It’s no secret that online gaming has experienced explosive growth over the past few years. With a plethora of games to choose from, it is essential for companies to do everything possible to keep current players and attract new ones. Nothing can compromise a company’s ability to keep and attract players more than security flaws that lead to account takeover and transactional fraud.
Focus Areas for Gaming:
Keep the PR for your company positive
As the industry expands it is essential to avoid negative publicity regarding security issues. Consequences of a public hack are severe and often include customer loss, increased operational costs due to customer support, revenue loss, and brand damage. It is your responisbility as a company that guards users personal and financial information to protect their accounts and transactions. Think of it like this, protect your customers, protect your brand.
A virtual economy is a target
Virtual goods are becoming the norm for online games, especially in free-to-play-game models. Gamers want rewards for their successes, i.e. virtual goods. This virtual economy fluctuates much like our own offline economy and includes payouts, rewards, and sometimes, bragging rights. Just like the nicest house on the block or your neighbors Escalade (fancy), these virtual goods become a target in the gaming world. According to Cartagena Capital, this online world of buying, selling and bartering is leading researchers to estimate that by the end of 2012, sales of virtual gifts sold within online games will reach 6 billion in 2013. This increase in transactions leads to an increase in fraud and sometimes gold farming.
Online gaming invites new forms of cheating
Gaming itself, whether it is a board game, card game, or a simple game of tag, opens itself up for cheating. Typically, when you think of cheating you think of someone who sabotages someone else to win a game unfairly, but in the gaming world cheating can take different forms. Who wants to get to the hardest level in a game and find out that someone has erased all of the progress they made? Not me.
With so much time and money invested in the online gaming experience, its pretty clear that gamers need protection. Not only do most users trade, buy, or sell virtual goods but they also attach sensitive user information such as credit card numbers, birthdate, and an address to accounts. Like anything online, this puts them at risk to scams, identity theft, hacking, phishing, pharming, and more.
If you want to solve this problem before it happens, take the measures to protect your users now. Considering the financial investment gamers are making, it is a company’s responsibility to protect users.
Two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security that gamers need. TeleSign 2FA offers your players efficient authentication without requiring them to carry around a physical token or download software. Best of all you can even customize authentication messages for your users, so Sunderpants or Ragebar does the calling.
Companies have also seen success by adding TeleSign 2FA with PhoneID Standard, a product that enables gaming companies to quickly identify high-risk transactions. Companies have found that fraud is associated with certain phone types such as non-fixed VoIP and pre-paid mobiles. PhoneID Standard returns this data and empowers companies to make quick decisions if a user is high-risk or not. Additonally, PhoneID Contact delivers user name and address as a another fraud signal.
Müller-Veerse, Falk Vocke Jan, Rohini Vaidyanathan, Dhanajay and Malatinska, Ina (2011) Online, Social, and Mobile: The future of the video games industry. Cartagena Capital. Retrieved August 20, 2012 from http://www.cartagena-capital.com/news-and-events/news/256-online-social-and-mobile-the-future-of-the-video-games-industry
Image Courtesy of Graur Codrin – FreeDigitalPhotos.net