Kaspersky Labs, in a recent report, has revealed that 2013 has been a particularly troublesome year for PC gamers. A total of 11.7 million attacks were launched by hackers, targeting PC gamers by using malware.
Gamers hold a certain attraction for hackers because a significant number of gamers tend to spend money on their games. When it comes to PC gamers, this may mean that a successful malware can steal away their financial information or even their login credentials for different online accounts.
In 2013, hackers used a whopping 4.6 million gaming-specific malware to target the gamers. According to Christian Funk of Kaspersky Labs, “Gaming has an ever-increasing fanbase, which also means that the number of potential victims for cybercriminals is rising as well. The cybercriminals are taking a lot of effort into their attacks and we can see the upsurge in sophistication. Especially in times like Christmas, when a lot of new games are being released, gamers need to be attentive stay secure.”
In launching these attacks, the hackers are not limited to gamers alone. In some instances, hacking attempts were made directly on gaming companies, resulting in some successful data leaks. Underground hacking forums currently sell login credentials of popular gaming hubs such as Steam as well as other data illegally acquired from the gamers.
In many cases, fake downloads are offered to lure the gamers so that they could be tricked into downloading malware. Such tactics are mostly limited to popular games such as Minecraft and Grand Theft Auto V. Being offered as a free download whereas the games originally need to be bought, gamers are often attracted to such fake offers and end up being malware victims.
Tips for the gamers:
It goes without saying that you must have a reputed and effective anti-virus software installed on your system. Next, your passwords must be strong and secure so that a hacker shouldn’t be able to guess or crack them. Finally, never click on any unverified links or fall for such offers which appear too good. They’re always a scam.