Esports Players: How to stay safe from cyber risks


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DUBAI 14 January 2021: As the attention on esports continues to grow, and more money gets invested in the competitions, the esports industry is expected to attract an increased number of cyberattacks.

Hackers looking to benefit from this industry will target vulnerable players and fans by launching DDoS attacks, malware, and more. On the other hand, unscrupulous players will be looking for an edge over their competitors, thus creating a pool of fraudsters in the background.

Below we highlight some of the risks of esports players and fans and what you can do to protect yourself.

Cyber Risks

The popularity of esports also comes with an upsurge in security threats for both fans and players, as outlined below:

DDoS Attacks: DDoS attacks lead to severe lag issues, which is critical in competitions where milliseconds can actually determine wins and losses. These attacks can cause reputational harm to a match or be used as a tournament-fixing tactic. DDoS attacks can also be utilized for extortion, where criminals demand ransom money to stop the disruption.

Ransomware: Cybercriminals can attack electronic sports players with ransomware meant to disrupt their matches by locking up game files and keeping players from participating in upcoming tournaments and matches. Players will have to part with some ransom for their data to be released.

Man-in-the-Middle Attack: Many esports players and fans connect to public Wi-Fi networks in a bid to save on data. But, unsecured public networks expose us to hackers, who insert themselves in the middle of a data stream to take advantage of whatever you are doing online.

Ways for players and fans to protect themselves

Use Security Tools: While it is recommended that you steer clear of free public Wi-Fi networks, some situations may arise that will force you to use them.

In such a case, ensure you are using a security tool to encrypt your network and make it secure. Both esports players and fans should make sure they are protected if they want to participate in esports tournaments and other online gaming activities.

Use a Password Manager: Cybercriminals often target esports accounts to compromise them and shut the owner out of their account. They utilize password cracking tools and keyloggers to gain access to your account. By using a password manager, you’ll be able to generate strong, unique passwords and keep them safely on your device or in the cloud. Most password managers have a browser extension that enables you to autofill your details, ensuring that they are protected from keylogger malware.

The rise in popularity of esports has not only led to the advent of professional esports teams, tournaments, leagues, and fans but unscrupulous online characters ready to unleash malware and other cyber risks on unsuspecting players and fans. Use the above tips to protect yourself.


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