Loads of us enjoy online gaming as a way to kick back and relax, but it doesn’t come without its security concerns. Whether it’s a horror story about your iTunes account getting emptied as a result of too many microtransactions, personal information being leaked, or the sudden disappearance of a game you bought online, there does seem to be a story about online security for every scenario. The good news is that, as long as you’re relatively sensible, it is totally safe to play games online. Here are some pointers that will make sure your security is top-notch when it comes to gaming.
Your Privacy is Important
Although we all know to look at the privacy information for the website, provider, or game that we are using, not all of us realize how much control we have over our own privacy. Choosing a username that closely reflects your real-life name can make it easier for people who you might not know to find out who you are. Although most people who play online games are totally friendly and not a threat at all, some people may not have your best interests at heart. Ensuring that your real name is kept private, as well as birth dates and particularly locations, will ensure that you don’t ever have to interact with those people in real life. If people on games where you can communicate with one another ask you for any of this information, then don’t wait to question why they need it, just politely decline to give it to them.
Keep a Lock on Microtransactions
Microtransactions tend to be more common on mobile apps, but they do still exist elsewhere. A microtransaction is a small payment that is often used to buy a special sort of in-game currency, unlock a bonus level, or perhaps attain something wearable for your character. Although these transactions tend to be less than a couple of dollars, after a while, they really add up. There have been numerous stories in the news about accidental bills coming through as a result of the microtransaction fees mounting up so, just as before, it’s important to keep a limit on them. If you’d rather not pay for them at all then Apple offers a method of locking all microtransactions on apps to stop you from accidentally spending too much.
Look Out For Licenses
Licensing is an important thing to learn about for anyone who enjoys iGaming. All online casinos must be licensed by the relevant authority. In the United Kingdom, the UKGC is the authority that gives the seal of approval to online casinos. In the USA each company is licensed depending on the state that they are registered in, so you’ll have to do a little work to find out the relevant licensing authority for your state. Finding information on security for major online gaming websites is usually straightforward.
As well as looking for a UKGC license, or equivalent, it is always a good idea to check out the security pages for individual companies. For example, on the PokerStars website, a comprehensive rundown of how the experience is made fair is clearly displayed, including a guide on player and software security along with the account security information. Being transparent about this information is in the best interests of both the player and the company, as then everyone can clearly understand what to expect from the agreement. If you find an online casino website where this information is really hidden away then be careful to check out their license before depositing any money.
Don’t Buy Cheap Game Keys
The big games providers sure know how to charge for some of their titles, so it makes sense to try and save money if you can. However, there are places where you really shouldn’t compromise, and game keys are one of them. If you’re downloading a game from a trusted provider then they will usually send you a game key with which to start your download. Many people search online for discount game keys and are usually able to find them at a fraction of the price. The problem is that these game keys, generally speaking, aren’t the same as the ones you get from the provider. The discounted game keys are often keys that were given to people who were reviewing the game ahead of time, so they’ll have a timer on them. Once your time has elapsed, your game is gone.
Be Mindful of Cheats and Mods
Mods, short for modifications, can be a great way to enhance your gaming experience. Some mods are so comprehensive that it can feel as though you’re playing an entirely different game. Many games allow players to share mods with one another and it can be a cost effective way to get more gaming time out of your favorite titles. However, not all mods are made the same. Some people will share totally free mods that will work exactly as intended, but others don’t always have your best interests at heart. Some mods that are downloaded from unofficial websites can include viruses which could slow down your computer, or worse, allow hackers to access your files, or damage your gaming device. Generally speaking, you should stick to downloading mods from the game’s official website, or somewhere like the Steam workshop.
As we have seen throughout this article, there are many issues to consider in order to stay safe in the online gaming world. However, once you are aware of all these issues, all you have to do is enjoy the game by following the guidelines we have discussed here and taking into account the security of each website you enter. In this way, you will avoid any unforeseen events that may arise during your gaming session.