Valve's Anti-Cheat Measures in Dota 2 Lead to 40,000 Account Bans

Russell Kidson
Feb 23, 2023
Updated • Feb 23, 2023
Games, Security

Valve's Anti-Cheat Measures in Dota 2 Lead to 40,000 Account Bans

Valve, the developer of the popular online game Dota 2, has permanently banned over 40,000 accounts in recent weeks for using third-party software to cheat the game. Valve announced in a blog post on Tuesday that it had identified and patched a known issue used by cheating software to exploit the game, and subsequently set a honeypot trap to catch players using the exploit.

Valve's Anti-Cheat Measures in Dota 2 Lead to 40,000 Account Bans

The third-party software enabled its users to access information used internally by the Dota client that is not visible during gameplay, providing them with an unfair advantage. After investigating the issue, Valve took action to remove 'bad actors' from the active playerbase of Dota. This effort is a crucial step in maintaining the integrity of the game and ensuring fair competition among players.

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According to Valve, the developer of Dota 2, the team quickly released a patch to counter the cheating method used by players. The patch included a honeypot - a section of data in the game client that was not accessible during normal gameplay, but could be accessed by the cheating software.

Valve revealed that all of the 40,000 banned accounts had accessed this hidden section of data, indicating their engagement in cheating. Valve stated that it has 'extremely high confidence that every ban was well-deserved,' and that the company is committed to maintaining a fair and enjoyable gameplay environment for all users. By leveraging anti-cheat measures like honeypot traps, Valve is working to ensure that the game remains a level playing field for everyone.

Valve emphasized that the recent action to ban over 40,000 accounts is a significant milestone in its ongoing campaign against cheaters and cheat developers in Dota 2. The company noted that this particular family of cheating clients is highly prevalent, making the number of banned accounts especially noteworthy.

Valve also made clear that it is committed to maintaining a fair and competitive gaming environment for all players, and that cheating will not be tolerated. 'If you are running any application that reads data from the Dota client while playing games, your account can be permanently banned from playing Dota,' warned Valve. By taking visible actions against cheaters and their supporters, Valve is working to deter future cheating and ensure the integrity of the game.

Valve is not alone in its efforts to combat cheating within the gaming community. This week, Ubisoft announced that it has developed a system to disrupt players who use XIM devices to cheat, while Destiny 2 developer Bungie recently won a $4 million lawsuit against cheat maker AimJunkies for copyright violation.

In addition, Riot Games warned League of Legends and Teamfight Tactics players earlier this year about potential new cheats that could arise after the theft of source code for both games and the legacy anti-cheating software they employ in a data breach. These measures taken by major game developers demonstrate their commitment to ensuring fair gameplay and a level playing field for all users. By actively combating cheating and cheating tools, they are working to foster a more enjoyable and rewarding gaming experience for their communities.

Valve Bans 40,000 Accounts in Honeypot Trap to Combat Cheating in Dota 2


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  1. Tachy said on February 24, 2023 at 2:45 am

    @ Yanta, I disagree.

    People who belive cheating in online gaming is acceptable will apply these beliefs to real life as well. It’s much more than just cheating at a game, it’s a moral trait being expressed and/or learned.

    I don’t think the companies are going far enough but, at the same time they are hippocrites.

    All the “game booster” elements so many of them build into thier games these days just teach that cheating is ok if your rich enough.

    With the line between real and virtual growing ever thinner, people should be expected to act morally and, be held accountable for thier actions, in both worlds.

    Disclaimer: I quit playing online games because of the cheating and growing toxicity.

  2. yanta said on February 23, 2023 at 11:55 pm

    No Anti-cheat measures come without bugs. How many of those 40K accounts were unfairly or incorrectly permanently banned? 50%? 75%?

    Is using a VPN considered cheating? I continually got suspended from because I use a VPN, used the same server every day, which was in my local area on the same network, no proxy, no anonymizer and not blacklisted. They kept suspending my account until I stopped playing blizzard games.

    Companies these days go too far. Gaming is supposed to be fun. If it is telemetry and collection of personal information, it’s 2FA, MFA and other hyped ineffective rubbish, or so many restrictions and penalties for any one who tries to play free-2-play games for free. It’s just not worth it.

    I’ll stick to solitaire now at least that doesn’t ge me banned from anything.

    1. cringe said on February 24, 2023 at 10:54 am

      Innocent? About none, the people banned used ESP hooks that allowed them to see enemy movements in real time on their screens.

  3. oy vey said on February 23, 2023 at 8:22 pm

    now when will these useless * do something about the massive cheating problem in cs:go? you know the game that is the most played title in entire steam? shaking my head…

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