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Increasing security in gaming

Could we be doing more to increase security and protect ourselves?
Could we be doing more to increase security and protect ourselves?
Flavio Takemoto

Last week was "Gamer Safety Week", which draws attention to the need for gamers to be careful with their personal information online, so as not to lose their account data, or have their identity stolen.

Sure, there are lots of tips out there that can help the situation, like these tips from EA. But, with all of the technology that gaming companies are using for actual game play, maybe there should be some more time invested in helping to stop hackers from acquiring personally identifiable information (PII), or gaming accounts and virtual currency.

This is not to say that developers aren't already thinking about this. Several games have come out with different security measures, such as Blizzard's mobile authenticator. While this can be a good deterrent, there have been several instances where there are issues logging in after downloading or buying a physical authenticator and connecting it to your account.

Yesterday it was announced that the RFID Research Center has identified the newest reincarnation of RFID coding to be acceptable for global use. What does that mean? It means that trackers could be used in nearly everything for all sorts of different uses. Wired has an article detailing some of the best uses for RFID tracking. Take note of numbers 6, 7, and 8. Although none of these uses are actually focused towards the gaming industry, they could all be geared that way. Being able to have some sort of tracker for games, computers, or consoles could be a possibility, as well as a virtual card you could scan to purchase different games.

Is RFID a bit too "big brother" for you? Then another possibility may be the Smartcard chip. If you haven't heard of these, you probably have at least seen one without knowing it. The military has been using them for almost a decade now, and certain credit card companies have jumped on board as well. The chip placed in a card is used to store a virtual profile, which can be accessed when put into a Smartcard reader. This could be more beneficial than an RFID tag, and a bit less invasive. Companies such as EA, Riot Games, Blizzard, and others could benefit by having users purchase an optional "Gamer ID" for that company's products. The consumer's profile would then be set into the Smartcard chip that's placed on the identification card. They could then have access to the games they have purchased anywhere they have access to a reader, and could log in without worry.

The business of security is a high priority, and not to be taken lightly. There are products out there that let us do amazing things with today's technology. What other things do you think we could do to increase security to protect personal information? Do you think that using technology such as this may be taking things too far?