Never enter your financial details on a website before you verify its integrity.
Mobile gamers are even more prone to downloading sketchy apps. Apple is very strict about letting users install apps outside the App Store. If you’re on Android, it’s best to only play games available on the Play Store.
3. Keep your personal information to yourself
Having fun with others is one of the main reasons people play online games. But be careful not to share too much information about yourself with other players, especially if you just met them.
Not everyone you meet online will have bad intentions, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. If you do reveal information like your name, do it in a private chat. Exposing your name, address, or other sensitive info publicly can lead to harassment, cyber-bullying, and even something more serious like stalking or identity theft.
4. Update your gaming platforms
Like all other apps, gaming platforms are prone to vulnerabilities that threat actors can exploit to execute attacks. If you read through the release notes of the updates, you will find that most of them contain security fixes and improvements. Not having those installed can make your account vulnerable to an attack.
Most platforms are strict regarding software updates. They often won’t let you start a game before installing their latest update. But not all platforms impose such restrictions, which means it’s up to you to download updates and keep yourself safe.
5. Don’t tolerate bullying
It’s no secret that gamers can get a little too competitive. That competitiveness can sometimes manifest into bullying. While most bullying is harmless, that doesn’t mean you have to take it. You also never know what people are capable of in real life, even if it all seems like fun and games.
Report players who partake in bullying or other aggressive behavior like threatening others. If there’s no other option, leave the game. Your mental health and security are more important than a game.
6. Be careful with mods and other add-ons
Downloading games from trusted sources isn’t enough. You also have to watch out when installing any additional software for the games you play. Mods are incredibly popular for some games, but that doesn’t mean that all mods are fair game. You should rely on trusted websites for downloading all your mods, cheats, or other add-ons.
Someone can easily inject malware into the downloadable files. Even if the mod works as advertised, your computer may become infected. You should be particularly wary if a website asks you to pay or provide sensitive information in exchange for the download link.
Video games are a great way to blow off some steam and have fun with friends. But because of their relaxing nature, people tend to turn their guards off and look past standard security measures when gaming.
Your gaming accounts can be just as valuable to a hacker as all other accounts. Treat them as such and protect them with strong passwords and two-factor authentication and be wary of whoever you meet online.
Hi, my name is Daniel, I’m a passionate gamer for over 5 years. Having used various gaming products myself, I will help other gamers benefit from the blog’s recommendations of gaming headsets.