Gaming accounts are becoming a valuable asset, perhaps even more than parents may realize. It’s no longer about the value of the games linked to the account, as companies have introduced various details like loot crates, tradeable skins, and other forms of virtual currency which have made some people’s accounts attractive targets to attackers. When you can sell a simple game skin for several hundred dollars and have an account that holds dozens of those skins at a time, this can become a serious problem.
How to Stay Safe
Most gaming services offer 2-factor authentication options for their logins, and it’s a good idea to activate that and keep it on at all times. It’s a great additional barrier to someone who might have obtained your password through illicit channels, and while it will still not stop an attacker who has access to your other device, it will go a long way towards making your account more secure. You should also avoid reusing the same nickname on all platforms. It might be tempting to maintain a consistent gamer identity on the Web, but it also makes it very easy for an attacker to track down your other profiles once they’ve targeted you on one platform.
Are All Games at Risk?
Not all games are that problematic, admittedly. Free racing games that are played online, as well as other browser-based offers tend to be more reliable and less susceptible to attacks of this type, mostly because they are not tied to any specific accounts. Still, you should be wary about giving up your information online and linking any profiles to accounts that you don’t recognize. Many services are making it easy to link up your different accounts together now in order to have a more consistent centralized profile, but this can easily be a potential risk as much as it can help you out.
Changes Are Coming
Things will likely not remain as they are forever. It’s very likely that we’re going to see some changes in the way online gaming services work, especially those that give access to loot crates and premium skins. There is already some talk in the industry about a more centralized approach to account creation and linking, and more secure systems that drive the whole thing in the background, but we haven’t seen any concrete implementations yet. We’re confident that something is going to come up sooner or later though, and hopefully it will set a proper trend for the whole market.
Online gaming is not going anywhere, that’s a fact. But it is very likely going to change in some significant ways in the near future, mostly related to the way companies handle the security and privacy of their users. With Steam introducing new profile privacy settings, GOG following suit and other companies eyeing the idea as well, it’s only a matter of time before the gaming world is completely changed, and gamers have to jump through a few extra hoops to play their favorite titles. But it will very likely be for the better.