A plea to add transparency to ban


Montreal region was hit with a ban wave. I want to first thank Niantic OPS for working with the multiple reporter (both ENL and RES) to ban all spoofer from the game, we all agree that spoofer are bad for the game.

Back to the ban wave: several of those banned players have no idea why they were banned and they want to appeal the ban.

Those  same agents are writing big wall of text of what occurred in their Ingress life in the past couple of month, trying to hit <something> or proof that they didn’t do <something> while in the dark. It is pretty hard for them to appeal that ban occured because of <something> when you don’t even know what that something is.

I’m writing this discussion to kindly ask Niantic to revised their transparency policy: A ban should include a reason, it needs transparency.

Thanks for your time,



  • I feel a vague descriptor like you get for portal rejections could be acceptable, but they can't spill out specific acts that triggered their detection system for obvious reasons.

  • GrogyanGrogyan ✭✭✭✭

    As mentioned by several game companies,

    Alerting the player to the reason they were banned, allows a method for those that always intend to cheat, to evade the system detection

  • AsphraennaAsphraenna ✭✭
    edited November 2019

    I'm with K4L3v on that point. Actually my husband was banned yesterday.. He had a founder badge and I started ingress later to have fun with him. He mostly stop but did some actions and not just in my company. We never shared phones, passwords or anything. Maybe like 2-3 times inventory over a year, so clearly not a backpacking account.. and I do have all the VR. His inventory was not that good, just what you need to play and local keys as far as we can remember. We planned to play ingress like old time next week and Niantic stop that. No way to know why he was ban. We're waiting on the ban appeal.. but if we look at the Niantic historic, it's a loss of time even if we know we did'nt broke the TOS..

    We talked about maybe he could start a new account, but we will eventually face the same problem if it's what we (our local faction) think cause Niantic won't tell... and not even just give a strike as a warning. So, if I can't play with my husband, that means less time together. I've already slow down on Ingress cause of him barely playing. So I waiting to know if I still play, or just stay a player on call for my faction. I'll clearly choose time in family over Niantics games if we can't do both at the same time. And that would be sad. I can't believe there's no way to see that we didn't cheat (If they say he cheated and close his account, that mean I cheated too).

    I know we are not alone in this situation. There's a lot of complain online about it. And no one in case like us seems to get an answer.. they just do think this is the reason cause we can find another reason.

    Post edited by Asphraenna on
  • OK, I'm happy to walk through this. If I'm a spoofer, and I get banned, and the email says I was banned for spoofing, what have I learned?

  • Yes, being told "You were spoofing" isn't nearly enough information to help a cheater evade bans in the future. The significant delay between cheating and the consequences further hides what action, exactly, got the cheater caught.

  • Don't spoof. Duh :)

    There's no need for specifics as to how they were detected. At least a vague reason would be helpful when it comes to appeals, something everyone should be entitled to, especially when the false positive rate seems higher than a game company would like to admit.

  • Merci c'est bien dit 👍

  • XK150XK150 ✭✭✭✭

    A vague reason doesn't help at all. If Niantic tells me I'm banned for spoofing, and I'm not spoofing, what can I write to do to prove I'm not?

    I can't, really. All giving me a vague reason does is provide a topic sentence for the meaningless wall of text I'm going to write. I'm still not going to write anything that proves Niantic wrong.

    Giving people reasons doesn't really help Niantic at all, so I'm not surprised they don't bother.

  • That pretty much the issue FALSE positive exist and if the system do not allow those player to reclaim their account then they are getting robbed.

    To (re)etablishing trust with players, like Pongolyn is stating, a change need to be done. Otherwise it worst asking myself why I am investing time in a game where I can pretty much get ban tomorrow due to a FALSE report or FALSE positive in the system.

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