THE 6 MOTIVATIONS FOR CYBERCRIME IN ONLINE VIDEO GAMES

Below you can see a synthesis of a study carried out by S2 Grupo in which the main security problems to which gamers are vulnerable are analyzed . In short, the 6 main motivations of hackers in this area are:

  1. Obtain money directly .- This sector generates many millions of euros because many of the video games are bought online and, in addition, those that are free require payments to improve the “characters”. Therefore, the money is in all the phases of the video game and the bank cards will be in the network.
  2. Obtain money indirectly .- Personal data is currently a very important asset and its value is increasing. These are stolen and sold by cybercriminals in the so-called “Dark Web” (dark web), which makes up the great conglomerate of Internet web pages and that are not visible to the majority of users who use search engines like Google and that normally promote business. illegal such as sale of weapons, drugs, human trafficking, pedophilia, etc. “We must be aware that if our children use video games that have access to the mobile camera or use a photograph of the player, the cybercriminal could hack the device and access the photographs, which could end up being sold on a pedophile website”, José Rosell, managing partner of S2 Grupo, has explained.
  3. Harassing a player .- Online video games allow connectivity with other players, you can talk in real time with them through headphones with a microphone while playing, so it is a potential channel to carry out threats, extortion , blackmail, insults or humiliation. “In these cases, it usually happens that when one of the players has a” bad loss “, cyberbullying begins, stealing some type of information from the opponent, if he has the necessary knowledge to do so,” said Miguel A. Juan, managing partner of S2 Grupo.
  4. Grooming .- It is a practice in which an adult pretends to be a minor (false profile), in any online medium, to contact a child or adolescent, try to gain their trust and approach them to obtain information from your private life, and can then redirect your conversations on other platforms such as social networks. From S2 Grupo, parents are recommended to keep a moderate control over their children’s activity in relation to online video games. “More than one of us have heard our children say:” Wait, I’m playing an online game and right now I can’t stop. ” , says José Rosell.
  5. Improve your gamer profile.- Another of the frequent motivations of cybercriminals around video games is to improve their own account or profile. In this case, it is being said that they are also players but instead of playing with their profile and / or character, they steal an account of another player much more advanced in the game. In addition, there are other motivations to steal an account, for example, that the victim’s account is Premium or to sell said account on websites such as eBay.
  6. Obtain advantages in the game .- In this case, the player uses his hacker knowledge to modify the game and obtain benefits on his account and have an advantage in the game. “This was much more common in traditional desktop consoles and is somewhat more complex to carry out today, since online gaming platforms allow these accounts to be reported and users are eliminated,” says Miguel A. Juan. From S2 Grupo it has been highlighted that, to such an extent, hacks in video games and consoles based on the motivation of money are common, that many cybercriminals dare to publish their services to hack video games and devices on websites such as “A thousand ads”.

“Knowing the risks and motivations that drive cybercriminals to act is essential for children and adolescents, who are more vulnerable, to become aware that this is a very serious issue and they need to protect themselves just as they do in off-life life. line. If they are clear that they would not go away with a stranger and the dangers they would run if they did, the same should happen with the parallelism of life connected to the network ”, said José Rosell, managing partner of S2 Grupo.

“As soon as young people know the motivations of cybercriminals, they connect directly with the need for cyber protection. This is key so that they can enjoy online video games and eSports without risks. They know that if they leave the front door open, they can break into it. Well, they also have to know that if they don’t have a secure password, for example, they can be stolen in the same way, ”Miguel A. Juan has added.