Valve conducted a weekend-long autumnal cleanout of their suspected Counter Strike: Global Offensive cheater lists. Some of the names that were handed Valve Anti-Cheat bans (VAC), included script kiddies and third accounts. Titan’s Hovik Tovmassian (KQLY) and Epsilon’s Gordon Giry (SF) were both banned just hours before they were due to fly out to DreamHack winter in Sweden. This forced both the tournament and the players to withdraw from the tournament.
It has been messy and, much like the Dota match fixing revelations last month, the consequences echo far beyond those directly involved. Although those caught face permanent “VACations” from ESports, the specter of hacking continues to haunt us all. It also casts doubt on some of the most important moments in Counter-Strike Global Offensive esports like the clutch jump shot USP kill by KQLY below. How can we prevent false accusations? Or even catching hackers with code in their hands. These are some tips to help you spot cheaters and what you should do when you do find one.
Hacking is simple… It is easy to hack. Hackers aren’t very good at hiding their activities, which is good for you as it makes them easier to find, but bad for anyone who can use them. There are three main types of hackers you might encounter:
Wallhacks: A common accusation against players when they don’t see their attacker is that they shot them through the wall. Hacks allow you to see the outline of players (such as in spectator mode or grenade paths). This is one of the most obvious cheats.
Triggerbots and aimbots: These hacks are similar to auto-assisted aim consoles. They can either snap to a target or improve accuracy. Triggerbots “improving” corner ambushes’ reaction times by firing as soon as the target crosses their crosshair, It can be very obvious or subtle.
Hack “ESP”: This hack gives you “extra-sensory abilities” to “telepathically” know your opponent’s health count, ammo, and whether they are walking or running. You can also increase the sound level of footsteps and distant gunfire.
Mobility hacks: These can be used to increase speed or teleport to any place on the map. These can include “ghosting” through solid objects or walls. However, these are rare and nearly completely removed from the game, unless cheat consoles allow them.
What are you looking for? What are you looking for? You can check replays of matches you played with hackers and look through their eyes. GOTV doesn’t always accurately track their movements so it is possible to miss subtle trigger adjustments or aim adjustments. However, wallhacking is easy to spot.
If the hacker can’t hide their knowledge, spectator mode will allow you to observe them react to player outlines. It’s a good indicator that a hacker is not careful about approaching corners or following a player along a wall to reach them. If they have gone all Matrix and begun shooting people across the map from several buildings, you can easily write a report.
Do some background research if you are unsure whether the crosshair was unnaturally smooth and went straight to your opponent’s head. You can click right on the name of the suspect to view their CSGO profile in the leaderboard (default key: “TAB”)
You should first Click here to check how many skill badges and ranks they have. While not many should be a concern, some players with high skill may only use a smurf account to practice or trolling. Check their Steam profile to see if that is the case. You should check their Steam profile to see how many hours they have played and if they are banned from VAC. They should have decent skills if it is over 300. If it is under 50, they are pushing their luck. It’s obvious that if they have been caught before, chances are much greater than they will try again. While it is not a significant indicator if their Steam profile has been made private, most hackers keep those low-hour profiles secret.
If you suspect that the player is being hacked, click on their name and report them. Overwatch, the team made up of experts who look at replays and demos reported, will be able to spot the signs of hacking much more quickly and will handle it from there. Notifying them is the first step, but doing your duty to your community will ensure that cheaters do not make it to the pro ranks.