Possible way to hinder ratting bots

First a caveat…I am not a programmer, botter, or even that savvy about how someone goes about setting up a bot. I am certain that people a lot smarter than I have given the problem some thought. However, I would like to just throw an idea out there and see if others can point out why it likely wouldn’t work to obstruct bot ratters. If I understand correctly, the primary defensive strategy for ratting bots in Null is to detect when a neutral enters local and then immediately warp to a structure and dock, tether, or whatever. The bot then waits a set amount of time, checks local and if local is clear of neutrals recommences botting. Rinse and repeat. What if CCP, in what I would think they are capable of, created “phantom” neutrals in local at random times with randomized pilot names. If these pilot names were “printed” in black or a “null” color they couldn’t be seen in the actual Local pane, but would be there to trigger the bot defense. A real pilot would never see them in Local. The phantom names could default to the bottom of the local list so as not to create visible name gaps in the Local pane. The names would not to correspond to actual pilot names. Their “appearance” in Local could be randomized in terms of number of phantoms and length of time in system, . Could a bot cross reference these phantom names with Zkill…I don’t know but that would take time I presume. What do you all think?

To my knowledge, most bots work by reading the screen for text via Optical Character Recognition (OCR). If a human cant see it, the bot can be programmed to not see it either.

Well I’ll be darned. I thought bots were somehow reading the digital info and not actually digitally translating the optical image. Sophisticated I have to admit.

Ignoring the issue already mentioned you also need ccp to want to get rid of bots before any idea can be implemented.

Anyone who’s activity hunted and reported obvious bots can tell you just how “proactive” ccp is about actually removing them.

As seen with black out they make up a good chunk of revenue for ccp so unless they can be proven to be connected with rmt ccp only gets rid of enough to make it look like they remove them.

It would be more effort to unpack the games data packet than simply just reading the screen.*

Pretty much anything you could do to trick a bot would result in the game doing things that are SUPER annoying for a player. They’d all require pop up messages, or elements of the UI to move around.

There’s only way I can think of. That would be movement of the mouse greater than 1 pixel per frame (ish). Or perfectly linear movements of the mouse at high speed.

*There are exceptions, there’s certain things not in screen that would indeed be useful though.

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