Mobile GamesNewsPokémon GO

Pokemon Go Three-Strike Policy, Niantic “Please note that due to the high level of accuracy in our detection systems, very few terminations are ever overturned”

Trainers, like any video game where players must follow the rules and play by them, Pokemon Go has rules and regulations that must be followed to avoid unwanted actions such as warnings or bans. Niantic and Pokemon Go are very serious about cheating, so we recommend checking all the warnings, shadowbans, and strikes below.

There are several types of warnings and bans in Pokemon Go. There are Activity Warnings, 3rd Party Application Warnings, Softbans, Shadowbans, Temporary Bans, and Permanent Bans. Pokemon Go players can get these warnings/strikes/bans for multiple reasons, but most players are warned or banned for breaking Pokemon Go’s TOS. Some players are confused when receiving one of these warnings/bans, not knowing the reason or the cause.

Now, to make it clear, Niantic and Pokemon Go are known for banning players without a proper cause, and the last reported case is the AR scan tasks ban.

They say their system has a high level of detecting these accounts, but giving warnings or banning legit players proves their detection system is not always on point.

Here is a list of all types of bans and what’s the cause behind each action.

Pokemon Go Warnings, Strikes, and Bans Explained

New Anti-Cheat Measures

Niantic and Pokemon Go announced new anti-cheat measures. Here is the official announcement:

“We will be ramping up enforcement against these behaviors across our games, and rolling out our improved approach to anti-cheat. We are starting now by taking action against a number of accounts that we found to be in violation of our terms of service or player guidelines during recent in-game events in Pokemon GO.

This is only the first step in implementing our improved cheating behavior detection and enforcement systems. These improvements will be integrated into all Niantic games to detect and punish players on a consistent and ongoing basis, rather than in waves, as we have in the past.

Looking ahead, we’ll continue to improve our methods and processes to ensure we’re staying ahead of any new behaviors that allow players to unfairly exploit game rules.”

Activity Warning

This is usually from using an application that logs into your account such as an IV Checker. This does not affect gameplay, but if you continue to use what caused your warning you will get a shadowban.

3rd Party Application Warning

This warning pops up when the system has detected an application on your device that is not allowed (blacklisted). This does not affect gameplay and is usually caused by some Fake GPS application. Also, it doesn’t target GPS spoofers but targets accounts used by third-party apps such as IV checkers, online trackers, and bots.


GPS Spoofing, traveling and traveling too fast (while in a moving car), or sharing accounts, will get you soft banned, for up to 12 hours. There are two ways to check if you’ve been soft banned:

  • Any Pokemon will instantly flee when you try to catch it
  • Players can’t loot from PokeStops
  • The limit is 3500 Pokemon/7 days on a rolling period
  • Players can catch Raid Bosses if soft banned
  • Stored quest rewards will “flee”
  • Players can spin PokeStops
  • Players can start an encounter and then catch the Pokemon later (3-4 hours)

NOTE: There is a Daily/Weekly catch limit in Pokemon Go. The daily catch limit is 4,800 catches, and the weekly limit is 14,000 catches. This so-called “Catch Ban” doesn’t affect Shadow Pokemon. Yes, you can catch 4800 Pokemon per day using Gotcha/Go Plus and play in a bigger city for 7-8 hours straight.


Shadow Bans are where you can not see rare Pokemon. You can still hatch eggs, spin stops, and catch Pokemon. You can still battle in Raids and Gyms.

This is usually caused by using a 3rd party app like an IV Checker (IVFly, IV Go, AliG IV, Blossoms Pokemon Go Manager) that logs into your account. It can also be caused by botting – there have been some reports of this happening because of spoofing (but not entirely verified).

Temporary Ban

The reason for this ban is the same as Shadowban, but this time your account is locked for a limited time (1-2months). If you’re temporarily banned, the following message will pop up every time you’ll try to log in – “Failed to Get Game Data.”

Permanent Ban

For last, we have the permanent ban. This is where you can no longer log in. Typically it cannot retrieve data from the server. Bots cause this.

I know that most of the Pokemon Go players are already familiar with these warnings and bans, and probably some have already received at least one, but this can be very helpful for newcomers.

Pokemon Go Three-Strike Policy Against Cheating

Strike 1: Warning

Disciplinary actions: If this strike is issued, you will see a warning message within the Pokemon GO app informing you that we have detected cheating on your account.

In addition to this warning, your gameplay experience may be degraded in the following ways for the duration of the warning:

  • You may not be able to encounter rare Pokemon in the wild. These Pokemon may not appear on the map or on the Nearby Pokemon tracker
  • You may be excluded from receiving new EX Raid Passes

Duration: This strike will last for approximately 7 days. After this period, your gameplay experience will fully be restored. If you do not remedy your behavior within or after the 7-day period, you will advance to the next strike.

Strike 2: Suspension

Disciplinary actions: If your account is issued a second strike, you will temporarily lose access to your Pokemon GO account. When attempting to log into the game, you’ll be presented with a message stating that your account is suspended. You will not be able to bypass this message.

Duration: This strike will last for approximately 30 days. After that period, your account access will be restored.

Strike 3: Termination

Disciplinary actions: If you receive the first and second strikes and continue to cheat, your account will be permanently banned.

Duration: Permanent.

What can get you Banned in Pokemon Go?

So what’s cheating for Niantic? Well, here is what’s recognized by Niantic as cheating:

  • Using modified or unofficial software
  • Playing with multiple accounts (one account per player)
  • Using tools or techniques to alter or falsify your location (“spoofing”)
  • Sharing accounts
  • Intentionally exploiting a bug to gain a reward
  • Abusing refund policy and mechanism
  • Buying or selling in-game currency or items on third-party platforms
  • Buying/selling/trading accounts
  • Any other activity that violates Niantic’s Terms of Service

Pokemon Go players can also appeal their punishment/termination. Unfortunately, Niantic confirmed that very few terminations are ever overturned.

If you believe your account has been terminated in error, you may appeal the termination. We will respond to your appeal after a complete investigation of your account. Please note that due to the high level of accuracy in our detection systems, very few terminations are ever overturned.”

We don’t encourage players to cheat, or use any kind of third-party apps.

If you are a video game developer and you have a submission to make, you can mail us at

Dejan Kacurov

Hello everyone! My name is Dejan, but you can call me Mr.D. I enjoy all video games, especially Apex Legends, Pokemon Go, and Spider-Man. A husband and father of two who also goes to the gym often and does Crossfit. I got inspiration for gaming exactly 8 years ago, and I've been writing gaming news for 7 years. I hope that you will find all the answers to your questions regarding gaming on our site. Stay healthy, and love each other!


  1. Reported a spoofer over and over again infact the local community did .. he didn’t get a ban he’s still playing ..ninantic are full if it they encourage spoofing by doing so little about it

    1. I can’t stand people who go out of their way to report spoofers. Stay in your lane and enjoy the game yourself and leave others who enjoy the game however they want alone. Snitching a** p***ies. Get a life. How does it affect you? OH YEAH. It doesn’t. Get a life

      1. I mean if you are one of those p****ies who use spoofing to hog a gym then it does affect my life.

    2. I was soft banned before because I started an encounter then got on a plane and flew across the country then attempted to catch that Pokémon from earlier.

  2. This punishment system is complete bull-fu*****y and Niantic is a joke if one is to consider the decrease in one’s inclination to pursue game play on Niantic platforms.

  3. What’s the most annoying thing about Niantic, is the fact they practically make sure the only way for some people (disabled, too young/old, people who surprisingly don’t live in Tokyo, NYC or LA, ect) really play the game is spoofing, especially after they removed all the coronavirus features. Now they’re hunting those people.

  4. While it’s unfortunate that Niantic’s anti-spoofing measures sometimes flag innocent players in Pokémon Go, it’s disheartening to see the extent of their flawed system. It’s frustrating that players who have no intention of cheating or engaging in unfair practices are wrongly penalized. This not only tarnishes the gaming experience but also creates a sense of injustice among loyal players.

    The fact that Niantic’s anti-spoofing system can’t accurately distinguish between legitimate players and cheaters raises serious concerns about its effectiveness. It’s alarming to think that innocent players can be incorrectly labeled as spoofers due to technical glitches or flawed algorithms. This not only undermines the trust players have in Niantic but also leads to unnecessary frustration and disappointment.

    Furthermore, the reliance on third-party apps or services as triggers for the anti-spoofing measures seems inadequate and flawed. Legitimate players who may innocently use certain apps for other purposes can end up being flagged for behavior that resembles spoofing. This lack of precision in distinguishing between innocent players and cheaters shows a lack of attention to detail and consideration for the player community.

    In addition, the system’s tendency to flag players based on travel patterns or anomalies in gameplay is highly problematic. Many players lead busy lives with frequent travel or unconventional schedules, which should not automatically make them suspects of cheating. Niantic’s inability to differentiate between legitimate players and spoofers in such cases is a clear indication of a flawed and unreliable system.

    While Niantic has introduced an appeal process to address false flags, it shouldn’t be solely up to the players to prove their innocence. The burden of proof should lie with Niantic to ensure that their anti-spoofing system is accurate and reliable from the start. Placing the responsibility on players to navigate a complex and often frustrating appeals process only adds insult to injury.

    It’s disheartening to see the negative impact that Niantic’s flawed anti-spoofing measures have on innocent players. This situation not only dampens the enthusiasm of players who genuinely enjoy the game but also creates an atmosphere of doubt and suspicion within the Pokémon Go community. Niantic must take immediate and substantial steps to rectify these flaws and restore players’ faith in their ability to maintain a fair and enjoyable gaming environment.

    In conclusion, Niantic’s anti-spoofing measures in Pokémon Go are deeply flawed and fail to accurately differentiate between cheaters and innocent players. The system’s reliance on unreliable triggers, inability to consider legitimate player behavior, and the burden placed on players to prove their innocence all contribute to a highly disappointing experience. It’s time for Niantic to address these issues and implement a more effective and fair anti-spoofing system that respects and values their dedicated player base.

  5. So wait…if I’m RIDING in a car/bus/train, or my GPS flings me a quarter mile away and back (mobile signal is funky here due to mountains and being kind of rural), I could get softbanned or fully banned?! Way to NOT support your players, Niantic.

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