How to Stay Safe When Paying for Online Games

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As the online gaming industry continues to grow, developers are working on new ways to ensure that content stays fresh and interesting, and players remain excited and invested in playing. This is true for console and PC video games, as well as for online casinos, and one of the main ways that players can improve their experience is through in-game purchases.


How to Stay Safe When Paying for Online Games
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Of course, it is obvious that for online casino players, getting access to the big jackpot games comes with a cost – these are pay-to-play access games like slots, blackjack, and poker, so players will have to make a deposit to get involved. 

In console and PC video games, in-game transactions can include subscriptions for ongoing access, usually found in MMORPGs (Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games) like World of Warcraft. Other games might include purchasable upgrades to characters, weapons, or the environment, while games like Fortnite offer random loot crates to be purchased for the chance to get hold of rare items. 

With all these opportunities to spend real-world money in virtual games, it is important that you can stay safe when you are paying. Here are our top tips for staying safe when completing transactions in online gaming, so that you can concentrate on the excitement and have fun safely. 

Choose the Way You Pay

There are so many options available to pay for goods and services online, and these payment options are also available in the online gaming world. Each payment type has pros and cons, and you should consider your own financial situation and the availability of the payment option before making that decision. 

Credit and Debit Cards

Almost all transactions can be completed using a credit or debit card. Players need to share their card details with the payment provider, and transactions are processed quickly. 

Credit card payments are usually less risky because there are specific fraud prevention laws relating to purchases made with a credit card than with other methods, but debit cards are usually linked to a bank account which can mean that a fraudulent transaction will have a direct effect on your daily finances. 

PayPal

PayPal is an effective way to pay for online transactions because you only share your bank or card details with the secure PayPal server, and the game software does not receive any private information. 

Increasingly online games and retailers are accepting PayPal as a payment option, so this is a good choice for many people – just watch out for transaction fees that might apply to certain purchases. 

eWallets

eWallets are a good option for more secure transactions, as you transfer funds into them to be able to use for online transactions, and you do not need to share much in the way of personal information with the companies you are purchasing from. 

Not all sites accept eWallet transactions, and there are hundreds of options to choose from so you will want to stick with the more well-known options like Skrill or Neteller

Phone Bill

Mobile casinos often provide the option to pay for casino games using a phone bill, and this is a safe way to keep your finances away from the internet. 

Signing up to online casinos in this way means that you just get an extra charge on your phone bill, rather than paying directly using any other method. This way you will not need to provide any personal or sensitive data.

Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency might be the next big thing in investing portfolios but using it as a payment method is risky. 

Usually, the sites that accept Bitcoin and the like as a payment option are decentralised online sites, with no regulation. Transactions are untraceable, and there is no protection against fraud – so use at your own risk.

Bank Transfers

Transferring funds directly from your bank account has fallen out of favour as an online payment option, and it is not generally available for online video games. 

However, some online casinos will allow you to make deposits into your user account directly from your bank to top up your available balance. 

Look for a Licensed Site

Whether you are buying loot for your character in a video game or getting ready to spin the reels in a slot game, make sure that the site you are using is licensed, official, and secure. 

You can check the security of any website by looking at the address bar – if there is a little padlock symbol, it means that it is SSL encrypted, which is the industry standard for internet security. 

For online casinos, you also want to make sure that the site is licensed by a regulatory body. This means that they must meet certain standards to be able to provide gaming opportunities in your country, and these standards include data protection and security.

Reputable sites will have extra layers of security like two-factor authorisation, and they will be able to use recognised payment providers. 

 

Don’t Store Payment Details

Although it might be easier to store your payment details for a faster checkout, it is much safer not to. 

Data breaches do happen, and if your payment details are part of a data breach you could be looking at a long and complicated fraud process and risk your finances being open to misuse by others. 

Keeping a layer of distance between the site that you are purchasing from and your financial information will work better. 

If in Doubt, don’t.

If something looks too good to be true, it is. If a business is claiming to offer ultra-rare items for an unbelievable price, it is likely to be illicit if not illegal – and should be a red flag. 

In the same way, if anything about the transaction seems strange or makes you feel uncomfortable, move on, and don’t share any financial details with them. 

Think about what personal information you are sharing and be sure that you know who you are sharing them with. 


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