PS5 vs Xbox vs Nintendo: Which Is Most Secure in 2024?

For better or for worse, some of us spend a lot of time in front of a TV or monitor, with a game console whirring away in the background. Consoles are a source of entertainment, the occasional bit of education, and even companionship.

In all that time, with all of those people, you deserve to be safe. You deserve to have your privacy respected, and your data kept away from people who’d use it in unkind ways. That’s right, you deserve good things.

To that end, I’ve been given the task of figuring out which console is the least likely to spill your secrets all over the internet. Which gaming console is the most secure – PS5, Xbox, or Nintendo Switch? Here’s what I’ve found.

Before you go on, keep in mind that there’s not a console on Earth with a perfect track record for security and privacy. However, you can give yourself an edge by playing your online games with CyberGhost VPN, just for that extra layer of security.

Why Should You Keep Your Game Console Secure?

Here’s the thing: you’ll need to use your real name and some valid payment information to buy games. The companies that make these consoles store that data pretty much forever, along with a whole lot of information on your behavior and spending habits.

Some of them record your voice conversations, and God only knows what people can do with your voice and a little AI these days. Never mind all the personal, private stuff you might have said to your new best friends in your new favorite game via both voice and text chat. Gaming is an intensely personal experience at times, meaning that your console has a wealth of information about you.

If that gets hacked, well, large swaths of your personal life may be up for sale. Heck, that information could end up freely downloadable in a torrent on some skeevy website. So yeah, you want to keep that secure as best you can.

Which Game Console Is Most Prone to Hacking?

Sony has had a number of high profile breaches, including at least two in 2023. That’s not to say they don’t give security due attention, but Sony in general is a pretty big target for hackers. Even the North Korean government hit it, once, and that affected the PlayStation Network in a big way.

Microsoft is likewise a common target for hackers, but Xbox itself hasn’t had any major security breaches since 2013. Being one of the largest companies in the world certainly has its perks.

The Nintendo Switch network hasn’t had too many breaches, just one in recent memory (2020). It’s also not great that, as of 2022, it has asked users to stop using its Wi-Fi USB connector due to a vulnerability. Still, its track record is fairly solid in the hacking department.

Which Game Console Is Best for Your Privacy?

This isn’t an easy thing to figure out the hard way, and so I find myself incredibly grateful for the efforts of The Mozilla Foundation. You’ve heard of companies having good or bad “track records”? TMF is the group that tracks the record, at least in terms of privacy.

Let’s be clear on one thing: none of the console companies are particularly good about privacy. Their whole business model is predicated on not just selling you games, but collecting data to sell you more games and services. That said, the most private console is (drum roll please) the Xbox Series X & Sbut not by much.

Microsoft does NOT sell your data, it’s generally been good about security, and it seems to collect less data overall. However, that doesn’t mean it’s always doing it right. In 2023, it was forced to settle with the FTC for collecting personal data about children, and not telling parents how much data. Also, Microsoft doesn’t collect voice data anymore, which is nice.

Nintendo also doesn’t have a policy of selling your data, but it does collect data on users from third party sources. It’s buying data on you, in other words, to try to understand you better than you understand yourself.

Sony also collects data on users from third parties, and records all conversations in voice chats. This is intended as an anti-verbal-abuse measure, but there’s no way to opt out of it. There is a way to opt out of having your voice data used for transcription purposes, but at this point, I wonder why.

More to the point, Sony will share your data with third parties, and other services in the Sony Group.

PS5 Security and Privacy Settings

The PS5 offers a fairly granular approach to privacy, with plenty of options to let you manage your online gaming experience. We don’t have the time or space in this article to go over every detail, but here’s what PlayStation’s privacy settings will let you do:

    • Define and manage your friends list
    • Decide who gets to see your friends list
    • Decide who gets to see your real name
    • Decide who gets to interact with you via chat or voice
    • Set Close Friends
    • Appear offline to non-friends, or everyone
    • Decide who can see what you’ve played and how long
    • Decide who can invite you to play online
    • Opt out of (some) analytics and data collection
    • Opt out of targeted ads
    • Two-factor authentication

Xbox Security and Privacy Settings

Xbox’s privacy settings have a lot in common with those of PlayStation, but with a few extra options, and perhaps a bit more control. In particular, Xbox offers more precise control over your relationships with other players. Here’s a general list of what your Xbox will let you do:

    • Define friends list
    • Decide who gets to see your friends list
    • Decide who gets to see your real name
    • Decide who gets to interact with you via chat or voice
    • Decide who gets to use video in calls with you
    • Set Close Friends and other, more complex relationships
    • Decide if others can share content that you create and share on the Xbox platform
    • Appear offline to non-friends, or everyone
    • Decide who can see what you’ve played and how long
    • Decide who can invite you to play online
    • Opt out of (some) analytics and data collection
    • Opt out of targeted ads
    • Two-factor authentication

Nintendo Switch Security and Privacy Settings

Nintendo Switch’s online network feels very locked down, almost claustrophobic in some ways. Unfortunately, their “we know best” approach means that they have a rather limited selection of privacy controls.

As with all the other consoles, you can also manage all of these settings on your children’s accounts.

    • Define friends list
    • Set Best Friends
    • Appear offline to non-friends, or everyone
    • Turn off voice chat
    • Decide who can see what you’ve played and how long
    • Decide who can invite you to play online
    • Opt out of (some) analytics and data collection
    • Opt out of targeted ads
    • Two-factor authentication

Additional fun fact: You can choose whether to see friend suggestions, but not whether you are shown to others as a suggested friend, which is odd to me.

Which Game Console Is the Most Secure?

As with privacy, the Xbox Series X and S consoles take the lead in terms of general security. The Xbox network currently has the best history of keeping your data away from hackers, imperfect as that record may be. It’s also worth noting that because of Xbox’s slightly better privacy features and policies, there’s a little bit less for attackers to steal.

That said, I want to give a special shout out to Nintendo. Their approach to security and privacy may offer less customization than Xbox or PlayStation, but no one can deny that they put a lot of effort into their security.

Why You Should Use a VPN While Gaming

Oh, there are so many reasons. A gaming VPN can help to protect you on your local network by encrypting all the traffic between your console and the VPN server of your choice. This means that your ISP can’t tell what you’re doing, and your local network admins can’t see you gaming either. That helps you bypass blocks and any attempt to selectively throttle your gaming traffic.

A VPN will also hide your IP address, preventing DDoS attacks from reaching your home network. You can also use this feature to change your country, allowing you to more easily play games from other countries.

Disclaimer: if the Xbox, Playstation, or Nintendo networks get hacked, a VPN won’t protect your data. It can only help to protect you on your end of things. I just want to be clear about that.

Why CyberGhost Is the Best VPN for Game Consoles

CyberGhost uses military-grade encryption to protect your data as it travels to and from our VPN servers. Those servers are located all over the world, so you’re almost guaranteed to get a fast, smooth connection to the game servers of your choice.

Combine that with a suite of enhanced security features, direct support for consoles, and a 24/7 customer support team, and you’ve got the best VPN to keep your gaming console secure.

Plus, you can try it all out risk-free with our 45-day money back guarantee.


Which game console has the best parental controls?

The Xbox series has the most comprehensive set of privacy options in general, and those are all available for child accounts as well. That being said, Nintendo’s library of games is far more kid-focused. You’ll have to decide which of those two things matters more.

Which console has the most privacy issues?

At present, that would be the PlayStation. It’s not so much the console itself, as the fact that Sony’s networks and services keep getting hacked and compromised in general, which means that plenty of personal player information has been leaked. However, PlayStation also has the least attractive privacy policies, and collects more personal info.

Can game consoles get malware?

Only under some very specific circumstances. By and large, consoles take the “walled garden” approach for a reason. While there’s no guarantee that any app or game you download from their stores will be good, you can be reasonably certain that they won’t be malware.

Can PS5 get viruses?

Generally no. Unless you’re hacking your own PlayStation for some reason, and that will void the warranty, the system has been designed to be very virus-resistant. Just stick to official software from the PlayStation store, and you probably won’t get infected.

Can Xbox get viruses?

Xbox is likewise designed to be virus-resistant. However, it should be noted that you can technically enable Developer Mode, which gives you the ability to “side load” apps that normally aren’t available on the Xbox store. Don’t do this unless you know exactly what you’re doing!

How do I stay safe on Xbox?

Just follow the usual advice: stick to official apps and games. Don’t give anyone your password, IP address, or real address, even if they ask nicely. If you want an extra layer of security, use CyberGhost VPN while you game online to hide your IP address and limit others’ ability to snoop on your activities.

How can I secure my connection while gaming?

Again, this is where a VPN comes into play. CyberGhost VPN encrypts the traffic between your home network and the VPN server, limiting the number of people who can spy on what you’re doing. It’ll also hide your IP address from would-be attackers and hackers. You might also consider changing your NAT type to Moderate NAT, if it doesn’t break any of your games.

What’s the best VPN for game consoles?

CyberGhost VPN reigns supreme, and for good reason. We use the industry-standard 256-bit AES encryption to protect your data from prying eyes, and since our network includes 10-Gbps servers in busy locations, you always get the fastest connections possible. With servers all over the globe, CyberGhost can actually lower your ping and reduce lag, when the conditions are right.

Leave a comment

Write a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*