NortonLifeLock has released the results of a global study that sheds light on cyber risks affecting the gaming community. The survey, conducted by The Harris Poll of more than 700 American adults who currently play online games, found that 47% of American gamers have experienced a cyberattack on their account or gaming device. , 76% say they were financially affected as a result, losing an average of $ 744.
The study also found surprising results on player-to-player cyber risks and the tremendous effort players are willing to put into winning. 23% of US gamers are likely to hack a friend, family member or romantic partner’s game account if they knew it would give them a competitive edge in an online game. This sentiment is most pronounced among hardcore gamers in the United States, with 42% agreeing, underscoring the stubborn determination of serious gamers to win.
“These results are shocking, but there are players who will do whatever it takes to win,” said BigCheeseKIT, Twitch player and streamer. “I’ve learned that when you play online it is very important to know who you are friends with online and what information you share when you are playing online. While this is especially true for professional gamers who have this public profile, it is clear that this holds true for any online gamer.
Competitive dynamics putting players at risk of a cyberattack
The competitive motivation extends to all types of gamers in the United States, from casual gamers to hardcore gamers. If they knew it would give them a competitive advantage, about one in four US gamers are likely to exploit a flaw or bug in a game (27%), pay to take possession of another user’s game account. (25%), install tips on their account or gaming devices (24%), or hack into a random person’s gaming account (24%).
“Tricks, coaches and feats can be incredibly appealing to motivated players,” said Darren Shou, chief technology officer, NortonLifeLock. “Scammers know this and will often try to trick players into clicking phishing links or downloading malware by touting limited edition items or secret cheat codes that promise to give the competition a boost. .
“If the scam works, players could lose their gaming profile, digital assets or personal information. The real competitive advantage is having strong security protection that can thwart these threats and keep players in the game. ”
- Struggle with the basics of security. Many gamers in the US admit to a number of risky online gambling habits, such as using the same password for multiple accounts or gaming devices (47%), sharing personal information (e.g. , names and birthdays) while playing an online game (39%), or downloading add-ons (e.g. characters, skins, giveaways, etc.) from a website that doesn’t was not associated with the game’s distributor (29%).
- Doxing is not uncommon. Among US gamers who have had a gaming device or account targeted by a cyber attack, one in five has been doxed (21%) or had their personal information stolen and shared publicly online.
- Play on everything. The majority of hardcore gamers in the US say they would rather spend time gaming than attending a friend or family member’s birthday party (74%), to have a date (68%) or just spending time with friends or family (55%).