You are finally about to take out a longtime rival, claiming victory, or you are about to complete a royal flush when your ping increases and the game crashes. In this case, it is likely that you, or the game you are playing, have been hit by a denial of service (DoS) attack. But what does this mean?
A recent reportsaid that of all cyber attacks targeting the online gaming and gambling industries in the third quarter of 2020, more than a third focused on online gaming platforms. The attacks Denial of Service and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) capable of launching thousands of offline players or causing lag spikes that put them at a disadvantage over rivals are commonplace in games. But why are so many DDoS attacks happening and what can gamers do about it?
In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the reasons behind DDoS attacks on gamers, how they work, and why they’re so prevalent. We will conclude with some steps that players can take to protect themselves from DDoS and other types of attacks.
What are DDoS attacks?
The DDoS attacks they involve sending large volumes of junk traffic to a particular destination IP address, overloading it with data and slowing it down, or taking the network completely offline. To do this, attackers typically use a “botnet,” which is a group of malware-infected computers and devices that provide the computing power needed to initiate attacks, usually without the owner’s knowledge.
Why are they dangerous for players?
The most common cases of DDoS in games usually involve one of these different categories: blackmail of developers and publishers, a form of revenge against other players, competitive gain in online games.
In a world where anyone can lease a DoS or DDoS attack, players often find themselves stuck or with such slow connection speeds that their attacker can get through. gain a competitive advantage in the match oa take revenge on a rival. DDoS as a form of “digital doping” has grown so much that studies by Respawn, Activision and Ubisoft (creators of Apex Legends, Call of Duty and Rainbow Six Siege, respectively) have banned players from using DDoS attacks to cheat.
DDoS attacks on gamers aren’t just about money or cheating: Nation-state actors are also involved in the game, targeting the gaming community and distributors to launch attacks that distract and disguise “Supply chain attacks” broader and able to grant access to larger goals.
As annoying as it is for gamers, regular outages and downtime for service providers are a huge problem for companies affected by these attacks. THE Downtime can end up costing as much as $ 100,000 an hour, especially because the news of an attack
it usually spreads on social media, along with complaints and references to other times players have been disappointed with the provider. If a platform is very popular, the media will soon notice. In such a competitive market, hackers can do a lot of damage in minutes; resulting in loss of players and revenues from service providers and studios.
A few tips to stay safe while playing online
If your service provider or platform gets attacked, there isn’t much you can do. Here are five steps you can take for protect yourself from a targeted DDoS attack:
Keep your IP hidden. It is one of the best ways to protect yourself from a targeted DoS attack.
Regularly reset your IP address. The easiest way to do this is to unplug the router and leave it off for at least 10 minutes. You can also change your IP address by accessing the Windows and MacOs settings.
Do not click on external links that have been sent to you in chat. Even if they appear to be from someone you trust, check that it was actually sent by them before clicking. Malicious links can expose your IP address or install malware on your system.
Use a virtual private network (VPN). This essentially hides your IP address inside a virtual tunnel. All network traffic is routed to the VPN provider first, which means attackers will hit the VPN’s servers first, where they will be blocked even before they can harm you. As VPNs introduce another layer into the network path, they can cause higher lagging and ping. On the plus side, VPNs designed specifically for gamers have less impact and can even improve your connection by making you more secure. There are also some Free VPN that will protect you without having to pay a dime.
Update your home network. If the network hardware is provided by your ISP, it should be up to date and secure. If your hardware is over four years old or you bought your own, it’s time for an upgrade. Some routers have built-in protection against DoS attacks and other network intrusions. Some even have block lists that can immediately block known botnet IP addresses.
Update your security software. When using a PC, make sure your antivirus and security software are up to date and active.