Antivirus Protection & Internet Security Software
17 Dec 2013Virus News
Kaspersky Lab experts have discovered that PC gamers around the globe were hit by a massive number of attacks in 2013. Currently Kaspersky Lab knows 4.6 million pieces of malware which focus on gaming, with the total number of attacks facing gamers reaching 11.7 million globally. On average, users were hit by 34,000 attacks from gaming malware every day. With Christmas coming up hundreds of thousands are expecting to receive games as presents, so Kaspersky Lab experts are recommending users take the right precautions.
Russian gamers were the most at risk, as hackers made 8,813,050 attempts on them from 1 January to December 2013. Vietnam was in second with 503,947, followed by China on 376,058. Here’s the global top 10:
Gamers face all kinds of different digital assaults on their systems. Underground forums, such as the Steam portal and marketplace, are ridden with cyber crooks selling access to people’s gaming accounts. The market for usernames and passwords is fuelled by attacks on the gaming companies themselves. Earlier this year, Kaspersky Lab detected a major espionage campaign on a range of massive multiplayer online games makers, with source code and other valuable data stolen.
Malware designers target specific games, such as the hugely popular Minecraft. Earlier this year, a fake Minecraft tool built with Java promised to give the player powers such as banning other users, but in the background it was stealing usernames and passwords. When Grand Theft Auto V landed earlier this year, various sites offered fake downloads to access the record-breaking game for free. But when users tried to get the game, all they got was malware - a classic example of powerful names being abused to lure victims into downloading malicious code.
Then there are the traditional scams, like phishing. Slews of emails are sent out every time a big gaming launch happens, especially at Christmas, attempting to lure users into handing over data or money with the promise of discounts or cheap gaming goods.
“Gaming has an ever increasing fanbase, which means that the number of potential victims for cyber criminals is rising as well. Cyber criminals are putting a lot of effort into their attacks and we can see a surge in their sophistication. At times like Christmas, when a lot of new games are being released, gamers need to be even more attentive to stay secure,” says Christian Funk, Senior Virus Analyst, Global Research & Analysis Team.
So gamers, especially those investing in a load of new games this Christmas, need to take the right precautions, invest in adequate protection and wise up to the range of threats they face. Here are Kaspersky Lab’s top five tips for gaming security:
Read more on securelist.com
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