Exploit found which can lead cheating

Three years ago almost to the day, Chris Pritchard published a video where he tested the effects of height on in-game speeds. As expected it made quite a difference.

Importantly though, after the testing he also openly and explicitly shows how to [redacted] (using the game’s settings menu rather than ZC) and as long as you [redacted], it won’t show up on ZwiftPower and will therefore be ‘undetectable’. He explains that multiple people have tried it, and that he’d done it himself in a race the day before, which he’d live streamed. This is a prominent YouTuber, well known to Zwift HQ. I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong but as far as I’m aware, he wasn’t banned for doing this and clearly Zwift haven’t addressed this massive flaw since then. He openly states that it’s not intended as a guide how to cheat, but though he could have kept it to himself, he felt it was important to publicise it so it could be fixed.

No difference whatsoever to what’s happened here.

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Bullies never pick on the popular kid, they find an easy target who is less likely to fight back… Zwift chose poorly…

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Nothing will be done or commented on until afte the worlds

I assume the aggressive response is because it’s embarrassing to them with the UCI going on and then trying to establish themselves as THE e-cycling race platform.

Unfortunately, they’ve channeled that into punishing the whistleblower, which, whatever they privately felt about his actions, makes them look petulant rather than in control or concerned with race integrity.

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Hello all,

I have been informed by ZwiftHQ that my account should be unbanned today!

They’ll be releasing a statement on all of this soon, with some added good news apparently.

Thank you all for your immense support

Luciano

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That’s great news @Luciano_Pollastri_ZE

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I would like to personally issue an update on a situation that has escalated over the last 48 hours, concerning a ban imposed on a Zwift community member.

Having been brought up to speed, it is clear to me that this situation could have been better handled by both parties. The performance increasing exploit was until now, relatively unknown both within Zwift and outside, but this is no excuse to not have addressed it. The exploit is detectable, and we have the ability to look back and identify those to have used it. That said, our priority is not to look back, but to look forward, and fix this as a matter of priority in one of the upcoming game releases.

For this reason, we have taken the decision to lift the 30-Day shadow ban issued to Luciano. For clarity, a shadow ban does not prevent a Zwifter from using Zwift, they simply do not show to others.

Neither party had ill intent and I can only apologise to all involved, but in particular to Luciano himself. We have an obligation to the community to address exploits on the platform and will fix this particular exploit as a matter of priority.

It is important for us to uphold our terms of service as they exist to protect the enjoyment of the majority of Zwifters. Rather than share information on how to exploit a performance bug, we would always encourage members of the community to come forward to Zwift with performance exploits they find. The process on how to bring such issues to the attention of Zwift hasn’t always been clear, so in order to improve this, we plan to introduce a bug bounty program that will not only make it easier for Zwifters to highlight issues but will also reward them for doing so. We will need time to develop this program but will share information in due course.

Thanks,
Eric Min
Co-founder & CEO

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#freedLuciano!

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Glad I didn’t post about the second big problem before Zwift announced a bounty :joy::joy::joy:

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Boo. Spill the beans!

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Oooohhh, congrats Luciano! :+1:

Now I have to hop on the bike quickly. Want to enjoy the way down the AdZ at 500 kg and 20 cm before it’s no longer possible :sunglasses:

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Thank you for the update. We all want the best for Zwift, that’s why we’re here.

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@Eric on a more serious note, thanks, we got there in the end. Hopefully good comes of this, and also hopefully it has opened your eyes to some of the wider and deeper issues Zwift has in terms of community engagement. Looking forward to seeing improvements over the next few months.

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I’m crying. Crazy 72hours… you have been amazing mate @Luciano_Pollastri_ZE #LucianoIsFree

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Some faith restored in Zwift’s decision-making abilities.
In the short term, Eric Min’s apology to Luciano stands out most for me, right now.
It is Zwift’s concrete actions in the longer term that will really count.

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Thank you for stepping in! It’s good to see that in the end not only the issue got into focus point at Zwift and Luciano got unbanned, but even a probability of a bug hunting program got underway!

Crazy few days, which in the end hopefully results in a better world in- and out of game :slight_smile: :pray:

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There’s a nice hint of contradiction in there between “a matter of priority” and “one of the upcoming game releases”…

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So good to see that clearer minds are able to read a situation and do the right thing.

Zwift has shined in this respect twice in the past 2 weeks.

This response makes me very hopeful for the future.

Thank you for listening to your community.

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Thank you for making this right. Membership: resumed.

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A good start would be to take user-submitted reports of cheating or bad hardware set-ups in races more seriously at the pointy end of Zwift racing. I’ve submitted many reports only to have them all ignored.

I also submitted a bug report on Jan 10, 2021 about changing vitals mid-race. It got acknowledged, but obviously nothing was done. I’d actually forgotten about this official submission… I initially remembered only posting the bug report to the ZwiftPower forums.

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