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What is the common security threat in online gaming?

What is the common security threat in online gaming?

Cyber Security


The Hidden Dangers of Online Gaming: A Deep Dive into Security and Privacy Risks

In the digital age, online gaming has become a staple of entertainment for people of all ages. With the rise of mobile gaming and betting apps, particularly highlighted by the surge in usage during events like Super Bowl LVIII, there is an increasing concern about the security and overall risks associated with these platforms. A recent study by Incogni, specializing in personal data protection, has brought to light the often-overlooked aspect of online gaming: the vulnerability of personal data.

The Incogni Study: A Wake-Up Call

The study conducted by Incogni on the data practices of seven popular betting apps revealed startling findings. These apps, widely used by sports enthusiasts, are not just platforms for placing bets; they are also potential hotspots for data exploitation. DraftKings, for instance, was identified as a major collector of user data, amassing 22 types of information including location and personal media. Similarly, Caesars, Sky Bet, and William Hill each collect 17 data points, delving into personal aspects like health information and financial details.

What is particularly alarming is the extent of data sharing with third parties. Caesars, for example, shares 14 types of data, which raises serious privacy concerns. FanDuel’s practices also highlight the lack of transparency in how user data is managed and utilized.

Beyond Betting Apps: The Broader Online Gaming Landscape

This issue extends beyond betting apps to the broader world of online gaming. Many online games require personal information for account setup and in-game purchases, opening avenues for privacy breaches and financial exploitation. Cyberbullying, addiction, and exposure to inappropriate content are other significant concerns in online gaming environments.

Security Risks: A Persistent Threat

The security risks in online gaming are not hypothetical. The Incogni study noted past data breaches and hacking incidents that have affected major players like BetMGM, FanDuel, DraftKings, and Caesars. These incidents underscore the vulnerability of these platforms to cybercriminal activities, especially during high-profile events like the Super Bowl, which draw massive user engagement.

The Role of Regulation and User Vigilance

The findings of the Incogni study underscore the need for stricter regulation and transparency in the online gaming industry. There is a pressing need for clearer privacy policies and stronger data protection measures. However, regulation is only part of the solution. User vigilance is equally important. Gamers must become aware of the risks associated with online gaming and take proactive steps to protect their personal information. This includes caution about the amount of personal data shared, understanding the privacy policies of the gaming platforms, and being alert to any unusual activity within their accounts.

As online gaming continues to grow, encompassing everything from casual games to high-stakes betting apps, the need for awareness about its risks becomes increasingly critical. The Incogni study serves as a reminder that while these platforms offer entertainment and the thrill of the game, they also pose significant risks to personal privacy and security. Both industry leaders and users must work together to create a safer online gaming environment, where the joy of the game is not overshadowed by the fear of data exploitation and security breaches.

IBM – United States

What is the common security threat in online gaming?