Grand Theft Auto V hack exposed single-player games to malicious trolls

Over the years, we’ve written a lot about the apparently easy-to-hack and Rockstar’s many, many, many attempts to prevent cheaters from ruining the online experience for legitimate players. Last week, though, players reported that trolls were briefly able to mess with the portion of through an exploit targeting players’ Rockstar Social Club accounts.

You can see an example of the single-player hacking in action in this Twitch clip, where a troll follows user SnowieLive after kicking him from an online session and continually kills his avatar in the single-player mode. “You’re not safe in single player,” the hacker says in a somewhat on-the-nose message in the clip. Similar clips from speedrunner FriendlyBaron show hackers loading jets into his path and simply killing his character in mid-drive during a run.

Players that track the state of cheating tools in the universe noted last week that one popular “mod menu” was advertising the newfound ability to discover an online player’s Rockstar ID, a hidden string of numbers associated with their Rockstar Social Club account. With that number, hackers using that tool could take control of an online user’s single-player games, with new abilities including “Rockstar admin kick, Network kick, Ragdoll, Fake money correction, Kill, Spawn vehicle, and send crew message.”

Some players suggest the new hacking method was related to Rockstar’s release of Title Update 1.45 last week. Others say this kind of exploit has been floating around “fore years [sic]” but only found its way to public PC mod menus last week.

In any case, though Rockstar hasn’t posted an official notice (or responded to a request for comment from Ars Technica), players report the ability to hack single-players games was quietly patched over the weekend. But the fact that single-player content was even temporarily attackable just highlights how shoddy ‘s simple peer-to-peer mesh networking can be, and how vulnerable one of the world’s most popular games remains years after its release.

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