Esports Betting / Riot Vanguard: The anti-cheat software that actually works - but is it safe?
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Riot Vanguard: The anti-cheat software that actually works - but is it safe?

Publish Date:21/02/2024
Fact checked by: Alyx Tzamantanis

esports gamerSadly, cheating is rife in the gaming world, and whether you’re a professional esports player or one of millions of competitive hobbyists, it negatively impacts the experience. In FPS games like Valorant, it is thought that 30% of all players may be cheating in one way or another at any given time.

This has led to something of an arms race between the cheat software pirates and the game developers. For a while, it looked like the bad guys were winning, that was until the latest Valroant anti-cheat software came into play from Riot Games…

Interesting Facts:

  • Around 30% of all players in competitive queues or esports are cheating.
  • Riot Games has developed its own anti-cheat software
  • The software is in-built and automatically installs with the Valorant game.
  • The software runs in the background and uses Kernel Level Access
  • It has proven to be one of the most effective anti-cheat software systems out there.
  • When cheating players are identified they are banned for a length of time or indefinitely.
  • The software updates and has been effective in combating new and changing cheat methods.
  • The software has caused controversy though because of the amount of access it has to your system and personal data.

What is Riot Vanguard? The best Valroant anti-cheat software

Cheating is probably the most frustrating thing in the gaming world for all of us honest players. At an amateur level, competitive online gaming is consistently being ruined by those who refuse to fight fair.

At a professional esports level, the stakes are even higher, as cheating not only affects the players but also the way that you bet on esports. So much so that betting sites now have to calculate potential cheat software being used when setting their odds for esports games.

So has Riot Games found a solution with Vanguard Anti-cheat?

There is some good news for Valorant players, as Riot Games has developed Vanguard, its own in-built anti-cheat software. This installs automatically with the game and has proven to be the most effective anti-cheat software that we’ve seen so far.

According to a report from Riot Games DEV at the end of 2023, ban rates were largely stable throughout the year. What’s more impressive is that more than half of the bans were preventative, showing that most cheaters were getting caught and banned before properly getting started.

How is Riot Vanguard so proactive and preventative?

Several things have made Vanguard on Valorant so successful when it comes to proactive cheating prevention. Below, we have summarized the main contributing factors:

Bans - When cheaters are detected, they are given initial bans of 90-120 days, with repeat or serious offending users being dealt lifetime bans. As we said before, ban rates with Valorant anti-cheat have remained high, and proactive bans account for more than 50%.

Kernel Mode - Vanguard has Kernel-level access, which gives it complete privileges and access to your entire computer system. It also runs in the background even when you are not playing Valorant, so it is doing its job 24/7 on all player accounts.

AI technology - This is one of the best AI-run anti-cheat software systems, meaning that it goes beyond mere cheat detection. It can scour the web and see what the cheaters are about to do next in the so-called “arms race”.

Social media - One of the main ways that the cheaters market their pirated software is over social media. Both Vanguard's AI anti-cheat software and the Riot Games team spend time trolling through these accounts so that they can proactively combat them.

VAN:RESTRICTION - This recent addition to the Vanguard software adds an extra layer of security. Therefore, as well as stopping cheaters, it also protects you against several other risks.

Is Riot Vanguard safe?

Online SecurityThe access that Riot Vanguard has to your computer and personal data has understandably raised some concerns among the Valorant community. While this is unsettling, there is absolutely no proof to suggest that Riot Games has been using this privilege with malicious intent.

Without this unmitigated level of access, it wouldn’t be able to be as effective as it is. Still, the fact that these concerns are out there does have a negative knock-on effect.

In fact, one of the biggest weapons that cheat software developers have against Riot Vanguard right now, is the “It’s a Chinese spy software” conspiracy theory. Unsurprisingly, the facts point to this being total rubbish

Although you don’t have to actively install Vanguard, as it comes with Valorant Automatically, you can disable and uninstall it. This ultimately does reduce the amount of access the software has, but it doesn’t appear to have affected its performance that badly thus far.

Conclusion

In summary, Valorant anti-cheat is definitely the most effective software that we’ve seen so far, as the fairness of the game has measurably increased. What’s most impressive, however, is its performance in the cheat vs anti-cheat arms race, as Riot Games is one of the few good guys that seems to be winning right now.

Overall, this has made the game fairer at a professional esports level as well, making it one of the best games to bet on right now. Speaking of which, you can find the top betting apps with free bets right here at Strafe.

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