Epic Games, the creators of the hugely popular video game Fortnite, are once again issuing a stark warning to their players regarding the substantial risks associated with using free V-Bucks generators, buying accounts or attempting to use V-Bucks hacking websites.
Fortnite is a free-to-play Battle Royale game available Microsoft Windows, MacOS, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and as of recently iPhone too.
The game features 100 players in solo, duo, or in squads of 3 or 4 that engage in battle till only one team remains.
Players are parachuted on an island without weapons, ammo and armor, and need to look for loot, find cover, and gather material so they can shelter themselves from attacks and stay alive.
The safe area on the island is shrinking little by little, until only one small circle remains. Players need to stay away from the approaching storm and stay in the circle so they don't die.
What really distinct Fortnite from other Battle Royale games is its building system and the fact that you can break each object into materials that you can use as stairs, to build shelter as well as protect yourself from gunfire.
Although the game is free to play, it does support itself from microtransactions, by allowing players to get V-Bucks that can be used to buy cosmetic items and Battle Passes.
If you've been playing the most popular Battle Royale game of 2018 for some time now, you might have noticed that some of the other players look much cooler than you. That's because they've been using their V-Bucks to get their favorite in-game items and make their avatar stand out.
V-Bucks are Fortnite's in-game currency which you can use to buy tons of stuff starting from your favorite Fortnite skins to emotes, outfits, and even Battle Passes that can be used to unlock more cosmetic items.
One thing you cannot buy is items that will give you a competitive advantage. The items that are available only have a fashion purpose and nothing more.
V-Bucks are a way for the game to make money, since we all know that unlike Save the World (Fortnite's PvE mode); Fortnite Battle Royale is free-to-play.
Scammers can target users in many different ways and through multiple channels. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms are a perfect place for scammers to target younger audiences and scam them by promising free or reduced-price V-Bucks.
With the growing popularity of the game, the number of scammer increases too and there is no way of stopping them anytime soon.
You can find different forms of Fortnite V-Bucks scams out there. Some of the common forms are replies to YouTube videos on popular Fortnite channels, like those of Ninja, Dr. Lupo, Myth and many more. What most scammers would do is share a link to their websites, along with Fortnite gameplay videos or tips plus the promise of free or discounted V-Bucks that you can get by visiting the link they shared.
There are tons of obvious scam videos that can be found on YouTube, most of which are from stolen or hacked accounts.
What these videos usually promise are free V-Bucks and instructions on how to get them. Some of these fake accounts and channels have thousands of active subscribers and what they promise each of them are easy ways to get free or at least discounted in-game currency.
Fortnite developers warned users not to fall victims to these scams and be careful with who they share their information and where they buy V-Bucks from. Users need to beware of fake claims that promise new skins and weapons, and all sorts of giveaways, along with free V-Bucks.
It doesn't require any prior knowledge or experience to be able to spot such scams.
However, there are a lot that look pretty decent, and not at all fake. These pages might look exactly like the official Fortnite or Epic games page and may even provide links to their official sites. However, as I mentioned in the beginning, if it's not the official Epic Games or Fortnite website then you shouldn't purchase anything from them, or give them any kind of information.
Scammers can often post links to their fake websites in a reply to official posts from Epic Games on all social media platforms, like Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.
What they usually ask from you is to click their link, give them your Fortnite username, and maybe answer a few questions, and they'll give you free V-Bucks in return. However, once you give them all that information you'll be left with no free V-Bucks, and in many cases scammed out of your account.
There are a few established websites such as PointsPrizes which do provide genuine opportunities to earn free V-Bucks. Usually these sites will ask you to save up points by completing surveys, offers and watching videos ads.
Eventually, once you've earned enough points, you can claim a prize such as a free PayPal payment or a PaySafeCard. You can then use those to buy V-Bucks from the Fortnite website.
The key thing to recognise here is that any genuine site won't make unrealistic claims. They will be clear that you'll have to earn your reward, instead of just generating instant free V-Bucks out of nothing.
Most importantly, genuine sites will never ask you for your account information, or send you suspicious looking emails.
Despite the overwhelming tsunami of scams, the creators of Fortnite aren't pulling any punches when it comes to trying to protect their players. They have issued repeated warnings on the official Fortnite Twitter account. This has drawn the attention of a large number of mainstream news outlets which have published stories, increasing awareness about the issue.
Unfortunately, the reality is that there is little chance that Epic Games will be able to shut down free V-Bucks scams completely. Most youngsters don't read online news websites and there is simply too much demand and too many scammers who stand to profit.
Say NO to scams!— Fortnite (@FortniteGame) May 25, 2018
Beware of scam sites offering free or discounted V-Bucks. The only official websites for Fortnite are https://t.co/8CxczhrZwk and https://t.co/zxorPaoiJb.
For more information of Account Security: https://t.co/oF57QdfDLH pic.twitter.com/5oTKougmuq
It appears that the Fortnite legal team are likely to have years of whack-a-mole ahead of them, as they take down one pop-up scam website after another. However, as soon as they take down one site there will most likely be many more to replace it.
We have seen the same issue affecting free PSN codes and other similar niches online. The only real hope is for large companies such as PointsPrizes to create legitimate alternatives in this niche and force out the scam artists.
Yes it is possible, but only if you've first purchased access to the Save The World game mode. After that you'll be able to earn a small amount of V-Bucks every day by completing daily quests and achievements.
However, a large part of Fortnite's fanbase are players who joined Fortnite's free-to-play Battle Royale game mode. In many cases they cannot afford to purchase V-Bucks, or simply don't have a credit card or PayPal account available. Unfortunately, many of these players are also young people, who are most likely to be tempted into free V-Bucks scams.
What scammers take advantage of the most is the increasing number of young players on Fortnite, counting on the fact that young gamers might be naive enough to get tricked.
You need to SAY NO to sites that promise free, instantaneous V-Bucks, no matter how tempted you might be by their offer.
The only way to get V-Bucks is to either buy them directly from Epic Games or earn them by completing surveys, watching ads, or doing similar activities that will earn you point which can later own be translated into V-Bucks.
Here are a few tips that will help you stay safe and away from scam sites: