10 Ways to protect yourself online when gaming 

Sep 5, 2022

Nine Ways to Protect Yourself When Gaming Online

Meta: Ensure that you are staying safe when you play online games on your computer or smartphone by reading our top nine tips to stay safe when gaming online.

Nine Tips to Stay Safe When Gaming Online

Most people enjoy playing games on their computers or smartphones these days. There is such a variety of games that you can easily find a genre or specific game that is to your liking.

Whether you are playing first-person shooters such as Counter-Strike, card games such as poker, or adventure games, you must be careful about the dangers that lurk online. 

Specific measures towards keeping you protected are essential, as they ensure that your information is not vulnerable to malicious actors. You can never be sure who is trying to gain access to your private data or device, especially if you are using public Wi-Fi networks.

Below are nine steps that you can take to stay safe when you are gaming online.

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1. Use a VPN

Using a virtual private network, or VPN, ensures that a layer exists between your device and anyone who wants to do you harm. Whether you are using a public Wi-Fi network, accessing the internet at home, or using the Wi-Fi at work or college, you are better protected when you activate your VPN before gaming. Another advantage of VPNs is that you can improve your ping to gaming servers.

2. Install Antivirus

Ensure that you have an Antivirus program installed on any device where you are playing games. Such programs, which include Malware protection, will ensure that you are not in danger of any harmful programs or files being added to your device while you are playing a game. You should use such programs on your smartphone and computer, but they are not necessary if you are playing games on consoles.

3. Change Passwords Regularly

You will have to create a password when you open up accounts on various gaming platforms, such as Steam, Microsoft Store, or the Epic Games Store. Take two precautions when you are making such passwords. Ensure you do not use the same password across all your services, while you should make it a habit to change your passwords every few months. If you have issues with keeping track of passwords, use a password manager.

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4. Use Two-Factor Auth

Many services now offer two-factor authorization each time you log in on a device that you have not used in the past. You can turn this on to ensure that if someone does gain access to your gaming account, they cannot log in and do any damage unless they also have access to your mobile phone or email address. Two-factor auth will keep you safe from losing your accounts.

5. Avoid Public Wi-Fi

Even if you are using a VPN, you should take great care when using a public Wi-Fi network. Most experts state that you are slightly safer if you use a public network that requires a password to log in. Using networks that do not require passwords is a significant security risk, as anyone can access the network and attempt to steal information on other peoples’ devices by stealth.

6. Use Different Email Addresses

You should not always use the same email address when signing up for various gaming services or using online stores to buy games. While such a step is more convenient, using the same email address can put you in danger of your other accounts being compromised. If the servers of one service are hacked, and information is stolen, this could result in your other accounts being compromised if you use the same email address across them all.

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7. Avoid Giving Information to Strangers

Playing video games online is a great way to make friends, even if you do not meet up with them in person. While having casual conversations about games and other interests is not an issue, you should avoid giving out too much personal information to someone. Do not tell people where you live, your full name, where you work or go to school, or anything about your family. Such information could be used against you or as part of an identity theft scam.

8. Use Payment Portals

Anytime you are buying a game from a digital store, avoid entering your credit card or debit card information. Such details can be stolen, especially if you use a Wi-Fi network without a VPN or the service is hacked. What you should do is use a payment portal, such as PayPal, to complete all such transactions.

9. Regularly Update Devices

Playing games on your mobile or computer is a lot of fun. If you want to keep your device safe when you are enjoying your favorite games, you must keep it regularly updated. Ensure you are installing all updates that are put through to your device by the manufacturer or service provider. 

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