Cheating, hacking and piracy are challenges for 81% of esports stakeholders, with both esports streamers and event organizers reporting the issues as moderate or major concerns.

Fraud challenges in esports

The "Cheating, hacking, piracy, and esports: critical steps needed to protect the industry" report from Verimatrix and Omdia analyzed the state of esports security. Esports events — virtual or in-person video game competitions — have risen in popularity since their inception, with a total esports revenue of $1.6 billion in 2021.

Security issues have accompanied the rise in revenue, with fraud challenges like cheating and esports piracy affecting the industry. When it comes to piracy, 55% of esports stakeholders name it a moderate or major concern to their organization.

Esports cybersecurity threats

The report outlined emerging threats to the esports industry. In addition to fraud, esports streamers and event organizers see non-fungible token (NFT) and blockchain-based games as potential cyberattack vectors. Eighty-one percent of survey respondents indicated that they wish to increase their security arrangements in the next twelve months, but the report identified obstacles in the path towards esports security.

A lack of cybersecurity awareness presents a challenge to the industry, with 50% of stakeholders unaware of anti-piracy technology. Nearly 40% of respondents do not use a security service, according to the report, and 42% of respondents signaled they would want to pay less than $5,000 for security services.

For more esports security report findings, click here.