While the CS:GO spectator bug at the centre of a massive ESIC cheating investigation has now been patched by developers Valve, one of the referees helping the investigation has warned there could be more bugs that could be exploited – some of which are potentially worse than the first.
Appearing on the HLTV Confirmed podcast, esports referee Michal Slowinski was being quizzed about the process he went through to first identify cheaters using the CS:GO spectator bug. When host Chad ‘SPUNJ’ Burchill alluded to the fact the bug was no longer in the game, Slowinski admits that there are at least “two more different instances that we might be looking into right now.” The referee also clarifies that these are different variations of the coach spectator bug and that they can actually offer “more of an advantage” than the initial bug that is currently being investigated by ESIC.
“[The first] instance of the bug has now been fixed, but unfortunately there might be more,” Slowinski says. “I think there might be like two more different instances that we are looking into right now. It’s actually even more of an advantage, so let’s hope it’s not too bad.”
While this sounds like a troubling prospect, with several coaches already being found guilty or confessing to using the initial bug, Slowinski claims that these new bugs have much more random methods of activation and that so far he has not been able to reliably replicate them.
“[The new bugs] offer similar possibilities. Different activations, obviously. I think it’s more random. Unfortunately we didn’t get a way to reproduce it yet, but we did find some weird suspicious demos where people get a third person view of a certain player, and you can rotate around the player which is obviously quite an advantage.”
This hopefully points to them being much rarer than the first bug, and thus creating fewer potential opportunities for CS:GO coaches to use it to their advantage.
ESIC’s current investigation launched on September 4, and is currently in its ‘confession period’ which has seen three CS:GO coaches already come forward and admit to exploiting the spectator bug.
The investigation will look at over 25,000 hours of demo footage and is expected to take eight months to complete. If evidence suggests that these two other variations of the bug have been utilised as well, that time frame could well increase – along with the amount of footage that would need to be reviewed.