Online gamers don’t always stop to think about the risks of digital identity theft while taking part in their favorite past times. Gamers can develop a false sense of confidence, since they often have higher technical abilities than your average Internet user. Those who participate in MMORPG communities often take a hands-on approach to their fun, building their own gaming PCs and customizing their operating systems and software to optimize gameplay. Unfortunately, gamers can still fall victim to fraudulent attacks on their accounts. Identity thieves come with attacks that are increasingly difficult to detect, which can trick even the most tech-savvy gamer. Take a look at these common ways criminals can gain access to your gaming accounts and how to stop them.
Phishers often attempt to lure game players into providing personal information by posing as a gaming company in email correspondences. You might receive a generic message about updating your profile, resetting your password, or providing game improvement feedback. The email might look official, using a game company’s official logos. Phishers are able to create emails that look extremely authentic, tricking gamers into relinquishing important data. This info can then be used by phishers to log into other important financial and email accounts. You can protect yourself by scrutinizing links in emails and avoiding suspicious URLs.
Sometimes digital criminals will pose as members of a game company’s staff, contacting you in-game via private messages. You might be asked to provide your account password so that this “game administrator” can run tests on your character. The hacker might offer incentives, like high-end character gear or in-game money. Never provide your password to anyone – game company staff members will never ask for this information.
Avoid Public Computers
Some gamers will use public community computers at libraries and schools to get their entertainment fix. Unfortunately, digital criminals often target these computers by installing key-logging software, according to warnings published by the Internet Safety Project. These malicious applications collect everything users type on this computer. This allows hackers to collect an enormous amount of personal data, including all of the logins users type onto these public computers. Try to quell your entertainment urges and only use personal computers to sign onto your games.
Gaming can be an immensely relaxing past time. However, players should be aware of suspicious activity, since it’s easy to fall prey to lots of different types of fraud – both online and off. Practice safe computer usage habits and never give anyone your personal log in credentials.