According to Valve boss Game Newell, the top issue dealt with by Steam support staff is account hijacking. Whether the threat is scurrilous blackguards hacking passwords or nefarious scoundrels tricking users into giving up account details, a service as integral to the gaming infrastructure as Steam can't afford to skimp on security. As the platform grows ever more ubiquitous, Valve has bumped up the tightness of their account access with the unveiling of a new guard system for Steam, plainly enough titled Steam Guard.
Above: Purchases like Portal 2 will be more secure for accounts behind Steam Guard
With the launch of Steam Guard, enabled by Intel's imminent 2nd-Generation CoreT processors, account management will be physically linked to a single PC. Anyone on another machine who tries to access or alter your details will have to get your approval first, which is tied to a constantly-updated passcode generated by the processor. If that sounds like a lot to get your head around, rest assured that most hackers – a suspicious and cowardly lot, lest we forget – ought to have similar problems.
Above: Just two of the products not to purchase if you want to enjoy Steam Guard's protection
Users wanting to beef up their Steam security should beware they don't end up with the wrong Steam Guard. Valve's Steam Guard does not provide vaporized sinus cleansing (unlike the Vicks Steam Guard); neither does it sterilize microwave ovens (unlike the Munchkin Steam Guard). Hell, just leave it to Valve to bring the service to you. The company currently provides the service for third parties to incorporate into their Steam apps, reducing Friend Code-esque and user-end headaches altogether. Thank Gabe for that, eh?
Mar 3, 2011
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