Playing online has become a massive industry and anywhere with big numbers is going to attract big players, and unfortunately, big risks. The gaming industry’s publishers have taken massive strides towards making the gaming communities they create safe places for people to gather, share opinions and enjoy the games that they create. They also create  games that encourage social interaction, by including easy ways to share aspects of the games outside of the games themselves.

On consoles for example, you only have to click one button on your controller to share a screenshot or game clip that can encourage likes or comments from other gamers. Instant shares to social networks like Facebook and Twitter and Twitch are included in all major games now.

But where there are big communities, there is big potential for malicious actors to take advantage and use these gamers to their advantage. Whether it is identity theft, account theft, or installing malicious software on gamers PCs – malicious actors always seem to be one step ahead of the game. IF you want to be one step ahead of the game and play safe, see the link at the end of this article, and also see WagerWeb advice.

Remember when the entire PlayStation Network was thrown offline one Christmas a few years ago by a hacker? If a lone individual with a grudge to bear can bring down a massive corporation like Sony, all from their little bedroom and a network connection – think how easy it is for them to magic their way into your gaming life.

I’m going to share a link with you now that may very well shock you, a bit of background first though.

Every few weeks, a membership database online somewhere will be hacked. Every few months, perhaps every year, one of these databases will be massive. Huge corporations are not immune from hackers, and you would be surprise to hear of the big names that have had their membership databases hacked. The bad news for you and I is that it is very likely your login details is stored in one of these hacked databases. even worse, this data is shared on the dark wen to the highest bidder.

In fact, that’s not even correct. You do not even have to be the highest bidder. Anyone with the right contacts can purchase databases with thousands and thousands of username and password combinations – for a few bitcoins.

The bad news for gamers is that most of us use the same password and username for various online accounts, so if your login details are leaked online from one site, they will probably allow a hacker access to any other site you have used the same credentials on!

This brings us back to the link I was going to share with you.

A few years ago as a counter initiative, a website was launched that could check your email address against these lists of hacked credentials and would let you know if your email address has been leaked. All you do is enter your email address – no passwords.The service will then return information allowing you to make your login credentials secure and change insecure logins.

You can access this service at https://haveibeenpwned.com/

Do it now, but be prepared to be shocked. When I entered my e-mail address, it showed me thirteen sites my email address had been leaked from!

Be safe out there gamers. Be informed, be safe.