Top tips for being a safe gamer

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Whether it’s through identity theft or a phishing email, cybercrime is rising at an alarming rate. For anyone using a modern piece of tech, be it a smartphone or a laptop, they’re essentially at risk of falling victim to an online crime. Another area where people can find themselves on the receiving end of an online scam is through gaming.

In fact, gaming-related scams are also growing, with examples of PlayStation accounts being hacked and instances where hackers have taken information from various peoples’ online gaming accounts. Thankfully, there are a number of simple measures people can take in order to keep themselves safe when gaming online. Below is a look at some of them.

Make sure your phone or computer is secure

It’s vitally important to check that all software is up to date on your smartphone device or computer. In doing so, you’ll make it much harder for any online criminals to send viruses or access any of your personal details. The latest versions of software generally have patches for specific errors and any known viruses.

Consider using a VPN

A VPN, or a virtual private network, is a commonly used tool by gamers around the world in order to game in a safer and more secure way. VPN’s essentially protect your data and keep your identity secure. Whether you’re sampling a selection of casino games like Ancient Egypt and Wolf Gold or you’re about to settle down for a session of Call of Duty: Vanguard, using a VPN from a number of reputable providers will enable you to have some online privacy and anonymity by creating a private network from a public internet connection. Millions of gamers around the globe are discovering the benefits of gaming using a VPN on a daily basis.

Always protect your identity

When choosing a username for a specific gaming release or adding your details to an online account, always make sure your username doesn’t give away any of your details. For example, never use your full name, date of birth, or any other valuable information, as it could potentially lead to hackers tracking you down and using the snippets of information you’ve provided to conduct cybercrime.

Use a strong password

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Having a mixture of upper and lower case letters, and numbers and characters for your password will provide you with a tough-to-hack account in the process. It sounds obvious, but easily guessable passwords are a huge factor behind the rise in online crime but, sadly, people still use them.

Only use video and audio with friends and family

Understandably, using various webcams and voice features are popular tools to use when gaming with friends and family. Sadly, though, issues can arise when using these features with strangers, therefore making it safer to avoid it altogether.

Report any harassment

If you’ve been sent odd messages while gaming or you’re on the receiving end of numerous invites from strange profiles, always be sure to block and report them should you have a feeling that they’re trying to conduct unscrupulous activities. Do not respond to the person in question either. Instead, always ignore and hand them over to the relevant services through your game or gaming device.

Only use trusted sources

If you’re downloading games from strange resources or using relatively unknown websites to access games, then you’re asking for trouble. Always make sure that the games which you’re enjoying are from trusted sources, such as the App Store, Playstation Store, Google Play and the Microsoft Store. Never take a risk in this particular space for a game that might not even be worth it anyway.

Author: Craig Rogers
Craig is an IT geek with a passion for technology and admiration for white hackers. He’s been writing on Internet security and Antivirus protection for two years. Craig’s collaborating with us to guide our readers in the tricky world of viruses and the ways to protect ourselves against the various threats they present.