One of the biggest concerns for mobile gamers is the amount of data apps collect from users. A recent analysis by VPN company Surfshark aimed to uncover the truth about data acquisition, analysing the top games across the top 60 countries. During the study, 510 apps appeared, and data was analysed based on user identities and tracking data across websites. A further 20% was added in scores for any games that shared data with third-party advertisers.
The study found the average “hunger index” score was 26.9. However, NetEase’s Eggy Party was highlighted for scoring 35, 30.2% higher than the average. The game collects sensitive data such as names, precise locations and phone numbers. Roblox recorded a score of 30, above the average score, with the game collecting email addresses, search history, coarse location data, and more. Playrix’s Gardenscapes scored a whopping 42, 56.3% above the average score. The game tracks email and text messages and shares information with third parties.
Data-hungry games around the world
The study also analysed the top data-hungry games played in several countries. The analysis revealed that Canada scored the highest in its playing of data-hungry games, with scores 14% above the average. Other top-scorers included Germany, Austria, Hungary, and the United States. However, Player One reports that the country producing “the most data-hungry mobile games” is actually France. The lowest scores on the hunger index chart came out of countries such as China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, and Vietnam.
This full report provides detailed insights into the type of data specific video games are recording and sharing with third-party advertisers. The findings will be concerning for many gamers, and it remains to be seen what kind of impact this report will have in the broader gaming community moving forward.