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Kaspersky Lab Dismisses Claims Pokemon Go Poses Terrosist Threat

© AP Photo / Marcio Jose Sanchez"Pokemon Go" players begin a group walk along the Embarcadero Wednesday, July 20, 2016, in San Francisco
Pokemon Go players begin a group walk along the Embarcadero Wednesday, July 20, 2016, in San Francisco - Sputnik International
Sergey Lozhkin, Senior Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab, said that he does not think that Pokémon Go is a serious security threat.

A woman using a mobile phone walks past a shop selling Pokemon goods in Tokyo, Japan July 20, 2016. - Sputnik International
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MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Pokemon Go mobile game that has captured the minds of people across the world is unlikely to be used as a tool to conduct terrorist attacks, Sergey Lozhkin, Senior Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab, told Sputnik.

Pokemon Go is a free augmented reality mobile game where the picture displayed on the smartphone screen is projected onto real-world locations. The aim of the game is to catch Pokemon (pocket monsters). The game hype raised security concerns, as it potentially can make people gather in one place, which is what attackers usually look for.

"I do not think that Pokémon Go is a serious security threat. Assumptions on the possibility of the usage [of] this app as a tool to conduct terrorist attacks are overhyped too, in my opinion. Unfortunately, finding a crowd is not an issue for terrorists," Lozhkin said, adding there was no need to impose any special restrictions on the game.

He advised following general Internet safety measures and refrain from installing apps from unknown sources, jailbreaking devices and tapping spam links.

Gamers play with the Pokemon Go application on their mobile phone, at the Grote Markt in Haarlem, on July 13, 2016 - Sputnik International
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When it comes to the potential physical security risks, "it is all the matter of common sense," he added. "It is obviously dangerous to catch Pokémon’s while driving, or while crossing the road, etc."

Pokemon Go has become a worldwide hit since its launch two weeks ago and has already been blamed for a wave of crimes, traffic violations and complaints in cities around the globe. Several countries have issued warnings that the game poses a security threat when played by military and intelligence staff.

On Wednesday, Indonesia banned police and military personnel, as well as staff of the presidential palace from playing Pokemon Go while on duty.

Earlier this week, the US government issued a warning to military and intelligence personnel to play the mobile game carefully to avoid leaking sensitive geolocation data, while some Arab countries have warned residents that the app's geolocation features may be used by criminals, adding that players of the game are vulnerable to hacker attacks.

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