6.9% of the surveyed gaming apps collect data point including contact numbers
As many as 77 games were developed in China followed by Japan and Vietnam
85% of the games capture at least one data point to understand user behaviour
According to a study conducted by cybersecurity firm Surfshark, some of the most popular mobile gaming apps including 8 Ball Pool, Gardenscapes, Subway Surfers, have a higher-than-average data hunger index.
Games such as Gardenscapes and 8 Ball Pool that are developed by Playrix and Miniclip consume data such as emails, text messages and share with third party advertisers.
In addition, Roblox, published by Roblox Corporation, collects 15 data points including search history, email addresses and location.
The study reveals that Subway Surfers, the 6th most popular game globally has a data hunger index of 57.6 which is 14.3% higher than the average game in our dataset. It collects a total of 12 unique data points, including coarse location. Like Gardenscapes, Subway Surfers also shares some data with third-party advertisers.
Surfshark stated, “Out of the 510 apps we analysed, 6.9% of them collected user contacts, 1.4% collected health data, 7.8% collected precise locations, and 3.5% collected emails or text messages.”
According to the cybersecurity firm, 85% of the games that were analysed capture at least one data point to understand user behaviour, while 64% collect social data. Additionally, 64% of the analysed games collect data on the basis of both these classifications.
Overall, the study states that the Asian countries dominate the gaming app market and accounts for almost 40% of the analysed apps. As many as 77 games were developed in China followed by Japan and Vietnam. Other major countries include South Korea, Singapore, and Hong Kong round out the list with 24,18, and 12 games, respectively.
In India, the government is upfront to protect data from getting leaked through these apps.
Further, these games will also not be able to offer financing on its own or through a third-party for users to play games on their platform.
Recently, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) conducted a raid to uncover hundreds of online gaming websites and companies allegedly remitting collections made to foreign countries, in violation of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), 1999.
Concerned about data breach, the Indian government has urged Indian fintech apps to block access to the non permissible online gaming platforms. With this, the government is trying to crack down operations of illegal online betting and gambling companies, with more focus on such companies based in foreign locations.