Pokemon Go – Banning users

Pokémon Go creators, Niantic, have started to permanently ban users who breach the terms of use. Previously, they were using “soft-bans” that would warn users who hacked the game or used third party GPS-changing applications to cheat the game. More hackers and cheaters found ways to bend the rules and gain an unfair advantage over the hard-working die hard fans of the popular phone app game.

Niantic has updated their terms of use to include the following conditions that will result in a permanent ban, “Falsifying your location, using emulators, modified or unofficial software and/or accessing Pokémon GO clients or backends in an unauthorized manner including through the use of third party software.”

GPS changers – These apps change the GPS location of the user. This makes it possible for users to capture Pokémon that are region specific. For example, Taurus can only be found in the United States but with a GPS changer, someone from Australia could trick the game into thinking that they are downtown in New York City.

Some of the ways that cheaters have been breaking the updated terms of service include:

Bots – These bots work in the same was as the GPS trackers in that they trick Pokémon Go into thinking that the user is moving which would: hatch eggs faster, allow battling of far-away gyms, and increase Pokémon encounters.

Modified/Unofficial software – Some phone apps allow users to see the exact location of Pokémon around the world so they don’t have to search for rare or elusive Pokémon.

Back-ends – This gives users access to the game’s internal code, making it possible for them to change stats of their Pokémon, increase the number of items they own (like pokeballs, potions, lures, and other items that cost real money to purchase).

Niantic stated, “We will continue to work with all of you to improve the quality of the gameplay, including ongoing optimization and fine tuning of our anti-cheat system.”


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