Massive Apex Legends hack explained: ALGS impact, culprit, more

Jeremy Gan
ALGS Championship featured many a good roster

A massive hack in the middle of an ALGS match has thrown the Apex Legends community for a loop, so here is an explainer of what went down. 

The Apex Legends community was rocked by a massive hack that went down on March 17 after several ALGS players were given cheats against their will in the middle of the NA Pro League Split Finals

The last day of the tournament was meant to determine the 12 teams from NA that would be going to ALGS’ Split 1 Playoffs to represent the region in May. However, that has all been postponed after the security breaches. 

With two players from major teams getting hacked while live on stream, a hacker that has stamped the hack with their name, and an unknown date as for when the NA Pro League Split will conclude, there’s a great deal to unravel. 


Who were the ALGS players hacked? 

Both TSM’s Phillip “ImperialHal” Dosen and DarkZero’s Noyan “Genburten” Ozkose were the targets of the hacks. 

ImperialHal is arguably the face of Apex Legends, and Genburten is part of the championship-winning DarkZero squad with Zer0 and multiple Split Playoffs trophies on his belt. 

Both players were hacked in Game Four. The first was Genburten in the middle of the round when he suddenly found himself with the ability to see through walls. 

A UI interface called “TSM HALAL HOOK” appeared on Genburten’s screen, which purportedly also gave him an aimbot. Despite his IGL Zer0 asking him if he could still play, Genburten put up his hands at his inability to control it and subsequently exited the server while the rest were fighting. 

After the game had been reset, it was ImperialHal who would be affected next. Hal noticed he had been given aim hacks as TSM were about to engage in a fight, as he found his aim suspiciously snappy. 

A slowed-down analysis of the footage will see that when Hal shot a few bullets at his intended target, several other bullets also hit another player in his line of sight. 

Despite Hal’s teammates telling him to exit the server, Hal attempted to play on despite the hacks, choosing not to shoot at players instead. However, the lobby was quickly shut down by the admins. 

After the incident went down and the Finals were postponed, ImperialHal and teammate Verhulst were given bans on their accounts after trying to queue a game of ranked. 

Should you uninstall Apex Legends after March 17 hack? 

Following the hacks, there were frantic discussions on whether pros and the general player base were safe from the hacks as seeing a pro lobby be breached to this extent is unheard of. 

There are theories as to how the hacker, Destroyer2009, breached into the game. According to Twitter user Anti-cheat Police Department, they claimed to have messaged the hacker themselves who then alleged they were using an RCE exploit.

Essentially, it’s a supposed breach into Easy Anti-Cheat, an anti-cheat software used by dozens of games from Apex Legends to Fortnite. 

However, EAC denied that the fault does not lie in their anti-cheat, with Epic Games’ studios also confirming as such. Destroyer2009 did not reveal how he pulled off the hacks.

Days following the hacks on March 20, Respawn addressed the players’ security concerns and announced a rollout of a suite of new security measures.

Yes, it is safe to play Apex Legends now.

Who is Apex Legends hacker Destroyer2009?

When Genburten was hacked, his account automatically messaged the lobby, “Apex hacking global series by Destroyer2009 & R4ndom.” 

It’s unknown who R4ndom is, however, Destroyer2009 has become one of the most infamous hackers in Apex Legends in recent months. 

He recently made headlines for targeting players like ImperialHal, HisWattson, and streamer Mande with an army of bots in their ranked games. One of the more confusing and potentially nefarious acts Destroyer2009 has done is gift Mande 4000 packs for free. 

In a interview with TechCrunch, Destroyer2009 revealed that he was in part doing it “just for fun” but also with the goal of forcing Apex Legends’ devs to fix the vulnerability he exploited.

When will ALGS NA Finals resume? 

Roughly 15 minutes after the ALGS admins shut down the server, it was announced on the Apex Legends Esports Twitter account and live on broadcast that the Finals would be postponed. 

“Due to the competitive integrity of this series being compromised, we have made the decision to postpone the NA finals at this time. We will share more information soon.” 

The ALGS NA Regional Final would go on to be completed on March 25, however, in total secret. The final day of the competition was not broadcast live, with viewers only finding out the final results at the end of the day through players’ tweets.

A pre-recording of the Final day was broadcast live the next day for viewers to see how the Finals played out.

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