over the past few months, we’ve received a fair share of questions, reports, angry e-mails and screenshots from angry readers who got frustrated by the state of the game in their Area. These reports claimed GPS spoofers were dominating cities and gyms and honestly we gave little attention to these reports at the time – we were suspicious in their truthfulness.

However, after experiencing a number of similar incidents in our own region, we decided to take a look for ourselves and see how difficult is it to actually use GPS spoofing in Pokémon GO.

Spoofed in 90 seconds

When we first approached this idea, we expected that the entire process is going to be difficult, technically demanding and cumbersome. We expected the following to happen:

  • our Android phones should probably be rooted
  • there’s going to be problems with the apps spoofers use (we expected low production quality)
  • surely, we’ll get banned or soft-banned in a matter of hours

Shockingly, none of listed problems happened.

It took us around 90 second to setup and successfully start using GPS spoofing on Android:

  • The apps were publicly accessible, hosted on Google Play Store
  • we had almost zero issues with them
  • none of our Android (6) devices were rooted
  • two days after, no one in our test group is banned or was soft-banned at any moment

But it get’s even worse.

Couch Generals

In the first couple of hours of spoofing we had the first frightening realisation. It became apparent that GPS spoofing on Android is not only easy, it’s also the prefered way to play for the majority of high level players in our area.

To test this hypothesis, we decided to contest a Level 10 Mystic Gym that’s know to be controlled by spoofers. The gym is located by the beach, there’s no buildings or cars for at least 500 meters in every direction, so spotting Pokémon GO players or anyone for that matter, is very easy.

Our group spread across the area, making sure to stay in range of the Gym. It took us a while, but eventually we got it down and prestiged it to Level 5 (Valor).

45 minutes later, the Gym was back in control of Team Mystic and it was Level 8. No one came. No cars, no people, not even cats. No one was playing Pokémon GO on the beach but us.

And yet, the Gym was back in their hands.

It takes two to tango

GPS spoofing is everywhere, but it’s hard to blame the solely the players. The tools to spoof our out there, they are simple and easy. They are even hosted on your platform’s App Store.

Niantic MUST step up and introduce mechanisms for early detection and punishment of spoofers. Player reports and eventual bans are almost completely ineffective, as the spoofers can advance at a pace that is incredibly fast and impossible for others.

Prevention is the key here. If the damage is already done, regular paying customers will leave the game and they have every right to do so. Why would they invest their time and money in a game dominated by cheaters?

  • arik100

    I’m just trying to understand what took you so long to publish this article, declaring that cheating ruins this game and the fun in it.
    not only it gives superior advantages to player in catching pokemon everywhere, it also gives them the ability to dominate the gyms effortlessly.
    It’s just a joke that ninatic doesn’t decide to take the manner into their hands more seriously and ban-prevent this, because it’s basically so easy to do that.

    • disqus_TfNievNKqx

      Becausd spoofers took their gyms, so suddenly $hit got real

      • Danielle Alford


      • irvingt13


    • vision33r

      GPS spoofing doesn’t help no skill players that complain about losing in gym battles. Anyone can google and learn which Pokemons to use to win battles.

      • Burrito

        Explain to be the skill aspect of the game.

        The game is complete RNG and tapping a screen. The gyms are a joke of tapping the screen

        • vision33r

          There’s a lot of people that suck at tapping. That’s why they’re here whining.

          • scubear

            Screen tapping favours those with better masturbatability.

        • Neocoyo

          Skill? its a matter of if your 4G signal holds ive lost soo many battles due to laggy event markers or mons firing off specials with no warning or message popup, Skill has nothing to do with it or being halfway through a fight and “ERROR” and it locks you out till you restart your client….

    • Min Hinh

      I guess you don’t realize that some botters have 20,000 accounts running simultaneously right?

    • Thresh

      Honestly I didn’t start spoofing until last night. It sucks when there’s like 3k Tyranitars already. Pisses me off. So well, now I’m doing it. Niantic lost when they made it tough to catch pokemon, spawn rates into shit, and eggs might as well be rotten.

      • Nick Wilson

        I play legit. Every dang day and will do so cause it is still fun for me. I’m level 35 about to be 36 . Its so rewarding the fact that just today I hatched a lavitar. Bustin my butt till I can’t barely walk anymore. I started the game late. So I killed my self to catch up. And people stopped playing cause they got bored. So I pushed harder walking farther etc… Hunting harder. Legit. Now that gen 2 started I pushed even harder knowing people would start playing again. Saving candies. Star dust. Etc…. Catching everything that spawned. So I’m laying in bed now in pain from playing so hard. To do it again tomorrow….

        • Matthew Weiss

          I’m right there with ya. I’ve had days where I walked over 10 miles playing Pokemon Go, and have gotten blisters from it.

          Just last Fall, I had an overuse knee issue that cropped up that I attribute to doing too much walking!

          I’m only 31 though, and no larvitar. Three Mantines though ughh

        • johann augustine

          It’s okay, playing legit so it doesn’t get boring. If you cheat then the game loses all meaning and so boredom sets in. That’s the catch

      • Thomas Schulz

        I just started spoofing myself for the same reasons, I just removed the software though because I don’t wanna get banned. Have you been banned at all Thresh?

  • Heydavid17

    Just the way, how Niantic took down tracking apps, they should do this to spoofing apps as well.
    Just freaking disgusting to see Tyranitars in gyms everywhere, at least 1 day after Gen 2 was released.

    • Adam A.

      The apps used to spoof are not solely dedicated to spoofing. They’re utility apps designed to let developers test their own apps that depend on GPS data.

      Also, Niantic has done everything it can to detect spoofing. If Pokemon Go detects that “mock locations” developer settings are on it won’t log you in, for example, and if it detects that the player is teleporting around too much it will typically softban them. They even check to see if things like elevation are being updated, since most of the GPS spoofing apps don’t bother changing anything except for Latitude and Longitude. If spoofers set up correctly, and are using one of the better GPS spoofing apps, they’re virtually undetectable vs. a normal user.

      • MKimID

        Altitude is not in the parameter of it’s protocol, even Niantic add it, GPS Spoofing apps will use the reference altitude data from the map service (such as google) with some noise factor,

        I hope they do what they can do now, such as check the sniper using GPS apps,

        • vision33r

          If they do that it will break millions of legit gamers who have devices that can’t provide the proper GPS data. Niantic would rather allow the cheating than kill off millions of their gamers.

      • Daniel Gomes

        That’s not accurate about the mock locations btw. it still lets you log in.

        • vision33r

          They can’t stop mock locations, it’s built into Android to allow for navigation apps to provide detail routing info.

          • Daniel Gomes

            Exactly, in my opinion, there’s no way to attack GPS spoofers without affecting the legit players. Also this thread doesn’t talk about iOS, there’s a way to modify the IPA (apk equivalent) in order to not only spoof your location but to do other things like always hitting an excellent throw, moving the player directly to the nearest wild Pokemon selected on a list. EverythingApplePro has a video on it. It doesn’t even require Jailbreak, it does make it easier but it’s not required as it is possible to do it on XCode in MacOS.

          • Patrick Favret

            I used a hack to walk around and teleport cause I wanted to see how easy it was and you can literally just download the hack and get started. I continued to use it for another 2 and a half weeks since it was convenient I’m too lazy to go outside when there is snow everywhere (Canada). I recently deleted it cause its not fair and definitely not as fun. Seeing a dragonite on the map isn’t exciting when teleport to the exact location. But finding in the wild would be amazing for me. Also its pretty hard not to get banned if you don’t spin any poke stops and once u tap on the Pokemon you tap home and then ur safe to catch. Even if u get a soft ban you can spin a poke stop 40 times and your done. I think I got 5 softbans which is a little weird because they’re giving hackers a lot of chances.

          • johann augustine

            It gets less fun if you cheat, why what’s the point of playing if you already cheated and got max level?

            Legits on the other hand, just walk, and having the app is a bonus, an aid to their routine, so it’s not hard to keep playing..

      • RobertVS

        Your comments are not based on facts, much less experience.

        I became so frustrated with frequent and predictable spoofers (gym conquerors) in my area that I created a 2nd account which I ran on an unrooted Android using FlyGPS. I used it to take down spoof-frequented gyms until I gave up, because the sheer number of spoofers is too big for such robinhooding to counter. The spoof account is now thanks to lucky egg evolve runs and 100% GPS spoofing a level 35 trainer which has 17 dragonites all maxed up. I’ve shamelessly used it teleporting from one location to another, picking up snorlax dratini etc. on the way and I have not yet to this day witnessed any effect on my gameplay from Niantic. After 3 months of frustration (none of my spoof reports seem to ban spoofers in my area) I even reported my own spoof account using my original, honest playing account, with 6 individual reports. No effect whatsoever to this day, the spoof account is still doing live and well.

        I am confident that if not yet then within a very short period of time the majority of action within the Pokémon Go World will be either botted, or done by spoofers. Just check ebay and have a look, it costs 40 USD to get a level 36 trainer that has 25 Blisseys all of which have IV 100%

        • garyvancouver

          My friend did just that. Paid a very low 4.99 for several accounts on Ebay. The pokemons were nothing special, however you have enough candy to power up 8 or 10 of them, battle and take down gyms quickly. His accounts also have hundreds of revives and potions.

        • johann augustine

          Well niantic should exert some effort banning those accounts.

          For me I will keep using my own legit account, no sense paying for those bottled accounts that will get wiped out or deleted soon.

    • garyvancouver

      Same here in BC Canada. 5 Tyranitors in 4 gyms. All 3500+cp. All within days of gen2 release.

      One of those guys told me he bought the account on Ebay for 49USD. The account came with several Tyranitors, two dozen dragonites, etc etc. And all 100 IV.

      Not to mention thousands of candies for each species and several million stardust.

      Cost was far less than what honest players spend. No wonder so many have given up.

      • henrymart81

        I had no idea things were this bad. I just saw the ebay listings. This makes me want to stop playing.

        • johann augustine

          Once banned, and niantic can do that, Those accounts will have no value or takers, or users.

      • Jim B.

        You do know even with Max trainer level at 40, the Pokemon are max level 40, and max in any of the “hidden” stats is 15 which math done, 15+15+15= 45 right?
        There is no 100lv.

    • Nick Wilson

      I know I worked hard to hatch my lavitar…… I don’t remember how many ten eggs it took me.

    • Craig

      The tracking apps were cool. It made you get out and play the game. When I saw Snorlax was 4 blocks away and it had 7 min left, I ran out the door and when I got to the park, there were about 20 people there for the same reason. “Where’s the Snorlax?” “Right over there” “How many CP was yours?” It was fun.

      The spoofing crap does just the opposite. The parks are dead. Nobody talks anymore.

      • Zxeris

        we still have a tracking apps but only for the region of quebec in canada!!! the apps display real time pokemon, how many time left until dispawn and also the IV %. locate all poke stop and shows if there’s a lure on it or not. And for each scanned region (montreal, laval, etc.) it’s display also stats for all pokemon, heat map, %spawn rate per day calculated by how many pokemon spawn etc. Really good to find nest. That’s how I found a magikarp, chikorita, charmander and lavitar nest.

        • OutOfTheNorth

          Which app do you use, Zxeris?

    • Kenshin Himura

      Why don’t you wake up and get your own fake gps joystick app instead of crying about it.

      • johann augustine

        No, you’re the one to cry once your cheats/ bots/ spoofing accounts get banned. Don’t force other people to cheat

    • johann augustine

      Same here. Just managing with some hard earned gyarados n dragons, no tyranitar. But things seem to be looking up.. will definitely be more fun once all those fake accounts are gone, or even reduced…

  • Tomasz Bukowczyk

    This article is like 5 months late XD

  • BlackHawk Mercenaries

    Understand that the real frustration is in Niantics actions overall, not just spoofing in general. When this subject is discussed most people will say its technically impossible to stop, even though reports, screen shots, video evidence, etc should have some consideration, most believe its not enough. However, Niantic has gone above and beyond to prevent people playing while driving (Speed Caps), stop third party trackers (Legally pursuing them in court), and even preventing particular phones from using their app (unrooted Android devices) yet they seem unmotivated to stop spoofing?

    This is the real frustration, this is the anger behind the subject, it is not just that someone is cheating, its that so many other smaller, less meaningful applications have been so diligently pursued while this issue seems to be less than a priority. I personally help disabled children play the game and the speed cap has made it very difficult for them to enjoy the game. Perhaps the better alternative is to teach them to cheat and let them spoof from home? #WellDoneNiantic

    • Charles Osterkorn

      Lawsuits? Pretty damn clear to me. 😉

      • Kenshin Himura

        Not gonna happen buddy. Nice try though. I’m gonna keep cheating every day until Niantic wakes up and allows us to play how we want by adding a joystick to the game so you can play from home.

        • johann augustine

          Niantic isn’t gonna do that.. Pokémon company won’t allow that. Go means going, walking.. couch potatoes can just play other Pokémon offerings or games … why insist on violating rules and cheating when you’ve so many other options?

          • warren ingram

            I sat at a park bench for 2 hours in my local park and got 5k walking on my eggs while i caught pokemon due to signal bouncing that i was finally able to nail down to google maps throwing to the closest roads. So the reason i used my joystick was to use my REAL location to control my bouncing around. Didnt need to go using gps locations and teleport anywhere, just wanted to be able to walk to where i REALLY was and catch them but cant due to signal bouncing. Heck google maps wont even allow me to enter the GIANT park near my house that has multiple stops. This is my frustration.

    • RobertVS

      Niantic is clearly not the least interested in taking down spoofers. If you’d remove the bots and “sofa-players” ie spoofers from the game, the vast majority of game events would be gone, thus decreasing general interest in the Pokémon Go game world because gameplay for the honest trainers would become more boring. Removing all the bots and spoows would de facto decrease spawns, because the game algoritm feeds more pokémon spawns when more players are around and active. Just compare spawns on a Sunday with spawns on a Wednesday in any area of the game world.

      Niantic could easily block all spoofing, all it would take is them compare input from the phone’s motion sensor with how the player is moving around in the game. Trainers who play from their sofa or laptop/desktop computer don’t trigger phone motion sensors. Just think of all the jogging software available on the market…

  • Z K

    What apps did you use during the testing?

  • Monninen77

    Haters gonna hate.

    • Zeke

      No, haters gonna quit playing and wasting their money on this game.

    • joshlsmith

      Fatasses gonna spoof

  • FireWulf

    Only reason i see to GPS spoof in this game is to catch the regional pokemon. Since those pokemon are only found in certain countries.

    • Oscar Lopez

      You know… that’s kinda the point of region EXCLUSIVES buddy

      • joshlsmith

        It gets a little lame/unfair when they release a regional with a lot more power than every other regional (looking at you, Heracross).

        • Hans Nielsen

          It’s powerful, but not a game changer. I can do without.

      • James Broad

        Not everybody has the privilege to travel to get them. Buddy.

        • Burrito

          You don’t need them and the reality is having all the regional exclusive s and not traveling invalidates your entire Pokédex.

  • vision33r

    I disagree, I blame bad game design period. All Niantic needs to do is create the RNG possible for a variety of Pokemons to be caught anywhere. If you’re gonna fight against GPS spoofers it will be a neverending and technically impossible fight. There are too many ways to control my device what I want to do with it.

    Cheating can ruin any game but using controls to change poor game mechanics will never work and make the game less fun and more buggy.

  • BeekerC

    the game app reports GPS location to the Niantic Game Servers.
    the phone reports the GPS location to the game app.
    how is the game server supposed to verify that the GPS location reported is in fact the same GPS location as the phone, when the phone is the only source of reported GPS information?
    unless and until there is a way for the game server to ascertain the physical GPS location of the phone and compare it against the GPS location reported by the phone, it’s essentially an impossible problem. it’s like verifying the identity of someone on the other side of an instant message conversation when all you have is the name that the said they are.

    • Timing.

      How can said device possibly travel 3miles in under a minute?

      • Xifi1923

        well, there are people who spoof “smart” they dont spoof such distances in such low time gaps. lots of information can be found on reddit

        • BeekerC

          build a better mouse trap. the mice get smarter – well the surviving mice at least.

      • Adam A.

        They already do that. Spoofers limit their simulated movement speeds to be realistic. If they move too fast, they get softbanned (and probably flagged so that multiple softbans from it turn into permabans).

      • MKimID

        Yes, it should be detectable if user doing something after moved. and, Softban will be activated. that is what Niantic is doing now.
        Maybe it is repeated and then, Niantic will permban BUTthey are doing nothing now.

      • Zenamez

        Car? Train? Tram?

        I remember launching Go on a train journey to see what happens and I ended up teleporting down the track because I was going so quick (there were gyms at the stations, hence why I had the app open. When the train stopped at the station, I could either Prestige it or put one of my mons in quickly while it was there).

        Surprisingly, wasn’t softbanned as you’d expect from going so fast.

        • BeekerC

          >I remember launching Go on a train journey to see what happens and I ended up teleporting down the track because I was going so quick

          you were probably not soft banned because the game servers took into account your speed and known issue GPS drift.

      • BeekerC

        this is already accounted for. if the time between two logout/login locations is not sufficient to humanly move the phone that distance, you will get softbanned. they already do this. but usually only a softban, because most of the time it’s a first time offender wanting to catch something or enter a gym for a friend/sibling/spouse/SO teammate when they’re somewhere else. someone call’s home (Atlanta) from the San Francisco airport, tells them to log out so they can log in and catch a Dragonite. player’s GPS location shifts 2500 miles in 4 minutes. boom softban – no catches, no spins, no gym entry for at least 45 minutes. if they ever figure out that’s what happened, they’ll probably never do it again.

        as this is a well known reason for soft bans, spoofers will just take this into account.

    • MKimID

      Logically, Phone reports GPS location to the game app,
      But, GPS Spoofer Apps are intercept and modifying this data
      and then, provide to the game app.

      • SomeRandom

        What about comparing your connection point. You can spoof your GPS but what about the cell tower or wireless access point your connecting through?

        Spoofing both at once would increase the difficulty and maybe cause some to stop or be caught.

        • Zenamez

          Cell towers are pretty inaccurate (incredibly inaccurate compared to GPS coords).

          In order to get the location using cell towers or access points, they’d use the IP of the access point and with IP location comes the ability to use a VPN to route your traffic through it and make it look like you’re in another country.

          So if you spoofed to Japan, fire up your VPN and choose Japan and your double barrelled location detection system is being told (from both sources) you’re in Japan.

          If anything, it’s an extra app to run at the same time. Not hard at all.

          • Hans Nielsen

            Doesn’t need to be hard, just to catch a bunch o’ cheaters unawares 😉

        • BeekerC

          i’m no lawyer, and i’m don’t work for a cell provider, but i’m pretty sure getting cell tower data to correlate and locate phones is only available with a court order and that’s just for the US. even if it’s not, i doubt Niantic can get real-time cell tower data for every tower all over the world to do this comparison

          I’m just taking a SWAG here, i could be wrong.

      • BeekerC

        regardless of how the actual GPS location gets changed. the presumption of the game app is that the GPS location it gets is genuine, and has no way of disproving it.

    • Calmarius

      Simple: cross validate the GPS location with: IP address, Cell ID and wifi maps used by Google location services.

      Another countermeasure is that sponsored locations should show a pin code on a screen or a regularly replaced sticker you must enter to access the stop or gyms. You can only answer correctly if you are on the spot.

      • BeekerC

        >sponsored locations should show a pin code on a screen or a regularly replaced sticker you must enter to access the stop or gyms.

        as a rule, i never connect to public wifi unless i have no other choice. in the course of my playing i’d never pick up that pin or sticker.

        >Also Niantic can list apps on the phone and check whether they are active, and flag the accounts for a banwave.

        possible, but like viruses, said apps will just change whatever they need to to avoid detection. not saying it won’t work, just not sure how effective. when you build a better mouse trap, the surviving mice get smarter.

  • Gary Sereno

    Ingres was rife with it as well, then suddenly after 5-6 months suddenly there were a whole load of bans. Not sure how they were able to tell people were spoofing as Ingres had far superior reporting facilities and they seemed to ignore reports, but some how they managed it. It did become bad again though, so even if they do some thing for Pokemon Go I’m not sure how effective it would be from a long term perspective.

    • Joe Az

      Way i see it, nuantic should regularly ban monthly botters n spoofers. They can recreate but then get banned again etc.

      Will suck tho if my 1 and only legit account gets banned- thatll be the day i quit.

  • vision33r

    Nothing stopping people from paying someone to run their accts overseas to catch rare ones. The whole mechanics should be changed. How about improve the hatching system. Make eggs worth it. I’ve hatched over 100 eggs and they are all worthless.

    • Zenamez

      Just to back up the first point here – that does actually exist.

      If you go on eBay and search for “pokemon go”, you’ll get the usual recovered accounts of different levels and contents and you’ll also find ‘services’ like candy services, stardust services AND people from different continents offering to catch you their regional legitimately for ~£3-£5 (~$8). It’s insane.

      • garyvancouver

        Yep. Guy playing near to us paid 49USD for 100 perfect IV pokemon, thousands of candies and millions of stardust. I’d love to have one of his 3500cp Tyranitors.

        The gym near me has been yellow for several months now.

  • Aron Sunrain

    I’m honest, I played Pokémon Go most of the time with GPS Spoofing. Why? Because there are spoofers in my town with – and I’m not joking here – 3! different accounts, taking all your precious gyms down in a few minutes. I don’t know how they manage to keep 3 accounts active above lvl 30, but I also know that some players here really don’t have a live.
    But it’s not the only problem. Almost every rural gym in my area is controlled by spoofers and leveled up to 10. It’s simply not rewarding enough to take those gyms down over long time just to see them being taken away again after a few minutes.

    Another issue was the missing trading function, so I simply decided to catch all those region exclusives on my own. Also there are bigger towns e.g. Seoul in South Korea where almost every Poke Stop has lure modules active 24/7 – that’s some nice spot to farm your high IV Pokémon. Here in my town the game is dead. Nobody sets lure modules and you catch mostly shitty and common Pokémon.

    If Niantic would seriously ban all that spoofing stuff, I’d rejoice. In my opinion it’s one of the main reasons Pokémon Go is dying. I quit the game a few days ago, because I couldn’t stand it anymore. I’m sure to resume my lvl 31 account if spoofing get’s banned and they at least introduce trading.

    • Burrito

      So you justify it by everyone else is doing it.

      Make a stand

      • Aron Sunrain

        I don’t justify it. It’s just a game and when it’s no fun anymore, I’ll do whatever it takes to make it fun again. If that doesn’t work anymore, the game has to leave. I threw 50$ down the throat of Niantic and the least what I expect is that they work on a game, where cheating people aren’t the majority.

    • johann augustine

      I feel you. Still soldiering on cause hey, I just need to walk anyway for health reasons, just the way it should be. So no reason to quit for me.

      I’ll just be more glad if botters/spoofers are gone, will make taking gyms easier for legit players, or fairer trading once it commences.

      That being said, niantic should NOT allow trading until all bots/spoofed accounts are banned or deleted. Criminals shouldn’t benefit from fruits of the crime after all.

  • Connie Stephens

    What about people who like to play, but are physically limited from actually being able to get out and play?

    • Imseos1

      ok for this 1% i make some rules ^^

      If you spoofing arround in our hometown and catch some …everting is fine …

      if you sppofing to central park or a good spot in tokio /nwe york etc… and take down every gym you know …then you are a cheating asshole

      • Muhammad Rio

        Yeah, you’re right. If you spoofing, don’t enter into the gym. That’s very disgusting and disturbing to see spoofing Pokemon in gym

      • Connie Stephens

        Agreed on that point. I don’t think people should be taking over gyms enmass. That just takes the fun out of it. What, if anything, do they gain from this other than being bullish. Is there some secret underground that pays them money or something?

      • johann augustine

        Spoofing is still unfair to people who actually get out to catch.. the mons you get are definitely better than that playing legitimately. In which case, what’s to prevent you from trading these later on or using them in gyms, or the buyers using em as they are not caught fairly… no violating terms is always wrong

    • joshlsmith

      Tough argument there. You’d be allowing those people to spoof because of their disadvantage while handing them a huge advantage over every other player not spoofing.

      • johann augustine

        My point exactly..

    • Burrito

      Life ain’t fair,. Every knows by now that you can get to 75% of stops from a car. Thusly removing your arguemwnt

      • Connie Stephens

        There are people who can’t get in cars. Say that a kid has been playing for awhile, he gets sick or hurt and is recovering in the hospital or home in bed. They can’t get in a car and go aroundand hit pokestops. Besides, I believe the main complaint is people jumping around and taking over gyms with huge pokemon in several accounts. Not some disabled person just trying to play.

      • Nick Wilson


      • johann augustine

        That’s why there are speed limits. If they cheat n burn gas driving slowly, well that’s their loss too..

    • johann augustine

      Why not like some other game and not cheating in the process? Why insist on not walking in a walking app and cheating.. makes absolutely no sense unless you are so used to cheating in life n violating the rules, in which case you get what you deserve if you’re caught, just like doing something criminal…

  • ziilverr

    I get why it’s frustrating, but for some players, pokemon go really isn’t any fun without travelling far away. I’m not saying it shouldn’t be looked at in some capacity, but Niantic needs to make the game more accessible for everyone if they want to prevent this. More pokestops/gyms, more spawns and more frequent rare spawns would actually give alot of players the incentive to actually go out. As it is now in my area, all I get are pidgey, rattata, couple of bugs, hoothoot, sentret and occasionally a Schyther. The spawns are crap

  • Forest G Nome.

    This is why I cheat, because Niantic forces you to in order to even play.

    • dolkensp

      I had wonders of almost every pokemon, except Taurus and Farfetch’d before the gen2 update.

      I didn’t need to cheat to get there.

      You cheat, because you’re lazy, and lack willpower. Don’t try and blame Niantic for that.

      • Forest G Nome.

        Why, I can use the absolute force of WILLPOWER to clear 10 +3200cp off a gym that is fully controlled by bots and spoofers.

        Also, you haven’t heard of this thing called “rural america” you ignorant fuck. There’s nothing there, all thanks to *niantic* being lazy and lacking the willpower to make the game playable for people who’s nearest pokestop is 10 miles away.

        I mean my god I didn’t know people could be so stupid, but here you are. It’s hilarious lol

        • Burrito

          You are an entitled one aren’t you.

          Play something else. You are just like the kid who buys a play station game with out owning a play station and then complaining he needs a PlayStation to enjoy it.

          You understand how gyms and pokestops are based by now. With out park signs or churches no landmarks to hold the gyms or stops.

          • Forest G Nome.

            And you’re like the fat kid that says everyone else is cheating because they can run faster than you.

            Hate the game not the player.

          • Burrito

            Naw just playing the game as designed and intended and not making up BS story’s

        • Burrito

          So is it your rural, in a wheel chair or just a lazy player? I am confused

        • dolkensp

          > Why, I can use the absolute force of WILLPOWER to clear 10 +3200cp off a gym that is fully controlled by bots and spoofers.

          I stopped bothering with Gyms long ago – they’re not a big enough perk to justify the effort IMHO.

          > Also, you haven’t heard of this thing called “rural america” you ignorant fuck. There’s nothing there, all thanks to *niantic* being lazy and lacking the willpower to make the game playable for people who’s nearest pokestop is 10 miles away.

          Ever heard of “rural Australia”? There’s nothing there, sure, but not because *Niantic* is lazy, but because YOU’RE lazy. Go find a point of interest, and submit it.

          > I mean my god I didn’t know people could be so stupid, but here you are. It’s hilarious lol

          You need to work on your anger issues bud. Once you’ve worked on that, you can start working on logical progression, because you lack it.

          • Forest G Nome.

            Holy shit, it took you two weeks to go full retard? You had all that time to come up with literally anything that makes sense, and all you’ve got is “submit interesting locations” which is something you can’t even do?

            Bravo dude, you just played yourself.. Get a fucking lifeyou moron.

        • johann augustine

          3200 cp only? That’s a joke.. my 2800 vaps can clear em out in no time, all legitimately done. Botters that auto defend though are another matter, so are spoofers that claim/ defend gyms all over the place without even walking like I do. For them, I am waiting on niantic to just whittle their numbers down a bit more, regularly, or make their activities much less profitable…

      • vision33r

        Because you got a lot of free time, we get it.

        • dolkensp

          Actually, I have very little free time, and only play on the bus to work, and the bus from work (speed limit is a real pain!), and on the 3-day long-weekend/holiday my partner and I take once a month.

          An average work week for me is easily up around 60-80 hours, not including travel time. That’s BEFORE chores like cooking, cleaning, spending time with my partner, etc.

          Next excuse?

        • johann augustine

          Go is not something for people who have no time to walk. Go figure….

    • Josh Elliott

      …. You could try walking… that did it for me.

      • Forest G Nome.

        Cool, I’ll get in my wheelchair and you can come push me.

        • Josh Elliott

          You can move yourself around in your wheelchair, and if not, maybe games that their purpose is walking aren’t made for you, anymore than snowshoes, skiis, or bounce houses.

        • Burrito

          I call BS forest your point is irrelevant because you can get to most of the stops and gyms from a car

  • Dr_Vulpine

    If you’re barely complaining about the GPS spoofing, be glad you don’t play Ingress. (That’s Niantic’s original baby for those that don’t know)
    Ingress has public & faction Comms, and all it is these days is spambots advertising resale of in-game items.

    Oh, and it plays almost identically to GO. Using the same map overlay, 60% of the Portal/Stop ratio. Minus the capture, training and overall Pokemon aspect.

    Everyone in Vegas uses Hangouts because Niantic refuses to get off their lazy asses and DO something about it.
    We have cheaters there, yes, but the spamming is keeping people off Comms because we just get spammed out of the feed.

    If Pokemon GO picks up Comms, it’ll die off 100% in a week because spambots and their 200+ alt accounts on virtualized devices.

    • Burrito

      The ingress community self polices. Our local community reports suspected spoofers and multiaccounting I’m both factions

  • Lane Allen

    I don’t think spoofing is an issue unless you’re using it to control gyms. You earn real currency from maintain gyms. If you’re using it to go to places that are not easy to get to, if you have disabilities, are too young, live in a hostile area. That’s okay in my book. Just don’t interact with gyms whatsoever. But I feel that using it to catch Pokemon is perfectly acceptable.

    • Bryan Batcher

      You don’t think battling gyms withing your parameters is acceptable? You said it yourself, it’s in game currency at stake.

      • dolkensp

        > Just don’t interact with gyms whatsoever

        Uhhh… What did you miss…

        • Bryan Batcher

          I didn’t miss anything. I should’ve said “why do you think…”

    • Burrito

      Spoofing is a problem in all future aspects of the game.

      How do you think spoofing will impact trading? I play local have the typical local stuff. Local rival spoofed and has a huge collection max dragonites,15, from spoofing.
      Who is going to have more success trading.

      How about local gyms? For sake of discussion the trainer isn’t spoofing to take the gyms. Me with one max dragonites vs competitor who spoofed with 22 mons over 30k.

      On and on spoofing. Hurts all aspects of the game

  • Lane Allen

    Also you should never be using it outside of your general area. Nothing over 30mins away from you.

  • Vanesa Wolffe

    I had no idea this was possible. Makes sense though. There are just one too many Kangaskhan around here despite living on the east coast of the US. This sucks. I thought it was weird that so many people lording the gyms were level 35+ with all these high CP Pokémon that just aren’t common in the area & they have multiples. Ugh…I don’t know if I should play anymore. It’s already hard enough without spending money & now this.

  • Bryan Batcher

    It’s simple.

    Joe is paralyzed, cannot drive, and has very little money. Joe uses the SafeLink smartphone he got from a government program to play Pokemon Go. With the exception of the rare trip to the local park (driven by his mother), Joe can only catch the few common pokemon that pop up near his rural home and has no pokestops nearby.

    John lives in New York City with his rich parents. He’s healthy, has a car, and limitless access to his parents’ money.

    Would you tell Joe “tough luck, kid”?

    Spoofing makes the game more fair than it is inherently.

    • Charles Osterkorn


    • Handle: V1R4G3

      Yes, I would. God clearly hates Joe, and who am I to argue with God?

    • Burrito

      Life ain’t far kid. Don’t use a sob story to try an justify unfair play.

      Your argument is moot because there are many agency’s and charitable groups will take your disabled lad out to play.

      FYI the city bus or park on a bike is the best way to play pogo

      • PoroChief

        Reverse your argument and apply it to yourself and your stance. Get over it in life people cheat and take shortcuts. Honesty is trivial and only matters to the individual. If playing fair is your niche fine but take pride in that on your own and with your group. Just know life isn’t fair and your efforts to stay honest only matter to you and those who care. Cheating will never leave either accept that life isn’t fair or forever be burdened by it.

        • Burrito

          How shallow, cheating is a fact of life so accept it.

          Honesty as a burden?

          So cheif, do you look for honesty in your employer, friends, bank or significant other?

          I find it interesting you so easily embrace cheating and cast honesty a side

          • PoroChief

            No less shallow then your lack of remorse for the less fortunate. Life isn’t fair and your arguing a standard of honesty on a virtual platform is not equivalent to a bank nor will it ever be.

          • Burrito

            Remorse? Entertained

            Less fortunate? Really? You have no idea what your talking about. You are going to need to explain to me less fortunate.

            Let me see, you need a smart phone capable of running the game with a reasonable data plan. Your free Obama phone isn’t gonna cut it. There is no less fortunate in this game

          • PoroChief

            Your clearly very narrow minded there is many disabled people that have money. Regardless my point stands life isn’t fair and your little virtual world isn’t safe from that.

          • Burrito

            You are a simpleton aren’t you. Trust and honesty violations know no boundary’s,. The same guy who will cheat you at cards, pool darts or Pokemon go……..Is the same guy who will cheat you on your car, plumbing, home repair or finances

            And if you know a fellow who cheats in any aspect of his life and you trust him in real life. Your a fool

          • PoroChief

            That’s laughable. Im called a simpleton when you put out such a simplistic viewpoint like that. No the guy trying to have more fun on a game is not the same guy who will cheat you over in real life. Again no one cares about your virtual safe space.

    • Hans Nielsen

      There are other games out there, you know, better suited for people unable to walk. Try, like, anything without “Go” in its title….

      • johann augustine

        True true. Why not Starcraft wow coc or civ or bazillions others not requiring walking n violating the terms of the game..

  • I can’t say I blame them either. The game is terrible for anyone that doesn’t have a decent area with stops and gyms. Even for those that do, it doesn’t compare to a city with 50+ stops and gyms in a 5 mile radius.

    It’s an internationally known game only meant to be played by a certain sub set of players. Unless you are willing to spend a ton on gas. It’s no wonder people prefer to spoof.

    • Charles Osterkorn

      I rationalize a lot of stuff too. Good point.

    • Hans Nielsen

      Spoofing actually makes the game incredibly dull. No effort nor consideration nor sacrifice to make the game worthwhile. I can’t begin to understand the mindset of these people. You might as well take a taxi at a marathon…

      • I’ll share this, since I was once a spoofer.

        I spoofed because at one point I experienced spoofers in my area. This was alright at first because I took it as a challenged, no biggie. I also reported it to Niantic with photo & video proof. Days became weeks, I was frustrated having to drive between three of my closest gyms to defend. Now don’t get me wrong, if it was legit players I wouldn’t have an issue with it. But it’s soul crushing when you make the effort to play the game properly and some asshole can take it from the comfort of their home. So I looked into a way to spoof ( w/ my iPhone)to get back at this person. And it wasn’t difficult to do so. And it was pretty satisfying to to actually make a dent in this players mind. That’s why I did it because it felt great to get back at this person.

        Other people spoof because their area is terrible with pokestops or pokemon themselves. So they spoof to get some enjoyment out of game in which they wouldn’t be getting at all.

        Really, like I said this game is basically for city players or players that have a park nearby with multitudes of stops and gyms. This game is wildly unfair for the majority. I stopped playing ages ago since I had to drive everywhere and it wasnt fun anymore.

        At this point, spoofers are the hardcore players themselves. Because I stopped making reports at one point because I’ve noticed so many players spoofed as well. Yeah some are legit, but if you have an area like mine where it doesn’t have many stops, then there is no way your local players should be level 34 lol. Unless they make daily trips to downtown.

        • johann augustine

          You can’t fight fire with fire.. cheaters like that since they already cheat anyway. Best way is to ignore them and let niantic enforce its rules on fair play.. then it’s the game cheaters play with niantic while we watch n get entertained..

      • johann augustine

        Couldn’t agree more. Cheat, game loses any meaning or challenge. Might as well play your gb or arm chair general games.

        If they pay, niantic laughs all the way to the bank…

    • neemer5

      50 within a 5 mile radius? Pfft. This is downtown Chicago. 52 Pokestops. 3 block radius. That’s the equivalent of 5,000 within a 5 mile radius. If you’re living in Bufu, USA, you can’t compete with that.

  • Mike Micallef


  • Kris Kelley

    While I don’t advocate cheating, I fail to see how spoofers take the fun out of it for anyone. For most players, the fun is in the hunt to catch em all. The gym function is so boring and lame, why even bother fighting? I can take down most gyms in NYC by myself but my fight count is around 100. I just don’t get how anyone else’s actions in this game affect my enjoyment.

    • Hans Nielsen

      Try to realize that other people find other aspects of the game enjoyable. Fighting for your ‘hood is just as rewarding in PoGo as in football. Don’t be narrow minded.

      • Nick Wilson

        Kris is right and you are right. But some of us like the hunt. How is any of this narrow minded its just a game. People who argue over stupid things are stupid. So just saying…

    • Nick Wilson

      AMEN .

      • Nick Wilson

        I just like the hunt as well. And the occasional battle.

    • johann augustine

      Legit players like to take gyms too. It’s just annoying that the spoofers can crowd out legits out of gyms, but then they should not benefit from all that cheating. Definitely better for legits if they are banned

  • Wetzel402

    The kicker is how easily it is done without root on Android or on a PC for that matter. Yet Niantic uses Safety Net to block root users so I can’t play on one of my two phones just because I value customization over the game.

  • Monica Matos

    I knew this was going on. I took down a gym once that in a park on a hill. No one around for over a 1000 feet. A few minutes after I took it over I was knocked out and gym was changed to a different color. I ended up killing the Snorlax and before I got home I was out kicked out of the gym by fellow team players.

  • Cody Trotter

    who. fucking. cares. this isnt a real multiplayer game, since there is no substantive interaction between players or incentive to be better than others. so either niantic can put more stops in rural areas where theres 3 stops for a town, or get over themselves and their shitty product.

    • johann augustine

      If it’s a shitty product then don’t play it, much less cheat. Simple as that, there are so many options out there, but ruining it for those that find it ok is just being an arse.

  • He Ro

    Some peole spoof because they does not have any GYM or POKESTOP in their area.
    NIANTIC should fix this

    • Nick Wilson

      And people spoof cause there asshats

  • jon smith

    i think gps spoofing should be aloud, it gives the world as the playground for all players and here are the reasons why:

    -rural or city, same opportunity
    -cold or hot weather, dont matter
    -safety of your home
    -play alone, no real co-op mode
    -play anywhere, yes, even your bathroom, 🙂
    -play day or night
    -hold special events and everyone can go, no congestion problem, no cell saturation, no vandalism, no mess to clean up (lots of people are pigs and leave trash everywhere)
    -you can play another type of game inside pokemon go, maybe catch all 100iv pokemons (rare) and/or catch all 0iv pokemons (very rare)
    -niantic can spend money and resources somewhere else
    -dont saturate the cell towers, hate no internet connection when i am at a place
    -if they let gps spoofing, niantic could let people play from a computer, get more players, love the bigger screens

    what niantic should do is apply the rarity % to the world, that way very rare and epic will be harder to find and catch and legendary should be only aloud in special events.

    about gym spoofing, most gym spoofers like it easy. if you and your friends take the gym and prestige the gym and keep doing this for a week, the gym spoofer will go somewhere else. they want to take gym and hold it. also there is alot of gyms, check also remember you only benefit from 10 gyms, anymore gyms is no coins.

    • Burrito

      Your post is pathetic, pogo was meant to be a social game.

      • jon smith

        if im pathetic, u must be worse. do you play pokemon with a buddy, do u attack the pokemon together, do you see your buddy on your pokemon map, do you chat with other pokemon players in the game, do you strategize with other players. in that aspect it is not a real social game. there is nothing wrong with making the world a playground and going anywhere you want to play (even playing field), lets gps spoof for all!!!

        • Burrito

          Yep I play with a group of friends. Yes we stomp gyms.

          This ain’t Minecraft kid. You are supposed to open up the door and leave mom’s house. I am entertained that you think sitting on the couch spoofing is exploring the world

          • jon smith

            you parents must pay for everything, u lucky kid. some of us have to work 50+ hours and dont have time to play as much as you. all im saying is make the game fair to all, gps spoofing gives that opportunity to all. think of the events niantic could hold and everyone could be there, billions instead of thousands and no trash, no vandalism, no internet drops and connection problem, no crowd control, it would be peaceful. already cities are complaining about their parks getting trashed.

          • johann augustine

            Why force yourself to play Pokémon go if you can’t abide by the rules? Makes no sense at all…

    • Hans Nielsen

      How about you go play a game that’s less AR?

      • jon smith

        you know most dont play pure ar, because its so laggy and the novelty wears off. most use ar to take a pictures and then convert back. if you play pure ar, good for you, my phone can not handle it

    • johann augustine

      Why not play Pokémon on your game boy….. no need to walk then…


  • Kamaljot Jaswal

    I feel that Niantic may need to get rid of regional specific pokemon to reduce spoofers, kind of speaks for itself, not everyone has the time to hop on a plane to Japan to catch a Farfetch’d or Australia to catch a Kanghaskhan.

    • Hans Nielsen

      What Niantic should really do, is release a regional for Antarctica, and then ban everyone posessing one a week later 😉

  • irvingt13

    Sounds like a bunch of disgruntal iPhone users upset because the tools aren’t available to them in the app store. I guarantee if it was super easy for iPhone users to get a GPS spoof app they’d be right along with Android users and way less complaint. iPhone users have longed been envious of Android. So much more control of your phone with Android . Apple only allow you to do what they want you to do in the name of “security” and “user experience”. Android is open source and gps apps are always gonna be available. Developers use them all the time to test there apps. Even if Android ban them from the Play store the apk file can be downloaded anywhere else.


    Well here the point.
    See things from spoofers side and you will know what is wrong.
    The game requires you to travel and not only in your home country but abroad in order to get some region specifics.
    All the players are not so rich to go roaming all day and may of us spoofers are busy person who see this game as a time pass.
    But we don’t have time and energy to actually go out and play.
    So spoofing is the only way.
    And also some people are so poor that they can barely afford going out of their town, country is a far thought.
    Hope you don’t understand……
    A poor Pokémon Go player.

    • Hans Nielsen

      The game does not require you to travel. My dex is “complete”. That means All pokemons I can get in my region. No exclusives. No legendaries. No Mewtwo. If I ever travel travel to another region I’ll pick up the exclusive and treasure it, but my dex will be no more “complete” for it.

    • johann augustine

      Again, if you want a better game, go figure and design one, or find the one you like with so many choices offerings out there. Why should poor players ruin it for niantic and other legitimate players, rich or poor..

  • ハリンクィチウ アンドリュー

    They deserve to lose money over spoofing for being such a shit gaming company and releasing updates once a year with no changes.

    • David

      The game hasn’t even been out a year fyi.

    • johann augustine

      Well maybe u should design a better game, not ruin it for those who use it legitimately.

  • vision33r

    Don’t hate the player, hate the game.

    • BeekerC

      so is that like saying we shouldn’t hate the KKK and neo-Nazi’s, we should only hate racism? or that we shouldn’t hate al-Quaeda, ISIS, hezbolah, IRA, we should only hate terrorism.

      “don’t hate the player, hate the game”, much like communism – looks good on paper, but not so much in the real world.

    • Burrito

      Weak excuse.

  • irvingt13

    Sounds like a bunch of disgruntal iPhone users upset because the tools aren’t available to them in the app store. I guarantee if it was super easy for iPhone users to get a GPS spoof app they’d be right along with Android users and way less complaint.

  • IVA the LT

    I think you guys are confusing spoofers with bots.

    Bots are cheating, because you aren’t actually playing the game.

    But a spoofer? I don’t think that is cheating in the slightest. All it means is that you care enough about this stupid game to put in the TIME to overcome the flaws of this game.

    I’m not gonna put months and countless hours into a game revolving around collecting, only to find i can’t complete the collection without unreasonable expense and inconvenience.

    Niantic created this situation when they decided on regionally locked and geography based pokemon. It’s one thing in the handhelds when you can trade for exclusives or walk around different parts of the “world ” in the game, quite another when you can’t trade and you have to spend time and money to travel.

    If you can’t stay in a gym, get better pokemon. I’m in 30 gyms, and though I spoof for convenience, I’m still spending the time battling and grinding to get into them, even though I’m not standing there physically.

    • Hans Nielsen

      A spoofer? All that meas is that you don’t care enough about this stupid game to put in the TIME to actually WALK to the gyms. I’m consistently in 4 gyms, all of them remote ones I have to walk at least an hour to get to.


      • IVA the LT

        So…if I drive to a gym does that make me a “loser” or “cheater”?

        And I don’t think you understand how spoofing works. You have a joystick and you walk around. Walk to fast? Game locks out just like driving. Jump straight to gyms? The time you save is spent spinning the same stop 30-50 times to get unlocked. So the only difference is, instead of walking around in 30 degree weather, I’m walking around from the comfort of my room.

        It also sounds like you are rural, which sounds like a personal problem. I may be in 20-30 gym on a daily basis, but they are all gyms I see in my town/work area. I’m not going to random towns and trolling people, I’m taking gyms I could take in person if I didn’t work 60 hours a week.

        • johann augustine

          So what if you’re not greedy and take over 100s of gym s all over the world. Same thing, u use the same method s to cheat. Anytime you like to do that, you can, and that’s still unfair gameplay violating the rules

    • johann augustine

      Spoofers are still cheating at a game requiring or designed for walking. If that’s not your piece of cake easy solution is just DONT PLAY. So many other games out there for COUCH POTATOES

  • henrymart81

    This explains why I always see so much activity going on at gyms but I VERY RARELY ever see anybody out battling the gym. Some of these gyms are in wide open areas,without buildings or anything, so there’s no way someone could be hiding. I’ve reported tons of accounts but they are all still active. I have also been noticing a pattern where once I take over a gym, and say it gets to level 5 or level 6, within minutes someone will knock it down to like 5000 out of 8000 prestige, then if I train it back up they will knock it down again. Then in the wee hours of the morning it gets taken over and trained up super high and filled almost immediately. I’m level 37, with a lot of pretty good attackers and defenders.

    • johann augustine

      Same here, but I still see people go around so that’s still a good sign.. lots of obvious botters or spoofers though so niantic still has much to do in this area

  • Pascal F

    All you hypocrites who are quick to judge and jump to conclusions don’t have the slightest idea how difficult playing Pokemon GO can be. Boo hoo, there are only 7 gyms in your city, or 5, or 3… well guess what: there isn’t A SINGLE gym in a 50-mile radius from my city. And it’s not some village, it’s a city with a population of 50 000. There is ONLY ONE pokestop. ONE. And no gyms.
    Despite that I played as much as I could, walked 10-15 miles each day even though I couldn’t catch anything but rattata/weedle/pidgey and all that crap and I could only hatch one egg at a time because I had no coins for extra incubators. I was level 21 when I first saw a gym on one of my trips. Of course I couldn’t go anywhere near it with my weak Pokemon. By the time I got to level 23 continuing to play like that just became pointless. One of the apps on this website predicted that I would reach level 30 in 2027 and level 40 God knows when, if ever.
    Winter is pretty harsh here and it means no walking, not even to that one lonely pokestop, no bonus for spinning, no balls to catch rattata and pidgey so I was either going to quit the game or try and find a solution.
    Now I’m using an app that fakes my GPS position. It “moves” me couple of hundred miles away to the nearest city in which it’s actually possible to play Pokemon Go like a normal person. I am not ashamed to admit this and I don’t see it as cheating.
    If Niantic can’t give all the players equal opportunities to play and enjoy the game, why should we feel obliged to follow their rules.
    Of course none of you big city players will understand this and you will label me as a cheater and hope I get banned but I don’t care. Banning a small percentage of people who fake GPS is much easier than actually doing something to give everyone equal opportunities to enjoy the game and advance in it.

    • VanPelt

      I don’t spoof but I completely understand your situation with the spawns. I’m lucky enough to have a decent amount of stops and gyms but the spawns are literally all the same. I’m convinced that they only offer variety in cities only. I have no problem with people spoofing because of this very problem but I absolutely can’t stand people who spoof gyms. It completely defeats the purpose to even go after them because you’ll always be taken out immediately by a spoofer that has dozens of dragonites, gyradoses and snorlaxes because of their unfair advantage. Plus they don’t even need to go to the gym physically to take it.

      • Pascal F

        I’ve stayed in the city I mentioned for a while and I can confirm that the spawns are way different and better there as well as in other big cities I’ve visited. PoGO is a big city game.
        As for the gyms, I do the same as I did when I was there, if I’m near it I’ll put a pokemon in, but I have 1 dragonite, 2 guardos, not dosens, so I doubt I ruin it for anyone.

    • Tom

      Hey, I got really skinny, short legs but would like to run 100m at the Olympics for my country. You think I should give doping a go?

      • Pascal F

        Unfortunately for you no doping can make you less stupid.

    • Patrick Favret

      Children in Africa don’t have phones to play pokemongo.

      • scubear

        Why wouldn’t they? There are plenty of prosperous areas in Africa.

    • johann augustine

      Sad to see how u see it to justify cheating.. so what if it takes years as long as you play legit? You get bored anyway once you hit level 40.. the faster you get there, the more meaningless it becomes for you.

      The challenge is not getting there, but the process of getting there.. cheaters have no idea at all…

  • Alexzander Van Postle

    I have used a GPS faker, and still do at times. However, 25 of my 26 levels were earned in the field, and the only tool I have is the ability to walk around. I still have to catch my own pokemon, spin the stops and battle the gyms myself.
    I’m presently caring full time for my mother, and can’t actually leave her alone. So the GPS override lets me play as if I were outside 😉
    I remain in my neighborhood in my hometown. The faker also let’s my fiance who just had major surgery play from bed, and she’s enjoyed the new gen2 pokemon greatly. She gets so excited, and we get to play together.

    I think the issue is not with GPS, but with the easy availability of programs that run pokemon go remotely, harvesting and such without human interaction. That’s no fun and takes the fun out of the game in my opinion.

    … And how are people even getting to larvitar to get a tyrannitar?!

    • johann augustine

      Like me.. still doing it the hard way.. 60 more candies by hatch or buddy before tyranitar tho…

  • vision33r

    Spoofing only hurts businesses that pay Niantic money for the Pokestops and get nothing in return. Any player that complains about spoofers with High CP Pokemons capping Gyms. Learn 2 play? This is the easiest MMO that requires no skills and no money to win.

    • David

      What are you on about? Learn to play? How does that even make sense? When one person is cheating and the other is not, learning to play isn’t the issue. When I have to drive from spot to spot and then to my nearest pokestop farm and they can just sit on their couch, that is a real and significant advantage that no amount of “learning to play” can overcome.

      • johann augustine

        True true.. they are all over the place while I can only go to 1 gym at a time walking.. game will be better without them

  • Javier

    I recommend an algorithm to ban cheaters, consisting of several flags, that activate when it detects a “sketchy” characteristic in a player account.
    Let’s begin, some people are worried that some legit players can get banned if they start to ban players left and right.
    So the first flag would be “True” if the player has been reported by the ticket system at Niantic Support, if that is the case then Niantic should proceed to look at the account with more detail.
    Next they should check if the player has an abnormal amount of the “meta” Pokemon, you know things like 15 Snorlax 10 Dragonites 9 Gyarados etc.
    Then if thats true they should check the IV of the Pokemon, if the majority of them have above 85%, then it should be a clue that something is going on.
    Later in order to evoid the “well some legit players have x amount of perfect or near perfect pokemon” they should check the LOCATION where that pokemon was caught, everybody knows that cheaters get coordinates that lead to High Level High or Perfect Iv pokemon like perfect Snorlax Lapras etc, they should check if the Pokemon come from radical different countries, which i know for a fact that cheaters get Dragonites from China then Gyarados from Santa Monica and Long beach in USA.
    That should be a clear giveaway that something fishy is going on.
    Next they should check if they have some of those “legit” Pokemon are in gyms, cheaters use their 3000+cp high or perfect Iv pokemon to take down enemy gyms and then hold them along with other cheaters to get coins everyday, usually they are not satisfied with getting the maximum defender bonus which is acquired by having 10 different pokemon in 10 different gyms at the same time, they usually go to many more gyms, controlling entire cities and leaving non cheaters, friend or foes, unable to get in the gym and get the bonus.
    After that they should double check if the player has been reported for cheating or another rule breaking behavior, next they should check the locations that the player has been in the past 48 hours, if they change dramatically then it should be pretty clear that they are cheating.
    After ALL those flags have turned true then the report should be submitted to somebody that checks the information provided then he either could ban the player or make another search to see if he cheats or not.
    Those flags give a pretty clear giveaway that someone is cheating so immediate ban is my choice.
    Sorry for the long post but i think using this extensive algorithm could help banning players for good.

  • P-necio

    In Chile we have all the gyms with spoofers, specially Team Mystic, I report several times a player called Jhonny21Plus since 6 months ago, this guy spoof all the time and never get banned 🙁

  • VanPelt

    I’ve heard niantic actually started taking a step towards fixing this by banning some of these farmed accounts on eBay that were coming from South Korea. Hopefully they keep this up.

    • vision33r

      I heard that last year too.

      • VanPelt

        They did a ban wave like in August or September where they caught a friend of mine spoofing but this ban was like kinda recent like a month or two ago.

    • Nick Wilson

      I had a friend get banned. Lol I told her don’t do it.

      • VanPelt

        Kinda surprised unless they did a recent big ban wave.

        • Nick Wilson

          Yeah. So I will not cheat… I worked hard for my account

    • johann augustine

      Yea, as niantic is already funded for years, they should just keep doing bans regularly until only legits remain or the botters give up… if they don’t, then just let em get banned all the time

  • khaled arabic

    this is way i stop play pokémon go i just wait to fix the spoof probléme pliz niantic just stop tham

  • Hektor M

    I think they may have finally put an end to spoofing at least for the next few days! Time to take down some level 10 spoofed gyms…

    • johann augustine

      Until the botters get their levels up again.. that being said, niantic should keep this up and ban monthly so they tire out or give up…

  • Javier

    I recommend an algorithm to ban cheaters, consisting of several flags, that activate when it detects a “sketchy” characteristic in a player account.
    Let’s begin, some people are worried that some legit players can get banned if they start to ban players left and right.
    So the first flag would be “True” if the player has been reported by the ticket system at Niantic Support, if that is the case then Niantic should proceed to look at the account with more detail.
    Next they should check if the player has an abnormal amount of the “meta” Pokemon, you know things like 15 Snorlax 10 Dragonites 9 Gyarados etc.
    Then if thats true they should check the IV of the Pokemon, if the majority of them have above 85%, then it should be a clue that something is going on.
    Later in order to evoid the “well some legit players have x amount of perfect or near perfect pokemon” they should check the LOCATION where that pokemon was caught, everybody knows that cheaters get coordinates that lead to High Level High or Perfect Iv pokemon like perfect Snorlax Lapras etc, they should check if the Pokemon come from radical different countries, which i know for a fact that cheaters get Dragonites from China then Gyarados from Santa Monica and Long beach in USA.
    That should be a clear giveaway that something fishy is going on.
    Next they should check if they have some of those “legit” Pokemon are in gyms, cheaters use their 3000+cp high or perfect Iv pokemon to take down enemy gyms and then hold them along with other cheaters to get coins everyday, usually they are not satisfied with getting the maximum defender bonus which is acquired by having 10 different pokemon in 10 different gyms at the same time, they usually go to many more gyms, controlling entire cities and leaving non cheaters, friend or foes, unable to get in the gym and get the bonus.
    After that they should double check if the player has been reported for cheating or another rule breaking behavior, next they should check the locations that the player has been in the past 48 hours, if they change dramatically then it should be pretty clear that they are cheating.
    After ALL those flags have turned true then the report should be submitted to somebody that checks the information provided then he either could ban the player or make another search to see if he cheats or not.
    Those flags give a pretty clear giveaway that someone is cheating so immediate ban is my choice.
    Sorry for the long post but i think using this extensive algorithm could help banning players for good.

    • Javier

      Don’t flag as spam please 🙂

  • Josh

    I started playing Pokemon go in November and have played it every day since and I still enjoy it but I live on the outskirts of a small town and there is only one pokestop and one gym near me (15 minute walk)so as you can imagine there isn’t too much to shout about in my area(Pidgey & Rattata). The only time I can maybe catch some good Pokemon is when I go into the town centre and even then the spawns are not great and because I don’t drive yet I’m rarely in the town centre as it is a 10 mile round trip. The problem I have with Pokemon go, is that there’re just not enough decent spawns in my area. The other day I saw a Cyndaquil on my sightings whilst sat at home so I went outside and went to known areas where Pokemon spawn in regularly and was searching until he was no longer on my sightings list. Now bearing in mind gen 2 has been out for a few weeks now and a lot people have probably got the 3rd stage evolution for the starters that was the first starter I have even seen and still didn’t manage to get it because there is no way unless it was near the pokestop to accurately know its whereabouts (need a tracking system for pokemon in the sightings list). Another problem that I and I am sure many people have is the regional exclusive Pokemon. The whole concept of Pokemon is to catch’em all now I and most of the game users don’t have the money to travel to different continents to catch the regional exclusive Pokemon. Now if Niantic are planning on doing a regional migration then this point is moot and is about time as I’m sick of Mr. Mine I want a Heracross please. Now on GPS spoofing I not for it but I’m not totally against it either if people are GPS spoofing to take down Gyms all the time then piss off because that actually helps them get coins and stardust so it actually gives them an advantage, luckily I don’t think that’s an issue in my town as I’ve been in 3 gyms for a couple of weeks now. However I don’t think it’s that big of a problem if people are using it just to catch some Pokemon because they can’t physically do it or their area is bad for it. I actually tried GPS spoofing the other day and it was initially cool to be in my town centre where there are better spawns and more pokestops whilst sitting on my sofa, I didn’t get the same buzz as when I went out actually grinding it out round my area doing late night hunts with my friends.

  • GonzoI

    Spoofers deserve the full blame. They aren’t actually playing the game (just as a footrace requires actually getting on your feet and running, Pokemon GO requires actually GOING). They are knowingly harming actual players (in your example, they’re stealing a source of resources from actual players). It’s been made clear in every corner of the Pokemon GO online community that people are quitting the game in frustration over the spoofers. There is no redeeming excuse (and I’ve heard plenty of bad attempts at making excuses, ranging from faux-concern over disabled players to BS claims that they can’t find pokemon in less-rural areas than where I completed my pokedex on foot). They need to be stopped and have their ill-gotten gains deleted with no misplaced sympathy for the non-effort they put into ruining the game for others.

    As for Niantic and other’s alleged share of the blame, not locking your door does not give others a license to steal, nor does it take ANY of the responsibility off of the shoulders of thieves. Niantic and others can and should be better at what they do, just as you should lock your door, but that doesn’t make it their fault people spoof or your fault someone steals.

    • johann augustine

      I’m with you there buddy.

  • Debra Khaljani

    I already have considered quitting. After reading comments I think why should I spend anymore money and play for up to 10 hours a day when SPOOFERS will always be ahead of me. It’s disheartening. Im a slightly handicapped disable senior citizen that had found a way to have some fun and be competitive. But I won’t cheat. I might be out at level 36!!! Instead of spending money on lures, incubators and lucky eggs I’ll buy some good Tequilla.

    • vision33r

      You’re disabled and handicapped do you really think you have a chance even against kids that don’t spoof?

  • Μηνας Γραικός

    Send it to Niantic !!

  • m00ncake

    I agree with this article including that Niantic should prevent GPS spoofing, but disagree that “Player reports and eventual bans are almost completely ineffective, as the spoofers can advance at a pace that is incredibly fast and impossible for others.”

    If they can detect spoofing then it should always result in a permanent ban. The ban is as severe as the length of time spent spoofing.

    I might be misinterpreting. You might mean that player reports are ineffective (true), but not that bans are ineffective. But if you’re saying bans are ineffective because “the spoofers can advance at a pace that is incredibly fast and impossible for others,” then I disagree.

  • scot finch

    It was a fight of eeveelution battle in my place for a good long while, heck even Pidgeot can enter a gym, then suddenly every gym is occupied by max CP Blissey. My small town which was full of color suddenly painted in blue and there is no way local players can deal with it, we try.

    That’s it, I quit. I wish I quit before I invest money on this game though.

  • Matthew McGregor

    I gps spoof but solely for the reason that I can’t get region locked pokemon and I am not spending a fortune to travel to all these places. Really stupid idea from Niantic.

  • Jim B.

    I don’t blame SOME spoofers at all, I have several friends who have had to resort to spoof just to be able to find a pokestop. It’s not equal coverage. I mean how popular was the game Niantic used for their app really? I had never even heard of it before Pokemon go. Is it their fault they have to resort to such a tactic? It’s not a cheat, and it’s not a hack. Hell, how can you even be sure, that those “gym hunters” aren’t just a bunch of friends who don’t have the ability to travel an hour or two just for a game on a regular basis?
    (Out of the 100 odd people i talk to regular on my fb, 35 of them live in areas that have little to no pokestops/gyms. Go through your own friends and figure out how many of your buds are unable to play unless they spoof)

  • Craig

    Here’s my letter I just sent to Niantic:

    It’s taken me 7 months to get to Level 30, but I did it by playing the game honestly. I have visited 5,970 Pokestops, walked 413 Km, hatched over 100 eggs and won 512 gym battles. I have purchased about $40 of in-app purchases and another $35 on the Go Plus accessory… I AM A CUSTOMER and these spoofers who are knocking own my gyms are THIEVES. They’ve dominated the game without leaving the house I can’t keep up with them.

    I remember when the game used to be fun and groups of people met up in parks and searched high and low to find a Lapras that was nearby. Nowadays, you just install some crap on your phone that gives you free Tyranitars, teleport yourself to the nearest gym and tear it down in 1 minute using your 3 fake accounts.

    I’ve lost the will to be a player in this game when my hard word and
    purchases amount to nothing. So I am requesting a refund for all my
    wasted in-app purchased and a return shipping label to send back your
    Pokemon Go Plus that barely works. In two months of using it, my FitBit
    has recorded me walking 78 miles whereas your app only gave me 30.

    I feel like I’ve been totally ripped off and would appreciate a refund. If you won’t take back your Go Plus, I’ll just sell it on eBay, but seriously. That thing is garbage and it disconnects every 3-5 minutes.

  • tiz0r

    also, they need to handle all the reports sent about cheaters, since october I think we have sent ~3-4 reports a week about the SAME players in our area, with video proof from a place as you describe, an area without buildings near, a lonely platform by the river in our city.

    The problem is not that you can get spoofing apps easy at play store, the problem is that niantic doesnt do a shit about incoming reports.

  • Kcee S

    Being a techy guy, i can safely say that a person whos willing to root their device cannot be stopped from spoofing. But the rest of the spoofers are another story and iam pretty sure most spoofers would be having an unrooted phone, so niantic should be able to stop the majority of spoofers with some effort.

  • sewhappynky

    It is difficult to play if you are confined to a wheelchair, epileptic, and the nearest pokestop is 4-5 miles away. My husband recently died. Pokemon Go is fun, but I have to uber or ask friends to drive me to doctors, therapy, etc. I cannot ask them to take me to look for pokemon. More pokestops would be great, but that isn’t happening in my rural area. If I had a pokestop nearby, I could enjoy the game more, like urban game players.

  • Sean Thum

    Thank you for writing about this major issue

  • Aaron Freeman

    Did you all forget that this is a free app? Much like Facebook, some people use it to k.i.t and others use it to troll. It’s up to you if you want to dump money into any activity that brings you momentary joy but it is rediculous to think that anyone has cheated you out of the true pokemon experience. Not everyone has endless hours to sit around at a park and fill up their back pack with items. Some people live close and some far from stops and gyms. Should social class decide who progresses in this game. This game is the first of its kind and has helped improve the physical and mental health of many people. Example; Since this app was released, the number of daily hits to porn sites went down. Appreciate it for what it is worth to you but don’t expect others to meet your unrealistic expectations.

  • Kenshin Himura

    How about you fuck off and let us play how we want. NOBODY is going to play your shit game if they can’t cheat. Who wants to walk miles just to hatch a fucking egg? NOBODY, that’s who. Literally nobody but cheaters play this game now because the game sucks without cheating. People don’t have time to walk around town spinning pokestops and battling at gyms. You wanna know what they do have time for? Sitting from the comforts of home while using a fake gps app to play this game. Trust me. EVERYONE IS CHEATING NOW. it’s so blatantly obvious. Ask yourself why the same guy owns every gym in town and how he magically has 20 dragonites and they are all over 3,000 cp…. just let everyone play the game how we want to play and your game won’t die. Try and stop us and you will lose and your game will die.

  • Matt Holden

    Niantic started the investigation into GPS spoofing with the region locked pokemon. Pretty absurd that in addition to the $20/week it takes to grind at level 31 if playing legit, I’m expected to log about 10,000 air miles if I want to “Catch ’em all” and get the content I’m paying for. I luck out that, living in central Florida, I at least get to hook into getting Corsola and Heracross, but I had to travel to Georgia to get a Tauros.

  • Joe Az

    Nobody will play and pay unless they spoof bot or cheat? Wrong. I am totally legit, walked literally thousands of miles, got to level 34 LEGITIMATELY, has only a Blissey at 2600 cp, no tyranitar, and one maxed out dragonite only. I have played sibce day one, occasionally makes purchases, and plan to play for many years more. Now these cheaters are cheating on a freaking free to play game- whats the point with that- and I am glad niantic is making some effort to ban them. If they are gone from this game, so be it, no one will miss them. Cheat elsewhere.

  • Jeffrey Wilbur

    It’s BS that all of this GPS spoofing is being attacked so much there’s no reason for Niantic to get all high and mighty about people cheating in a game when Niantic leaves no other option when it comes to trying to play the full game to it’s potential making it to where Pokémon are only allowed to be gotten either through egg which is pretty much a roulette game or having to fork out hundreds of dollars or even thousands of dollars to get plane tickets to travel to other parts of the world to be able to actually collect Pokémon or play with other people who are friends who just happen to be in another country if they don’t want people cheating make it so people don’t feel the need to

    • Jeffrey Wilbur

      And for other people such as those who are disabled and can’t move around very well but would like to actually play the game how are they supposed to do things

  • Nick Wilson

    I’m level 39 and how you ask cause I’m not fat and freakin lazy. Board no just bad ass at pogo. Will I continue to play heck yeah… You wanna spoof go a head and spoof ill just kick your but back out of the Damb gym with my hard earned 100%dragonites and other bad pokies. So bring it with you weak ass spoofing.