Over 2,100 accounts of registered sex offenders have been purged from online gaming platforms as part of “Operation: Game Over,” a first-of-its-kind initiative to protect children from predators on online gaming networks.
An additional 3,500 accounts of registered sex offenders purged from major online gaming companies earlier this year.
“The Internet is the crime scene of the 21st century, and we must ensure that online video game platforms do not become a digital playground for dangerous predators. That means doing everything possible to block sex offenders from using gaming systems as a vehicle to prey on underage victims,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “I applaud the online gaming companies that have purged registered sex offenders from their networks in time for the holiday season.
Together, we are making the online community a safer place for the children of New York.”
Under New York State’s Electronic Securing and Targeting of Online Predators Act (e-STOP) law, convicted sex offenders must register all of their e-mail addresses, screen names, and other Internet identifiers with the state. That information is then made available to certain websites so that they have the option to purge potential predators from their online worlds.
Gaming sites use multiple layers of defense in their fight against cybercriminals, predators and other bad actors. One of the more effective layers is the use of device reputation by iovation. By identifying the devices being used for chat spam, gold farming, account compromise and other abuses, gaming sites can stop them from opening new accounts under stolen identities to further cause damage to their brands and customers. In one particular case, a gaming publisher using iovation ReputationManager 360 took action against 1,000 fraudulent accounts shortly after implementing the fraud prevention service. In addition to keeping repeat offenders out, clients of iovation share fraud intelligence so that when a bad actor comes in from another global gaming site, the new site knows upfront that it’s dealing with high risk activity from the start.
Online gaming has come a long way. I’m pleased to see that most of the major gaming publishers are taking a serious stand against cybercriminals, predators, and the like, to keep honest consumers, players, and in many cases—our children—safe.