Smurfing – Inspect and Eradicate Concealed Assets From the Gaming Industry


What is smurfing, and how does it work in the gaming industry? Get all the answers briefly in this blog.Β  However, the need to implement AML screening and other vital methodologies is mandated with the growing number of crimes in the gaming industry. The sector often encounters identity theft and money laundering using smurfing methods crimes. However, it is crucial to protect such platforms where everything is handled online without exposing their identities. Read the article and explore smurfing and its role in the gaming industry.

Demonstrate Smurfing Briefly

Smurfing – a phrase used for black money proceedings by a group of criminals who aim to evade the legal systems. It is executed in the form of small chunks extracted from large transactions, presented in a way that is displayed below the reporting threshold. In other words, smurfing is an illegal operation with severe consequences, and not taking preventive measures can lead the companies to encounter a huge loss.Β 

The term involves illegal deposits into numerous bank accounts to dodge the government systems. Primarily, it’s a form of structuring that includes cumulative transactions to avoid the prerequisites of financial reporting. To combat the risk of smurfing in money laundering, AML screening should be integrated into the systems as it works by trapping all kinds of crimes and involves all necessary steps to stay ahead of fraudulent operations.

Workflow of Smurfing Money Laundering

Smurfing involves three primary steps including:

  1. PlacementΒ 
  2. LayeringΒ 
  3. Extraction or Integration

All three phases play a significant role in concealing the black money by presenting it as legal funds. In the placement phase, the imposter divides the large transaction into small chunks and places them in multiple bank accounts to avoid getting caught in the financial systems.Β 

However, in the layering phase, the illegal funds are separated from the original sources with the sophisticated layering approach, making it complicated for the financial systems to inspect and detect the illegally earned cash.Β 

Lastly, the cash is returned to the criminals in the integration stage. This phase includes multiple ways of recovering the money and presenting it as legally earned cash. Integration and extraction work in a way that does not draw attention to the funds getting back.

How to Eliminate Negative Effects of Smurfing from the Gaming Industry?Β 

Preventing the smurfing operation is crucial and requires swift approaches to protect the gaming industry. Professional and IT experts have worked on various strategies while inaugurating AI-powered identity verification to combat these imposters. The automated tools work on the following principles:

  1. Accounts can only be created against a unique identity
  2. Official documents are required to submit for account verification
  3. Verification systems will authenticate the identities and will proceed further.

This approach makes it challenging for imposters to create fake accounts, which affects the platform decorum. Moreover, it will work as a deterrent against cheats and illegal activities, and at the same time, it also offers robust security protocols.

Smurfing in the Gaming ZonesΒ 

In this sector, the term is used primarily in online multiplayer video games and is a practice where players can use counterfeit identities or smurf accounts, presenting themselves as inexperienced individuals. There are debates on defending this tactic, labeling it as a way of helping beginners. However, it is an illegal activity and distorts the game balance. Smurfing in the gaming sector is a disputable attempt that should be addressed and prevented to protect the online gaming industry.Β 

Effects of Smurfing on Gaming Platforms

When Smurfs, an experienced player, faces off against a lower-level participant, it is referred to as a one-sided match, negatively impacting players who encounter Smurfing. It leaves the participants irritated and hopeless as they have nothing to gain. In such cases, it refrains the players from using the platforms, seeking it as an unfair place to invest time. Therefore, taking the necessary steps to prevent it is mandatory. Learn how it can be eliminated in the next section.

Explore Best Practices to Prevent Smurfing from the Gaming Sector

Let’s dive into the primary fundamentals that are implemented to combat smurfing attacks in the gaming sector:

  • Digital Identity Verification Systems

These systems are AI-driven and emerge as a powerful tool against fake identities. The digital ID check method requires all the necessary information, including name, address, and government-issued documents, to authenticate the entity’s legitimacy. Also, it ensures that each entity holds a unique identity number to avoid replication and the chance of impersonation.

  • AML ScreeningΒ 

AML monitoring is primarily implemented in games involving money-related tournaments. This ensures that no fake information or illegal funds are used to transfer through this platform.Β 

  • Sanction List ChecksΒ 

The primary role of sanction list checks is to ensure that the entities who are enrolling in the gaming platform are not previously charged with any money laundering crimes or other illegal operation.

Final Statement

Promoting a healthy environment is a requirement in today’s digital era, as everything operates online, and there is a high risk of becoming a victim of a digital scam. However, robust identity verification approaches, including AML screening, play a vital role in combating smurfing and provide players with a safe platform to invest their money and time.

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