As the virtual and physical realms collide, the chances of them converging in serious and dangerous methods increases. This is best exemplified by Pokemon GO, Nintendo’s latest smartphone game addition to the widely acclaimed and popular Pokemon franchise. The game employs the capabilities of a user’s smartphone and Google Maps to position creatures in real world locations, such as churches, parks, campuses and even the White House. The game directs people to specific locations to battle in gyms, collect eggs and Pokeballs in Pokestops that helps users capture more Pokemon.
According to Trend Micro’s blog post, Pokémon Go: Real World Risks of Apps, while the game is a fresh way of approaching augmented reality, it has garnered unforeseen risks in both the physical and virtual spheres. With reports indicating trespassing as players attempt to capture Pokemon on other’s private property and Pokemon GO enabling full access to users’ Google accounts, this raises the concern of future potential cybersecurity implications.
It is vital for users to understand the risks involved and take the necessary steps to protect themselves. The launch of Pokemon GO and its frenzied popularity may very well be the hallmark of future augmented reality games to come, and while it is imperative that users have the most immersive experience, safety should always be of the topmost priority.