Valve Issues 40,000 VAC Bans Since Summer Sale ended!

/ 3 years ago


Gabe Newell has been busy. Since the Steam summer sale ended, he hasn’t been spending all of his time rolling in his money. Admittedly, probably a good portion of it, but not all. How do we know? Well, Valve has issued 40,000 VAC bans to filthy cheaters!

What is a VAC ban?

Valve has its own inbuilt anti-cheating system called VAC. This is an acronym for Valve-Anti-Cheat. Now, we should be clear, VAC is not the most efficient cheat detection software, in fact, it doesn’t work like many of the better-known ones, at all. It does, however, work in a much more devious way.


VAC, generally speaking, does not immediately ban you. VAC bans are a slower, more subtle process. Any game or program which implements the VAC system (any game by Valve) reports to VAC any suspicious activity. This can include 3rd party programs or simply just accumulated player reports via the Steam service. VAC doesn’t act immediately, but when it does, it’s like a sledgehammer.

I’ve been VAC banned! What should I do?

Stop cheating!

In truth, the VAC ban system does tend to work exceptionally well. It is not as direct as Punkbuster which often just point-blank refuses to open a game if there are any suspicious programs running. VAC prefers to go under the radar and this isn’t perfect.

For example, Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 ran exclusively on the VAC engine. This was a total disaster for PC users with cheaters everywhere. The problem was that VAC is a slow process, therefore a cheater can easily get away with it for weeks, maybe months, before being shut-down. Modern Warfare 2 was practically ruined online, it was a terrible choice of anti-cheat engine and since this time, it’s never, to my knowledge, been used so exclusively on a major title.

cheating VAC

Why so many bans in a short period?

Generally, Valve will issue a VAC ban in batches. It generally tends to wait 2-3 months, then it slaps them out in the thousands. According to PCGamesN however, this recently banning of 40,000 is more than double the previous record of just over 15,000.

Gabe means business with this ban so that’s good. On the downside, Half Life 3 is still not confirmed.



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