Valve has banned more than 40,000 accounts in Dota 2 that were found to be cheating by releasing a patch that hid specific bits of data only cheaters could read.
Earlier this week, Valve released a blog post that was quite bluntly called, “Cheaters Will Never Be Welcome In Dota,” in which detailed recent steps it took to ban 40,000+ accounts that had been cheating in the game. The accounts that had been cheating were using third-party software that let them “access information used internally by the Dota client that wasn’t visible during normal gameplay, giving the cheater an unfair advantage.”
Once Valve understood the specific way that players were cheating, it released a pitch which “created a honeypot: a section of data inside the game client that would never be read during normal gameplay, but that could be read by these exploits.” All of the accounts that had been banned at the time the blog was released had read from this “secret” area in the client, so Valve was very confident each ban was deserved.
Valve noted in the post that typically bans take place behind the scenes and aren’t particularly noteworthy, though it wanted to use the large number to illustrate a point: “If you are running any application that reads data from the Dota client as you’re playing games, your account can be permanently banned from playing Dota. This includes professional players, who will be banned from all Valve competitive events.”
While Valve expects some players to continue developing and using new exploits, “we will continue to detect and remove these exploits as they come, and continue to ban users who cheat.”