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Cyber-crime

Gaming Platforms and Companies Targeted by Hackers

The gaming industry has changed drastically over the past few decades. Some of these changes have led to considerable developments in the cyberthreat landscape as it applies to gaming companies, the games themselves, and the user base that enjoys them. The 2019 State of the Internet / Security Web Attacks and Gaming Abuse Report shows that hackers have taken the gaming industry as the principal target of attack. According to the report, hackers had launched 12 billion credential stuffing attacks on game websites within 17 months, from November 2017 to March 2019, compared to 55 billion in all industries. This figure makes the gaming industry one of the fastest-growing targets for hackers who want to make a quick profit.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic and its associated lockdowns, the world is going through a tough period. Today, people spend much time on online platforms engaging in various activities in their abundant free time. Cybercriminals continue to exploit people and organizations through their vulnerabilities. Cybersecurity researchers disclosed that attacks on gaming services has increased by 7% in the past few months. Besides, the Personal Identifiable Information (PII), card details, or other banking credentials are the key goals of cyber attackers. The attacks faced by the Gaming Industry within April 2020 are: 
An anonymous hacker leaked the usernames and passwords (around 1 GB of data) of close to 23 million players of Webkinz World, a children’s game by the Canadian firm, Ganz.  
Attackers deployed malicious software to lure people into providing access to the beta version of “Valorant,” a new title from Riot Games.  This enabled the allowed attackers to record users’ keystrokes, allowing them to steal login credentials.
Large scale DDoS attacks on EA Sports forced the company to pull its servers offline globally. The outage also affected clients in Canada, Egypt, South Africa, among others. 
An attacker infiltrated the SCUF Gaming’s unsecured database containing over 1.1 million customer records and asked for a ransom of 0.3 BTC in a note. 
Attackers took down over 50 sports books sites powered by SBTech. This had maximum victims covered in the US and Europe.  
Researchers discovered a powerful malware ‘LokiBot’ that infect gamers by impersonating the launcher for Epic Games, the developer behind games like Fortnite.
The actions of these hackers are not only committing a crime by themselves but also recruiting young gamers to work for them. Reports show that 82% of teens and young adults recruited by experienced hackers had developed their cyber-crime skills through video gaming.
Financial services like PayPal and other digital wallets would be the primary targets for hackers. However, hackers can just as easily access your bank account from your shopping and gaming accounts. Gaming and consumer goods are the top two targets for unique distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks after financial services. But overall, most of the attack events still target the gaming industry. Gamers should, therefore, stay alert and do not click on any suspicious link to avoid falling prey to cyber-crime campaigns.