Pokémon GO developer Niantic Labs on Thursday said it had begun issuing permanent bans to players who were found cheating in the game. In a post on the game’s official website, the company said it had started terminating players’ accounts after “reviewing many reports of in-game cheating”.
The company said its main priority for GO was to “provide a fair, fun and legitimate game experience for all players.” However, it added that it will allow players to request the reinstatement of their account if they believed it had been “terminated incorrectly”. It also posted a link where players can submit their requests for reinstatement.
The official announcement comes nearly a week after developers of Pokémon GO bots – software that allows players to automate portions of the location-based game – said that they had started receiving cease-and-desist letters from Niantic, Polygon reported. The game, which was released early in July, combines the world of Pokémon (a fantasy-cum science-fiction franchise partly owned by Nintendo) with real-world locations. However, there have been reports of players using bots to hack the game, giving them an unfair advantage over regular users.