Cheating and insertion of illegal codes within games played by professional gamers during large online gaming tournaments could soon be detected and halted. Kaspersky recently launched a custom-made cloud-based online anti-cheat solution that finds anomalies and potential game tampering attempts. Although the anti-cheat solution currently has limited scope, Kaspersky may expand the availability of the same, making it difficult for individuals who routinely attempt to gain an unfair advantage by altering the in-game parameters using cheat codes.
Kaspersky Anti Cheat Solution Direly Needed By eSports and Online Gaming Industry:
Organizers claim the problem widely exists during the massive qualifier rounds which allow gamers to play using their own machines while sitting in remote locations. In several cases, even reaching as far as the qualifying rounds can earn gamers cash rewards worth thousands of dollars. While justifying the need of such a system, Alexander Chegrinez, chief business development officer at StarLadder said, “Many players may cheat to earn real money from prize places or to qualify for tournaments. This growing tendency can undermine confidence in the eSports industry and decrease the popularity of online tournaments.” In the last few years, several eSports and online gaming tournaments have grown in popularity and attracted a lot of money. This is a strong incentive to cheat.
Incidentally, massive online and virtual game tournament organizers can inquire about Kaspersky’s new service on the Kaspersky Anti-Cheat homepage. Currently, the service reportedly works only on PCs, and presumably on Windows Operating System (OS). Moreover, the system is custom-designed, and hence currently supports two games: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG). Needless to add, even with the limited applicability, Kaspersky has made a professional solution to detect and cease cheating in two of the most popular online games.
How Does Kaspersky Anti-Cheat Protect Online Gaming Tournaments From Cheats?
The new system, simply called Kaspersky Anti-Cheat debuted at the StarLadder Berlin Major 2019, a professional CS:GO e-sports tournament that just concluded. Cybersecurity software maker Kaspersky Lab claimed that developing a custom cheat detection and alert mechanism isn’t far away from what they do on a regular basis. The antivirus maker develops detection and alert mechanism against viruses, malware, and hackers, and game cheats are essentially the same, noted Kaspersky’s Nikolay Pankov,
“Cheating in professional e-sports is basically another cyberthreat, and software cheats are not all that different from malware. Our solution is cloud-based for real-time monitoring of attempts to cheat during a competition, providing judges with technical confirmation of the use of cheats. Although the final verdict comes from a human judge, the system makes it easier to determine whether a player cheated. And, crucially, our system has no impact on performance or gameplay; all number-crunching is done on cloud servers, not on players’ machines.”
Kaspersky Anti-Cheat aims to squash cheaters in esports, online games https://t.co/YT6PJWUNYo
— James Byers (@jamesbyerj) September 9, 2019
Pankov neatly summarized what Kaspersky Anti Cheat solution does. The solution is a cloud-based offering consisting of a client app for gamers and a web-based dashboard for tournament organizers. Players participating in the tournament would have to start the application. Once up and running, the platform would detect attempts to tamper with a game’s normal mode of operation and report any issues to a web-based dashboard.
Tournament organizers and match referees, having access to the dashboard, can receive alerts about possible attempts at deploying in-game cheat codes or illegally changing game parameters through code manipulation. Essentially, in its current version, the Kaspersky Anti Cheat solution gives control to stop gamers from participating or progressing.
Only 12% of #gamers confessed they never had their multiplayer gaming spoiled by unfair actions of other players. Here’s how @Kaspersky’s new Anti-Cheat solution aims to helps: https://t.co/7tBrTMkW6Q
— Vasilij (26+) (@staff_nowa) September 10, 2019
Cheating has always been a problem for the online gaming industry, and the money at stake is increasing too. This has spurred development of several standard anti-cheat solutions like Valve Anti-Cheat (VAC), BattlEye, PunkBuster, etc. Protecting the integrity of eSports is getting increasingly important since several such events rival or even outmatch classic sporting events. Hence it appears Kaspersky has an interesting arena to offer its solutions.