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Mr. D

Fake GPS is still prohibited

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Hi all,

There's been an update that I haven't announced yet:
last month we released an addition to the anti-cheat, which is smarter and more reliable than ever.

It's not based on any formulas, speed calculations or guessing whether you've suffered from a bad signal or not.

The new anti-cheat layer can simply tell if your phone's operating system is running an app with a permission to modify GPS coordinates and will act appropriately if this app is active.

As you can imagine, players who've never installed a Fake GPS app on their phone have absolutely nothing to worry about (regardless of how fast their mode of transportation is :)), but everyone else will get caught.
There's no bypassing it and there are no grey areas: if you are flagged by this new system then you have most certainly attempted to cheat, I will not accept any excuses related to bad signal, phone being in the microwave or you playing while driving, because none of that matters (or is true).

Accordingly, I would like to remind everyone that falsifying your GPS coordinates is still considered illegal and as of the 16th of April 2020 there are automated punishment processes in place.

So if you get a Fake GPS warning do not try to push your luck further.
Any incidents are permanently logged in our database and the repeated attempts to cheat will automatically remove your account from all leaderboards, then apply a permanent ban.

Since the introduction of a new system the following players were caught cheating (or trying to cheat).

Display Name / Lands Title:
Jeita    Тёмная долина
TEOBERA    Terra di black angels
ian welle    Krizmac
Siouletta    Zena
FollowTheLeader    I N D I A
Vvg    Nvkz
Jubidub    Sozialistische Republik Hintertupfing
MrDeconstructive    Deconstructive
Draken1775    Draconian Federation
Ma    Catbounty
Zachary Earles    Bluntknight
Kalabulos    KOBRA FORCE
Дима Зайченко    ДимаCorporation
by alduin    Noruega
Big T    Hustalvenia
ლუკ'ა    Imereti
Stalker x    Despersia
乃のフの    Boraginaceae
Myosotis Boragina...    Nelfhiem
Nickol Parp    Тристрам
Dario Giaretta    el_giara
Артур Дроздовский    Pytpad
Marek Hryciuk    Ziemia dla ludzi
MagmortalZx    MagmortalZx
MagZx    Capital Das Notas
Lildevil    Weed Town 420
Saurabh Gola    The kingdom of SRB
Blac Squad    Waluto tribe
Predator98    Amphetamine
Mrkilleur 3000    pointe large
Evo    Land of Petoria
TLP lucky    TLP
Rainez FPV    Der einzig wahre
Jacob Melinsky    Umbra Starrua

Some of these players received a warning, but many have now been blacklisted and removed from the leaderboards.

Remember, all anti-cheat actions are automated and require no manual intervention from my end, so every cheater will get what they deserve, no exceptions. ;)

Please post if you have any questions!

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6 hours ago, Luna said:

Will using a VPN trigger the anti-cheat system?

Only if it becomes your new source of the GPS coordinates.

Simply using a proxy for network traffic or any security purpose that does not involve changing your GPS coordinates is fine.

When in doubt, simply check if your in-game blue dot matches your real-life position. If it isn't because of an app you've installed on purpose - that's what is against the rules and will get you in trouble.
If not, you have nothing to worry about. ;)

  • Thanks 1

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This is very disappointing and short-sighted.  There is a valid and common use of the external gps source dev option in Android - namely, using an external gps receiver.

In Uganda, as in Malawi before my new posting in Kampala, I use an external gps dongle that has better reception so that my position doesn't fluctuate by 100m+ constantly because gps was never designed for equatorial optimization, and unlike in most of the developed world there aren't 2 dozen routers nearby at any moment to boost Google location services.  It is a bluetooth device that is carried on me when I play.  It isn't spoofing my location, it's there to provide my phone, and the game, a MORE accurate location.

I'm 200% onboard with anti-spoofing efforts, as it's the bane of all gps-based gaming, which I love.  But there's a reason other games use FAR more sophisticated detection methods than simply looking at a single android flag.

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18 minutes ago, Max Siren said:

But there's a reason other games use FAR more sophisticated detection methods than simply looking at a single android flag.

Who said that it's one single flag that the anti-cheat is based on? ;)
Presence of the app in developer options or its ability to affect your location alone are not enough to trigger the anti-cheat.

To do so the app has to actively supply fake coordinates that mismatch reality.

Have you used this dongle this week or in May?
If yes, then it's not what has put your name in the list above.
Your account has been flagged due to a solo incident on April 24, 2020 (that we can discuss and review separately :)); nothing that happened after that is relevant.

However, I am curious as to what GPS-enhancing app exactly you are talking about; can you please provide a link to it on the Play Store so that I could review its capabilities?

Thanks,
Dan

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Maybe I jumped to conclusions.  Being listed above is rather upsetting, as you might imagine.

It's not a GPS-enhancing app, it's a physical device, the Garmin GLO 2 at the moment.  It connects to any bluetooth device (a phone or tablet, but I've used devices like it in various field vehicles for work) and interfaces with an app which Android uses as an alternative source of GPS info.  The app can control the sampling rate, etc.  Because it's a bluetooth connection, the device's location must be within meters of the phone... but really it's in my pocket.

The Garmin has it's own app in the Play Store but it's crap.  There are tons of 3rd party GPS input apps in the store that work much better, because they all do the same basic thing of taking the gps data from the device and pass it to Android as an alternative GPS source.  It's possible that it was around the end of April that I was trying apps to see which worked best with the old Nexus 6P I use for walking around (don't laugh... it's not safe to use a flashier new phone in Kampala, especially at night).

Could that have triggered your new detection logic?  Happy to help you test if need be.

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9 hours ago, Max Siren said:

Could that have triggered your new detection logic?  Happy to help you test if need be.

Quite possible; GPS input apps are very likely to have the potential to alter your coordinates without relying on any device and that is, essentially, what constitutes cheats in "Domination: Earth".
I cannot possibly filter the usage of these apps by "player intentions", so please steer clear of any 3rd party apps that do more than connect a bluetooth device to your phone. ;)

No need to test anything from your end (please don't; once again, the anti-cheat doesn't know if you're trying to help me or are genuinely trying to cheat :)), but if you can send me a link to the app you are using I will download it and review myself.

Thanks!

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