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Widespread Cheating in Multiplayer Online Games Drives Gamers in Asia Pacific Away

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Widespread Cheating in Multiplayer Online Games Drives Gamers in Asia Pacific Away

Gamers in Asia Pacific are most likely to have their multiplayer gaming experience negatively impacted by other players cheating, according to new online research by Irdeto. Of gamers surveyed in China, 77% said that this happens frequently, followed by South Korea at 68%, above the global average of 59%. The Irdeto Global Gaming Survey of 9,436 consumers also indicated that gamers in South Korea (88%) and China (85%) feel most strongly about securing multiplayer games online against other players gaining an unfair advantage through cheating — higher than the global average of 76%. This indicates a clear and direct correlation between consumers who have been negatively impacted by cheating and the level of importance they place on securing these games.

Of the consumers surveyed online across six different countries, including China, Germany, Japan, South Korea, UK and US, the Asia Pacific (APAC) markets showed the highest likelihood of discontinuing a multiplayer game online if they thought other players were cheating to gain an unfair advantage.

Of online gamers surveyed in South Korea, 86% are likely to stop playing, followed by China (81%) and Japan (74%). The survey also found that cheating in online multiplayer games potentially dilutes the value of the game and can result in both lower spending on in-game content and in consumers choosing to play other games that are more secure instead with 48% of gamers globally saying they would buy less in game content as a result. This suggests a clear impact on revenues for game publishers if they do not adequately protect online multiplayer games from cheating.

Interestingly, the survey also found that in China, South Korea and Japan, where cheating is deemed to be particularly prominent, there is a proportion of gamers who seem to have accepted this fact and are presumably more willing to spend money to beat the cheaters in a game. Eighteen percent of online gamers in China and 17% in both South Korea and Japan say that they would buy more in-game content if they knew other gamers were cheating, compared to the global average of 14%.

“Failure to secure games against cheating will affect every player in the ecosystem, from users to publishers,” said ReinhardBlaukovitsch, Managing Director of Denuvo, Irdeto. “Furthermore, the global nature of games means that it doesn’t matter where the cheating is taking place, as it has the potential to negatively impact other gamers around the world, and this sets a big challenge for game publishers.”

“With the global gaming market estimated to be worth $128.5 billion by 2020, there is huge competition and a growing opportunity for game publishers to increase their market share. However, if game publishers do not take cheating seriously and fail to provide a secure environment for gamers all over the world, they may lose consumer confidence and ultimately suffer revenue losses,” added Elmar Fischer, Sales Director of Denuvo, Irdeto.

Despite the negative impact that cheating has on the gaming industry, it is still widespread in multiplayer online games because of some gamers who choose to put their experience and desire to win before all else. China (41%), Japan (24%) and South Korea (23%) saw the highest proportion of online gamers globally, who always, often or sometimes use third-party tools to cheat in multiplayer games online. This indicates a clear country-specific correlation, where APAC gamers who are most likely to be negatively impacted by cheating, are also most likely to cheat in multiplayer games online. These findings suggest that there appears to be an ‘if you can’t beat them, join them’ attitude among some gamers who will take action to fight back against cheaters, even if that means cheating themselves.

“APAC gamers feel that not enough is being done to protect their multiplayer online gaming experience from cheating and malicious plugins, to the point that some are even willing to cheat themselves in order to fight back,” said Rory O’Connor, Senior Vice President of Cybersecurity Services, Irdeto. “Game publishers should invest in security strategies which prevent hackers in multiplayer games from manipulating and distorting data or code to gain an advantage over other gamers or bypass in-game transactions. The brands that aim to give gamers an enjoyable experience and fair play, will surely prevail in an increasingly competitive online gaming sector.”

The success of any game title is dependent upon the ability of the title to operate as the publisher intended. Cheating on gaming platforms can distort virtual in-game economies and can be used to manipulate or bypass in-game micro-transactions, resulting in a less enjoyable experience for gamers who play fair. Denuvo’s anti-cheat technology prevents hackers in multiplayer games from manipulating and distorting data and code to gain an advantage over other gamers. This prevents dilution of the value of the game for the user and the game studio.

Click here to download the full report on the survey results: https://resources.irdeto.com/irdeto-global-gaming-survey

Methodology

The survey was commissioned by Irdeto and conducted online from February 27, 2018 to March 14, 2018 by YouGov Plc. with 9,436 adults (aged 18+), of which 5911 were gamers, in six countries. The countries surveyed were: China, Germany, Japan, South Korea, UK and US. Figures have been weighted appropriately to be representative of adults in each country (e.g. nationally representative, urban representative, or online representative). The overall ‘global’ figures have been given an even weighting for each country to produce an ‘average’ value.

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Bitcoin, ether hit fresh highs

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Bitcoin, ether hit fresh highs 1

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Bitcoin hit a fresh high in Asian trading on Saturday, extending a two-month rally that saw its market capitalisation cross $1 trillion a day earlier.

The world’s most popular cryptocurrency rose to an record $56,620, taking its weekly gain to 18%. It has surged more than 92% this year.

Bitcoin’s gains have been fuelled by evidence it is gaining acceptance among mainstream investors and companies, such as Tesla Inc, Mastercard Inc and BNY Mellon.

Ether, the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization and daily volume, hit a record $2,040.62, for a weekly gain of about 12%.

Ether is the digital currency or token that facilitates transactions on the ethereum blockchain. In the crypto world, the terms ether and ethereum have become interchangeable.

Ether futures contracts launched on derivatives exchange CME earlier this month.

(Reporting by Vidya Ranganathan; Editing by William Mallard)

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World Bank pushing for standard vaccine contracts, more disclosure from makers

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World Bank pushing for standard vaccine contracts, more disclosure from makers 2

By Andrea Shalal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The World Bank is working to standardize COVID-19 vaccine contracts that countries are signing with drug makers, and is pushing manufacturers to be more open about where doses are headed, as it races to get more vaccines to poor countries, the bank’s president said on Friday.

World Bank President David Malpass told Reuters he expected the bank’s board to have approved $1.6 billion in vaccine funding for 12 countries, including the Philippines, Bangladesh, Tunisia and Ethiopia, by the end of March, with 30 more to follow shortly thereafter.

The bank is working with local governments to identify and fill gaps in distribution capacity, after they purchase vaccines under a $12 billion World Bank program, and also to standardize the contracts they are signing with manufacturers, he said.

The bank’s International Finance Corp, its private financing arm, has $4 billion to invest in expanding existing production plants or building new ones, including in developed countries, but needs more data on where current production is headed, he said.

“We are eager to be investing in new capacity, but it’s hard to do because you don’t know how much of the existing capacity is already committed to the various off-takers,” Malpass said in an interview with Reuters. New or expanded plants could be used to produce other types of vaccinations in the future, he said.

The bank’s funds could be used to expand plants in advanced economies, if the production was earmarked for developing nations, he said.

Malpass welcomed Friday’s pledge by the Group of Seven rich countries to intensify cooperation on the pandemic, saying it could help jump-start deliveries of vaccines to poorer countries, which are lagging far behind rich countries in getting shots in arms.

Data compiled by Our World In Data, a scientific online publication, showed Israel was leading the world in COVID-19 vaccinations, with nearly 82 of 100 people vaccinated, while India and Bangladesh reported less than one person per 100, Many African countries have not started at all.

Malpass said he was heartened by news about new vaccines coming down the road, and about Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE seeking permission to store their vaccine at higher temperatures, which would ease another obstacle to deliveries in lower-income countries.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Heather Timmons and Leslie Adler)

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Google to evaluate executive performance on diversity, inclusion

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Google to evaluate executive performance on diversity, inclusion 3

By Paresh Dave

(Reuters) – Alphabet Inc’s Google will evaluate the performance of its vice presidents and above on team diversity and inclusion starting this year, the company said on Friday in one of several responses to concerns about its treatment of a Black scientist.

Timnit Gebru, co-leader of Google’s ethical artificial intelligence research team, said in December that Google abruptly fired her after she criticized its diversity efforts and threatened to resign.

Alphabet and Google Chief Executive Sundar Pichai ordered a review of the situation. While Google declined to share specific findings, the company announced on Friday it will engage human resources specialists during sensitive employee departures.

Pichai in June said that by 2025, Google aims to have 30% more of its leaders come from underrepresented groups, with a focus on Black, Latinx and Native American leaders in the United States and female technical leaders globally. About 96% of Google’s U.S. leaders at the time were white or Asian, and 73% globally were men.

As a result of the investigation, the company also expanded a commitment announced in June to devote more resources to retaining and promoting existing employees, including by expanding a team addressing disputes among workers and their managers.

The diversity component of executive performance reviews was not previously announced, and the company did not immediately share details about what would be measured and how pay would be affected.

Alphabet for years had rejected proposals from shareholders and employees to set diversity goals and tie executive pay to them.

Irene Knapp, a former Google employee who advocated for one such proposal at a 2018 shareholder meeting, said on Friday, “I am pleased that they met our demand from 2018, which was a bare minimum that should have been easy to do immediately.”

Evaluating managers on diversity goals is becoming more commonplace. McDonald’s Corp on Thursday tied executive bonuses to diversity.

(Reporting by Paresh Dave; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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