How to ensure a secure metaverse in your organization

When companies deploy their own metaverse, it’s important to consider how they protect users and data. This involves addressing a range of cybersecurity concerns in the metaverse, from communications security and data accuracy to authentication and privacy.

Follow these four steps to ensure the secure use of Metaverse in your organization.

1. Identify any vulnerabilities that might exist

Keep a list of all vulnerabilities and risks that may arise from them. Notable vulnerabilities include the following:

  • headset vulnerabilities;
  • location spoofing;
  • impersonation; and
  • Problems with the hosting Metaverse platform.

Before you take over the Metaverse, appoint someone to be responsible for security. They are responsible for understanding the various vulnerabilities that come with the Metaverse. Job responsibilities include documenting questions and problems as they arise.

After you create a list of vulnerabilities, create a schedule to regularly review and update the list. If the person responsible for security sees an issue and recommends delaying the launch of a Metaverse service, they must have the authority and responsibility to do so.

2. Develop Metaverse Terms of Service

Create strong terms and conditions to build a thriving community. This includes the following:

  • Administrative hotline. Ensure customers have access to platform admins who can intervene to ban or ban members from the metaverse.
  • Unique skins for users. To prevent or minimize avatar takeover, require each member in the metaverse to use a unique avatar skin – possibly via non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to make duplication more difficult. This also minimizes identity fraud.

3. Moderate your organization’s metaverse

Once the metaverse is up and running, create a moderation team that provides:

  • Active Surveillance. Let engaged employees examine conversations, tones and reactions and intervene before potential problems arise.
  • Customer Service for Users. Providing great customer service is a good way to ensure first-time and returning users are following the rules, reducing risk to all property and other users.

4. Create a Metaverse security and privacy policy

Before making any service or product accessible in your Metaverse property, provide users with clear security and privacy policies that they must follow. Some of these may already be part of the Metaverse platform hosting provider’s policies. However, as a property owner, you are responsible for your customers. Expand the hosting platform’s policies with your own based on the features and services your property offers. The guidelines should address the following:

  • user data. Detail how you collect sensor, location, physiological, and social data. The policy must state what data is collected and for how long, as well as users’ rights to access, download and delete personal data.
  • Communication. An augmented reality universe includes physical-to-virtual and virtual-to-virtual communication. In a VR universe, communication is immersive, virtual-to-virtual. Communications—both solicited and unsolicited—and user rights for both must be articulated in a policy.
  • Property. Content generated by users in the Metaverse can be diverse, unique, and monetizable. These are referred to as virtual digital goods and include NFTs and avatar skins. Malicious users impersonating false identities can wreak havoc and distrust of property by stealing other users’ virtual digital goods and claiming their property. This could have a tangible business impact due to customer dissatisfaction. Use asset ownership tracking technologies like blockchain to manage content ownership.

As the metaverse becomes more prevalent, it will become a higher-value target for attackers, and the associated security challenges will intensify. Being aware from the start and taking proactive steps to build a secure metaverse will go a long way in containing these threats.

This was last published in Aug 2022

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