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Gaming Express - The biggest weakness of cloud gaming – and how to overcome it

HGC Insight Cloud gaming 2

When we talk about gaming it is easy to get side-lined and amazed by the industry’s exponential growth during a short space of time. But for such a large and fast expanding market, gaming is still vulnerable to one of the biggest threats in the modern world: cyberattacks.

The rapid growth of the market is outshining the dangers of poor and unsecure connections and user practices, including unauthorised transactions, data theft, identity theft, phishing and malware.

To put in into perspective, think tank Omdia, anticipates cloud gaming revenues will hit $12 billion by 2025. It predicts that in 2021 alone, the revenue generated from cloud gaming will reach $4 billion, a growth rate of 188% compared to 2020. It would be a shame to hinder such growth by implementing weak cyber strategies.

The gaming industry has some great examples of how to protect in other industries that have historically been seen as high risk such as finance and banking. One of the biggest lessons those industries have learnt, is that cyber threats will never go away, so you have to constantly fight back and develop the right security systems for your business.

Building on that, I came across an interesting piece of advice from PwC which basically says that to deliver a safe gaming environment, gaming providers need a strategy that goes beyond what services to offer and how often to offer them.

This must be a strategy that considers the technologies, processes and governance structures that will ensure players and operator are well protected from online threats.

What are the things gaming organisations – and indeed, everyone – should be looking at? First, get to know your players and users, the eyeballs of your service.

Just like any business, getting to know your audience will give you an extremely important insight into how to protect them. This valuable information will help you steer the wheel on your cyber priorities, ensuring players trust the platform they are using. Plus, keep an eye on up and coming technologies and how the market is embracing them. Security must be thought from the get-go and not something looked at once hands are on deck to build the systems.

Like PwC says, technologies used I the front and back offices need to be aligned to provide a secure and seamless player experience, in person and virtually.

To protect data, gaming businesses need to understand what the data is, where it is stored, who might want to steal or interfere with it, and how it could be accessed. To safeguard these assets, a good way to look t it is to implement a risk-based approach to compliance. This means considering and managing risks across people, processes, distribution and data.

As gaming evolves and becomes ever more consoleless, gaming providers need to work closer not only with each other, but also regulators and governments.

I have shared before that my view is that gaming could become bigger than other streaming services like the music or cinema industries. However, there is a silver lining to this.

As the gaming sector – rapidly – changes, all the considerations around cybersecurity I mentioned above, not extensively I must admit, must be taken into account by all.

And by all I mean not only the gaming companies but the companies they work with like us at HGC Global Communications.

We are an expert in servicing the OTT world, and have a specific range of customer-built solutions for our gaming customers and partners. Of the many things we do as a one-stop provider, we are an aggregator that is directly connected to local leading mobile network operators (MNO) and internet service providers (ISP) on the IP network. We have built security into all our systems and have certified that all networks are safe, robust and resilient to threats. Cybersecurity is at the heart of what we do and we built it from day zero.

If you wish to explore how HGC and we can help you expand your capabilities to handle the growing needs of cloud-based gaming, feel free to drop me a direct email on marcello.brescia@hgc.com.hk or connect me via LinkedIn.

In the meantime, let me know in the comments what you think the cybersecurity challenges for gaming companies are today.

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