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Safe Internet Day 2022: Six Tips to Avoid Phishing

Phishing is a common practice that uses different methods to fraudulently deceive individuals or companies and gain access to sensitive information. 

Although this can sound concerning, for Safer Internet Day we have this guest post from Ubisoft’s Customer Relationship Centre to provide six simple tips to help you secure your data:  

1. Take advantage of available security features. With the development of new technologies, video games companies are now offering a greater range of methods to safeguard accounts and data. Your password is the most important element of security; make sure you use numbers and special characters and keep these varied from other passwords you already use. Quite simply, the more complicated the password, the more difficult it will be for phishers to steal it.  

Additionally, most gaming companies offer extra security for players' accounts such as 2-Step Verification, security questions or mobile phone verification. When possible, use these as they will drastically increase the security on your account and proactively protect your account from potentially fraudulent attacks. The sole purpose of these features is to safeguard your data.  

2. Be mindful of any data you share. Phishers will not hesitate to use any information they find on you. Any pieces of information you share on any social media is a potential clue that can be used by phishers to gain access to personal data or your accounts. Limit the information you share about yourself.  

3. Be aware. Make sure you monitor activity on your different accounts and devices. Phishers tend to be subtle and can discreetly infiltrate your accounts or devices to make changes before completely taking control. Regularly check on your account or devices to verify if there is no suspicious activity, emails from unknown recipients, connections from unknown devices or minor changes to information on the account. In cases of doubt, it is advised to disconnect all the devices from the account and change the password.  

4. Phishers will engage in social engineering to get information from you. Social engineering is a deceptive practice to take advantage of human biases that can result in unauthorised access to systems or to acquire sensitive information.  

Phishers are usually very good at making people believe they are well-intended; they will engage with you to make you trust them or pretend they are calling on behalf of a certain authority.  Whether it is in a game chat, via email or phone, never give personal information to people asking you to. In most cases, legitimate companies will never ask you to share information that could put your security at risks such as your password or personal information. 

5. Beware of unknown links. One of the most common ways for phisher to infiltrate your devices and get access to your information is by providing a link to click on. By accessing malicious links, you risk giving over data or to be infected by malicious software.  

If you receive a link from an untrusted or unknown sender do not click the link. Quick research on Google will easily give you information if a link is safe or not.   

Phishing can take many forms; it is important to be vigilant and not to be too hasty if something seems suspicious, or too appealing so be careful.  

6. Stay at the cutting edge of security. Companies dedicate a lot of time into increasing the security of their services and platforms. It is important to protect your devices and accounts with tools or software that are available. Keeping your devices up to date with anti-virus and other software increases your security so you can be assured that you are protected from fraudulent attacks.   

This is a fast-moving landscape, but if you follow these steps and remain vigilant with your personal data you can avoid becoming a victim of phishing. 

Avatar for Andrew Robertson
Andrew Robertson
Andy Robertson is the editor of AskAboutGames and has written for national press and broadcast about video games and families for over 15 years. He has just published the Taming Gaming book with its Family Video Game Database.