Game development is an intricate, time-consuming process, and the work doesn’t stop after a title is released. To keep players engaged, game companies must continually push out new, cutting-edge features and ensure nothing less than world-class performance and 100% uptime, all while ensuring that cyber attacks don’t compromise game integrity or the user experience.

Traditionally, game platforms have prioritized user experience over cybersecurity, fearing that robust security and authentication measures, such as SSL/TLS, would increase latency and cause user attrition. However, as gaming grew into the world’s most popular and lucrative form of entertainment, hackers began heavily targeting the industry, negatively impacting game performance and integrity.

Cybersecurity: Beating hackers at their own game

DDoS attacks have long plagued online games. Over the Christmas holidays in 2013, hacker Austin Thompson launched a series of DDoS attacks against popular gaming sites, including Steam, PlayStation Network, Microsoft Xbox, Riot Games, and League of Legends. Thompson’s antics inspired throngs of copycats; end-of-year DDoS attacks on online gaming platforms became so common that days before Christmas 2018, the FBI, in partnership with UK and Netherlands law enforcement agencies, preemptively seized 15 domains belonging to DDoS-for-hire services.

Unfortunately, this virtual raid didn’t quell the growth of denial of service attacks. Kaspersky found an 18% year-over-year increase in DDoS attacks during Q2 2019, and a 32% increase in applicationlayer attacks, a highly sophisticated form of DDoS attack that utilizes malicious bots to attack specific applications.

Gold farming & powerleveling

Taking over legitimate accounts isn’t the only way attackers can steal virtual assets. In “gold farming” and “powerleveling,” attackers program bots to play continuously and amass virtual items for the purpose of resale. These bots consume game resources and degrade performance, alienate legitimate players, promote user attrition, and cost game publishers up to 40% of their in-game monthly revenues.

Accelerating your game

Just as success in real estate is about location, location, location, winning in the gaming industry is about latency, latency, latency. No other app may be as sensitive to latency as a game. Visitors to a news site may be willing to wait a few seconds for an article or a video to load. A delay that long within a game is completely unacceptable. In an FPS game, the window in which players can successfully execute an action is measured in thousandths of a second. Even in turn-based and world-simulation games, players expect a real-world, real-time feel. Game elements must respond instantaneously when clicked, and videos in eSports games must load immediately and play seamlessly.

Building apps: Staying in the game without breaking the bank

In this dynamic, incredibly competitive market, game development companies, most of which are small businesses, are under intense pressure to develop and release quality products as soon as possible while keeping their internal expenses low.

These small developers must focus on developing, building, and enhancing games; they simply cannot afford to get bogged down in underlying infrastructure management, such as configuring servers. Migrating to infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platforms, such as AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud Platform, allows game companies to replace capital expenditures on hardware with lower operational expenditures. Developers can also take advantage of the flexibility and scalability benefits of the cloud.

Game development is an intricate, time-consuming process, and the work doesn’t stop after a title is released. To keep players engaged, game companies must continually push out new, cutting-edge features and ensure nothing less than world-class performance and 100% uptime, all while ensuring that cyber attacks don’t compromise game integrity or the user experience. 

Download this white paper to read about:

  • Evolving DDoS attacks in the gaming industry
  • Main factors that cause game latency and ways to optimize them
  • Scaling game applications in the cloud at lower costs

You will learn how game developers can enhance performance and security, reduce time to market, minimize expenses, and free up developers so that they can focus on their core competency: building games.

To read full download the whitepaper:
Enabling Secure, Fast, and Immersive Gaming Experiences

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