Pokemon Go cheaters crackdown - Niantic abusing file system access permission

Vaibhav Chawla Vaibhav Chawla Feb 19, 2020 Gaming, News

When it comes to augmented reality mobile games, Pokemon Go is undoubtedly one of the best and its player base is in millions. The game was launched in 2016 and since then it has been running strong. Pokemon Go has been developed by Niantic.

The credit for the success of the game goes to Niantic. From time to time, they kept adding new features which kept players lured to the game. Last year, Niantic added Team Go Rocket to the game, which was well appreciated by the PoGo fans.

Pokemon Go Lunar Year Event 2020

Cut to now, a concerned Pokemon Go player, fw85, posted on Pokemongodev subreddit that, Niantic is abusing file system access permission to detect the presence of the TWRP folder and then locking out player. You can read his statement down below.Pokemon Go Lunar Year Event 2020

Some time ago, Niantic started abusing a hole in today’s mobile operating systems to dig through parts of your file system, where they should have no access at all. They’ve been doing that for quite a while now to try to determine, whether you have a ‘Magisk’ folder present on your internal storage, which would indicate something to do with root and they’d automatically consider you a cheater for that and locked you out. This was completely ridiculous back then, as rooting does not make one a cheater – that’s a massive stretch. Even the Magisk developer laughed it off and just stopped creating that folder on its users’ storage for this reason.

The post I’ve made about it can be found here if you’re interested. If you follow there, there should also be a link explaining how they exploit the access permissions.

Well now they’re at it again, digging through your files to look for a TWRP folder on your internal storage. Delusional as always, now they believe this makes you a cheater too and they’ll proceed to lock you out of the latest game version.
For those unfamiliar with TWRP (TeamWin Recovery Project), it’s a custom recovery environment for Android based systems, allowing for increased functionality over stock recovery, such as the ability to make backups of the whole system, or even installing a custom one – which is e.g. useful for older phone owners wanting a new system. There are tons of legitimate use cases for running TWRP and this is just another ridiculous conclusion that has been made.

Pokemon Go Buddy Adventure

Note : If you have a TWRP folder on your internal storage, the latest version of the game won’t let you play (from version 0.167.0 on)

Instances of Pokemon Go players indulging in spoofing are quite common. It seems like to curb down the act of spoofing & cheating, Niantic has taken a step further by cracking down on rooted devices. Well, but this move from Niantic does not seem upright, as a user or app developer who likes to install custom recovery or have developer end control on his device might not use cheating or spoofing apps.

Pokemon Go Buddy Adventure
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For your information, players with root access will get a device incompatibility” error randomly during gameplay, when the game performs the filesystem scan. However, some players might also get the error during the login. They will not get a red warning saying they have received a strike for cheating. Have a look at few complaints and views regarding this from various players.

Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go

Niantic is strict against cheating and many times, it has sent ban waves to curb down cheaters & spoofers. But abusing file system access is not a legit way to curb down cheaters from our perspective.

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Vaibhav Chawla

An avid follower of the latest technology & gaming trends. Looks for positivity & happiness around. Follows the mantra "Work Hard & Play Hard." A sports enthusiast, and Federer fan. I believe in myself & currently enjoying the journey of life.