eGamingCheats,Hacks and Cyberattacks – E-Sports

Cheats,Hacks and Cyberattacks – E-Sports


The widespread internet connectivity has been fueling the new cyberspace age, with multiple advanced platforms and apps, cyberspace has become a dimension of its own. Online gaming has witnessed a new growth spectrum since the pandemic times. The number of online gamers in India grew to 421 million in 2022 and is expected to reach 442 million by 2023. Children and adults, everyone engages in online gaming, and hence being aware of the safeguards regarding online gaming.



E-sports in India have seen a massive boom and rise, mainly from mobile online gaming. This boon has initiated a new interest in the gaming sector as now the players can represent India at global tournaments and the Olympics, Commonwealth Games, and Asian Games. This brings a huge opportunity for young players to bring laurels to their country. The Ministry of Sports has taken over the aspects of E-Sports in India and is working towards creating protocols, guidelines, advisories etc., for the players. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology secures the digital rights of the citizen under various bills and policies, such as the Intermediary Guidelines for Online Gaming and Social Media, Digital Media Ethics Code, Digital Personal Data Protection Bill and Telecommunication Bill. The draft Digital India Bill will go far into the future to safeguard digital rights in Indian Cyberspace.


Hacks and Cheats

Since the advent of iconic games such as Atari, Pac-Man and Mario, it has been seen that gaming has become an integral part of the entertainment segment of our lives. These games have seen a transition from PCs to consoles and now to mobile phones. With every transition, the industry has grown exponentially. The gamers community has grown during this period, resulting in more elaborate industry development, where cheat codes and hacks also exist. Cheat codes are essentially phrases or codes which can give the player better performance as compared to others, these are often used in story-based games like GTA to make the experience more exciting and funny, however with repeated use of cheat codes, the game can get corrupt, thus leading to data loss. In some cases, cheat codes also provide a back door entry to bad actors in one’s system. Hacks are an elaborate addon of the game, which makes the game different from the original in different ways like – graphics, sound effects, characters, weapon/skill upgrades and many more.


Cybersecurity in Online Gaming  

Cybersecurity is an integral part of online gaming, and bad actors often target gamers for financial reasons and sometimes due to personal issues. The following forms of attacks are seen on the gaming sector –

  • Pro Players
    • Ransomware: Cybercriminals use malware to lock game profiles and save data, then demand a ransom leading to Data loss and Financial loss
    • Illegal cheats: Players buy aimbots, wallhacks and more from underground forums
    • Info stealers: Malware used to steal multiple account credentials (social media, credit accounts and others)
  • Game companies
    • Social engineering scams: Accounts stolen from legitimate players leading to Loss of resources and Damaged reputation
    • The underground market of accounts: Continued sale of elite accounts
    • Illegal gambling: Underground betting compromises game and player integrity
  • Tournaments
    • DDoS attack: Performance issues and connectivity can be ransomed
    • Exploit game servers: Vulnerable servers are targeted, and games disrupted
    • Match fixing: Players deliberately lose for money, compromise competition


After analysing underground esports markets and seeing the services and technology available, there is no doubt that the esports industry will be heavily targeted by malicious actors going forward. Luckily, gaming companies and tournament organisers are already aware of their status as targets and are always on the lookout for new cheating techniques and tools. New security features are also being developed for the industry, as well as different anti-cheat services dedicated to keeping esports fair. But, for all the targets involved, there needs to be a more comprehensive awareness of the specific threats involved in these competitions. This can help them build better defences and find more effective security solutions.



The online gaming industry is witnessing a boon in contemporary times, but along with that, the magnitude of cyber threats is also on the rise. Safeguarding the gaming industry is pertinent due to the data hosted and consumed by it, primarily being financial data. This poses a huge risk of vulnerability and financial scams. Emerging technologies have been redefining cyberspace and the online gaming industry, especially with the influence of Metaverse. We must be ready with prevention mechanisms to safeguard the future by creating robust safety and reporting mechanisms.



Abhishek Singh, Lead – Policy and Advocacy, CyberPeace


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