Anytime you decide to go online, you’re susceptible to varying degrees of fraud. It can be a phishing expedition or something as egregious as identity theft and financial fraud. Adults have to be concerned but children and teens can become unwitting prey for those who are expert at luring kids into any number of sinister traps. Therefore, it is vitally important to identify the threats that are lurking and the ways in which we can mitigate those dangers.
Mobile Platforms Susceptible
Whether you are a recreational gamer or a seasoned pro, the fact that you are online and putting your credentials out there, even though they are cloaked in User ID’s and protected passwords, is certainly not a foolproof way of making sure you are safe from the existential threats that are always present.
And don’t we love the convenience of having all of the action in the palm of our hands, ready to roll when we have a few minutes to kill while waiting to get our oil changed or sitting in the waiting room before a doctor’s appointment. It is a terrific diversion and millions upon millions of people are glued to their mobile devices every single day because of it.
But whether you are an esports fan or making a bet you should always look for a reliable online sports betting app because there are dangers that can be lurking in the background, and if you are using a WIFI connection you can be at greater risk. Oftentimes we see fraudulent game updates that trick gamers into believing they are merely equipping their device with the latest patches or updates. This is just the portal the hacker needs to get access to your device and explore all the critical information contained therein.
You should also be aware that the games themselves can be hacked via malware attached to the software that acts as a probe to ferret out everything from passwords to bank account numbers. The developers and game publishers are unaware until it is too late but meanwhile their legions of subscribers have been compromised because of the security breach. It’s a dangerous, dark world out there and unfortunately, you won’t see it coming until it is too late.
Prevention & Protection
Online scamming runs the gamut from viruses planted through poisoned links to fraudulent emails demanding a call to action by the recipient. It is a worldwide epidemic and the UK has instituted the ‘Banking Protocol’ to help prevent at least some of this nefarious activity.
Katy Worobec, managing director of Economic Crime, UK Finance, said: “Fraud has a devastating impact on victims so partnerships like the Banking Protocol are not only crucial in helping vulnerable people, but it also stops stolen money from going on to fund other illicit activities including drug smuggling, human trafficking, and terrorism.
“Criminals have continued to capitalize on the pandemic to commit fraud, callously targeting victims through impersonation, romance, courier and rogue trader scams. Branch staff and the police are working on the frontline to protect people from fraud and these figures highlight the importance of their work in stopping these cruel scams and bringing the criminals to justice.”
There are several steps gamers can take to protect themselves from fraudulent activity, not the least of which is starting with the basics such as a strong password replete with upper- and lower-case letters, numbers, and symbols. Never use a birthday or numbers and letters in sequence such as 1234 or qwerty. Those are easier for hackers to break and avoid using your name in the password. If at all possible, use a password generator and password manager to protect and keep your PW’s safe.
If two-step authentication is available on the sites and platforms you use, always take advantage of that option. This makes it more difficult for scammers to infiltrate your PC, laptop, or mobile device and will protect you from future incursions.
It is always a good idea to make sure your device is installed with reputable antivirus software that will combat any attacks and make you aware of the sites that contain such malware. This is essential, especially as the viruses get more sophisticated and the attacks more frequent.
Another potential landmine can be avoided by being cautious of using a public WIFI where sharing is not always caring. Others using the WIFI can employ it as a conduit to your device and bad things can happen. Make certain that you use a protected WIFI with a secure password attached to it.
Lastly, always keep your software up to date. It can be a drag when an update pops up on your screen and you don’t have the time nor the inclination to watch a generic-looking icon spin around while the software is updating. Your device becomes temporarily inoperable and it feels like the update will never end. Nevertheless, make sure you are vigilant about updating because it will protect you from possible threats going forward and the waiting period is well worth the small aggravation in the grand scheme of things.