Online Gaming, at its core, is really an amazing thing. You have the ability to play with people who love the same games as you do, no matter where in the world they’re located. It’s an incredible experience, but like anything on the internet, it isn’t necessarily a safe experience. If you aren’t taking the proper measures to keep yourself secure when you’re gaming online, your fun time can turn into a frustrating time.
Don’t Let People Know Your Real Name
Never use your real name as your screen name, and avoid singing up for gaming accounts with an email address that features your real name. There’s a reason why gamers have such unusual handles – it isn’t because they think they’re cooler than anyone else, it’s because they prefer the anonymity provided by that screen name. When you need to provide your real name or contact details, provide them directly to the game company through their secure website. Never post them where anyone can see them.
Use a VPN When You Play or Buy
Gaming involves a lot of downloading. If you’re very invested in the game that you play, you may feel inclined to make in-game purchases for special items or upgrades. It’s your money, and you’re free to spend it however you’d like to. Just make sure you’re doing it safely. If you’re using an open WiFi connection, almost any hacker can see exactly what you’re doing. A VPN is a special tunnel designed to protect you. All you need to do is read up on gaming VPNs on a site like Secure Thoughts to find the right one for you.
Be Wary of People Who Claim They Can Help
Do you really need that rare item? Do you need to improve your stats to beat a difficult part of the game? If someone comes along and claims they can help you, you’ll have to consider what’s in it for them. If they claim they need to log in to your account to help you, immediately block them. It’s even more suspicious if they want payment for their help. If someone offers you help in the form of instructions or links to game walk-through videos on YouTube, you’re probably alright. Never trust someone who wants something from you.
Keep Your Gaming Friends Separate From Your Real Life Friends
On the internet, people can be whoever they want to be. You may be honest, but there’s no guarantee that everyone else is. Don’t pass out your social media handles on your gaming channels. Social networks exist specifically for gamers, and most people on those websites prefer to limit or omit the personal information that they share with people. You’d be surprised how much people can find out about you just by clicking through your personal social media accounts. When you aren’t sure exactly who you’re talking to, that’s a risk you should never be willing to take.
If you ever feel uncomfortable with something you’ve spotted or a message you’ve received while gaming online, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Report and block users you feel may be up to something suspicious. Online gaming companies keep support staff online at all times to help people like you, and they’re happy to do their part to keep the gaming community safe.