Valve anti-cheat system: another case of mistreatment?

4 replies [Last post]
Joined: 06/29/2013

Greetings ladies and gentlemen:

I casually run across this:

Am I the only one that finds this spying software horrible and that the countermeasures excessive and over the top?

I don't play Valve's games but I know people who do that and the countermeasures are excessive: it is just a game and Valve can cancel an account where you just put money in automatically and there are cases where that software did not work right and people lost their money without justification.

Your thoughts?

Joined: 05/30/2012

The method of using spyware is bad, but prohibiting someone from doing something on your server is not.

One thing it certainly is: misguided. The proper way to prevent cheating is to have server-side anti-cheat code (things like checking for inconsistency).

Joined: 06/29/2013

Good point, I didn't think about it: server-side.

Yes using spyware on someone machine is bad but checking things server-side seems like a good way of handling that specific problem.

Really, onpon4, good answer :-)

Joined: 03/08/2014

For what it's worth:

  • Some other games use PunkBuster (required or optional per-server, depending on games), which is infamous in gaming communities for doing this like being able to make a screenshot of the client and send it to the server administrator, without the user knowing.
  • The Valve Anti-Cheat has been known a few years ago for checking the user's browsing history to see if they did not browse any cheating sites.

It's one more reason not to play proprietary games, and to switch to free gaming entirely. No client-side anti-cheat is good or even useful, only server-side checks and regular server administrators/moderators can help fight cheating in online games.

However, some supposedly free games require players to use proprietary anti-cheat clients in order to take part in competitive gameplay. This is the case in games like Sauerbraten or Quake 2 (

Joined: 01/09/2013


They are one of the many reasons, that I would stay away from Valve and many other game hosting websites that the main goal is just money.