Gamers Were Targeted by Hackers During Pandemic

In the last 2 years, the gaming industry experienced more than 10 billion cyberattacks. The number of cyberattacks targeting gamers has also spiked during the pandemic, according to a recent report from Akamai, a cloud service provider.

“When games go online and use cloud infrastructure and provide cross-platform and cross-generation features, there are opportunities for cyberattacks,” Steve Ragan, cybersecurity researcher at Akamai, told GamesBeat. “Gaming companies do their best to protect their games and players, although I remain concerned, the gaming industry is a very attractive target for cybercriminals.”

Gamers are targeted by cyber criminals because they meet several criteria, such as being active in the online community. Apart from that, gamers also have income that they are ready to spend. And usually, they’ll spend the money on games. So, cybercriminals see the gaming industry as an easy target.

Reports from Akamai indicate that during the pandemic, cyberattacks targeting gamers increased. The reason is simple, because when the quarantine is imposed, gamers will become more active in playing games. This makes gamers a target for cyber criminals.

One of the most commonly used methods of attacking gamers is credential stuffing, where hackers use leaked credentials – usernames and passwords – on the internet to take over an account. If a hacker succeeds in taking over a gamer’s account, he will be able to buy many things, such as in-game skins and move these items to other accounts. Meanwhile, the person who has to pay the bills from the hacker’s purchase is the account owner.

“If I’m not careful, I could get a bill of US $ 10,000 because a hacker bought 100 skins in the game,” said Ragan.

Apart from credential stuffing, another method hackers commonly use to attack gamers is phishing. Through this method, hackers will create fake sites from certain gaming sites or gaming platforms. The fake site will be made in such a way as to resemble the original site. Its purpose is to trick gamers into entering credentials in the form of their username and password.

Interestingly, although quite a number of gamers have been victims of cyberattacks, most are not too concerned about the security of their accounts. In a survey that Akamai conducted with DreamHack, 55% of respondents who claimed to be regular players revealed that their accounts had been attacked. However, only 20% of them are worried or very worried about the security of their accounts. The survey also shows that as many as 54% of gamers consider cybersecurity to be the responsibility of them and the gaming company.

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