Valve has issued a stark warning to Dota 2 cheaters, while confirming it has permanently banned over 40,000 accounts using a "honeypot" tactic.
In a blog post published last night, Valve said it had banned accounts it found were using third-party software to cheat in its hugely popular MOBA over the last few weeks.
According to Valve, this software accessed information used internally by the Dota client that wasn't visible during normal gameplay, giving cheaters an unfair advantage.
The company said it has now fixed the underlying issues that enabled these cheats, and removed "bad actors" from the active Dota playerbase.
Valve detected these cheaters by creating a "honeypot", or "a section of data inside the game client that would never be read during normal gameplay, but that could be read by these exploits".
"Each of the accounts banned today read from this 'secret' area in the client, giving us extremely high confidence that every ban was well-deserved," Valve explained.
Valve said it decided to make this "particularly large" ban wave public to "make our position clear":
"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."
If you're wondering how Dota 2 players cheat in-game, some enable the removal of the fog of war, auto last hits, auto aim for abilities and automatic use of dodge, among others.