A review of privacy data by VPNoverview, a website dedicated to privacy, cybersecurity, and internet freedom, ranked Xbox as the worst offender for gaming privacy policies. While this study doesn’t focus solely on gaming companies, VPNoverview has compiled a list of four companies comparing the most privacy policies in gaming.
VPNoverview is a website launched for the first time to inform about VPN services in the Dutch market. It has since become a hub of information with a team of cybersecurity and privacy professionals working to provide information on topics including online security, internet freedom, privacy, and VPNs. A VPN is a network tool that can be used to enjoy games or other entertainment with better privacy and security.
The study focused on determining which companies offered the worst and most difficult-to-read privacy policies. With billions of people owning gaming consoles, accepting legally binding documents to access games is an important and largely overlooked aspect of gaming. Gaming services can be hacked like any other and user information can be compromised. VPNoverview’s review includes measuring policy readability and length and ranking them into five categories: readability, difficulty, words per sentence, characters per word, and overall readability score.
The worst overall score went to Xbox with 26.1 points, closely followed by Nintendo with 26.7. The other two contenders, Wizards of the Coast and PlayStation, fared much better with scores of third and fourth, respectively. Unlike the other three, Wizards of the Coast is known primarily for its tabletop and card games but also owns video game productions, such as that of horror game studio Skeleton.
To give a sense of scope on the scores in a bigger picture, VPNoverview also listed the 20 worst companies in the business with points ranging from 2.83 to 27.01. While Xbox and Nintendo fit within the bottom 20 overall, they managed quite well compared to some other entertainment brands. Netflix was worse than any of them with a score of 23.72 and worst of all was Disney with a score of 2.83. Although it is not listed as a gaming company, Disney is also involved in releasing games. Compared to those atrocious privacy scores, the PlayStation’s 33.93 doesn’t look so bad anymore, as indicated by its 57th place out of 100.
VPNoverview also points out key issues with each policy. With the Xbox, reviewers wondered why the console was suitable for 7-year-olds if the policy required more than 26 minutes of reading at a college grade level. Nintendo’s activity tracking was a concern, which could be due to AR games. Pikmin Bloom And Pokemon Go. For Wizards of the Coast, the separating factor was audio data collection, and while PlayStation’s policy was considered “pretty solid,” it still raised some general privacy concerns.
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