Pokémon Go has just launched in the UK and parts of Europe now, so I (along with millions of others) am finally getting to see what all the fuss is about.
So far, there has been many cases of peoples personal safety and security being compromised as a result of playing Pokémon Go. It’s unfortunate that we can never have too much of a good thing in this world, because there will always be a real life Team Rocket out to ruin the fun. So we’ve decided to put together this short guide to keep you all safe.
Firstly, what exactly are the threats that you face from Pokémon Go? Here’s a few…
- Trojanized versions of the app
- Pokémon Go cheaters switching their location to find other Pokémon
- People being robbed after being lured to Pokéspots
- People getting access to other data on your phone
That’s just a few, you can read more about possible threats here.
So what can you do to stay safe playing Pokémon Go? There’s a number of ways you can keep safe, and much of it is common sense. But if you want a list of technical answers, then check the list below.
Staying safe playing Pokémon Go
- Avoid downloading Pokémon Go from unofficial marketplaces, as attackers can use these sites to deliver malware disguised as legitimate apps
- Install the Pokémon Go update that removes the request for full access to Google accounts
- Stay away from game-cheating tools, as they could be fraudulent or may contain malware
- Keep your smartphone’s firmware updated to prevent vulnerabilities from being exploited
- Use strong and unique passwords for your Pokémon Go account
- Pay close attention to the permissions that apps request
- Install a suitable mobile security app, such as Norton, to protect your device and data
Of course, there’s still the case of keeping yourself safe physically. For this, we suggest traveling in a group if you’re outside with the intent to play Pokémon Go. Also, avoid random online meetups, and be wary of Pokéspots and Pokémon Gyms that may lead to danger. Trust your instincts. If you’re eager to get around more random people to enjoy Pokémon Go, then try to only stick with official meet-up groups that have trusted organizers. When in doubt, ask a friend or family member for their judgement.
Also, take the games advice seriously and beware of your surroundings. Don’t play if you have to drive or cross the road.
Stay safe and enjoy Pokémon Go. Watch out for the real life Team Rocket trying to ruin our fun.