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Old 09-07-2012, 09:38 AM   #46
spartan0078
 
 
 
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Cheaters vs. Anti-cheat is just the same as pirates vs. DRM. It's a global arms race with both sides fighting to find the best programs to use. It will always be this way. One side trumping te other until the end of time.
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Old 09-07-2012, 09:51 AM   #47
Tito Shivan
 
 
 
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Originally Posted by wildfire678 View Post
1) No it is not, Z implied 1 cheater per account.
But, it IS one cheater per account.
Whether or not it's the same person is irrelevant.

It's a Steam account that caused grievance and got banned. A Steam identity that misbehaved and got punished.

And making guesses about how many of these accounts are recurring offenders is as much futile as guessing how many of the total Steam accounts are or not owned by a single individual.

So since we cannot asses with total certainity to what or even how many Real life identity(s) do every single steam identity(s) corresponds to, arguing about those numbers is as futile as discussing the scent of the colors.
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Old 09-07-2012, 01:39 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Tito Shivan View Post
So since we cannot asses with total certainity to what or even how many Real life identity(s) do every single steam identity(s) corresponds to, arguing about those numbers is as futile as discussing the scent of the colors.
A sound argument, except steam themselves advise cheaters to create a new account, this alone (even if only 1 of that 1.5mil accounts was duplicated) implies that no 1.5m cheaters haven't been stopped.

In fact, let's go further, how many of those 1.5m accounts are unique? Accounts can have multiple VAC bans.
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Old 09-07-2012, 02:59 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by KK_reborn View Post
I'm not really sure where you are going with this.
Just pointing out that the assumptions and assertions made are wrong, and are not borne out by the evidence provided.

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Does it really matter if they created new accounts and bought new games?
Yes, it does. For starters it makes touting the number of bans meaningless; thereby rendering any arguments based around that moot; and as follow-up it calls into question the efficacy, and thus the benefit, of the anticheat system.

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Isn't 1.5 million accounts banned proof enough that it works?
No, it's not. Without a statistical breakdown of the various variables we are not aware of, there are countless ways of getting a figure of 1.5 million accounts banned and it still totally failing as an anti-cheat system. As another poster pointed out - if all of those 1.5m bans were just his alts and VAC hasn't actually caught anyone else at all, would YOU say it's working?

All we can derive from that figure is that the numbers of cheaters caught by VAC is =>1. Whether or not it is greater than one, and if so by how much, would require additional information to determine - which we've not been provided with.

We can intuit it is significantly greater than one, sure, but that doesn't mean we can intuit efficacy, etc from it.

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No, it's much worse if it is detected right away. A lot of cheats like to claim they are undetectable by VAC and that's fine, let them think that. The reason why is that it makes them feel comfortable that the cheat is working well then they get banned later on unsure what happened. If it was the other way and cheats were detected upon entering the server, they would know exactly what cheats are not working and then try to modify them so they are undetectable.
As I said previously, I am well aware of why VAC uses delayed bans, but I disagree with the way it is implemented. A cheater who is happy to create a new account and rebuy a game every month can happily cheat using *DETECTED CHEATS* and disregard the punishment.

If someone is trying to cheat at BF3 - they download a cheat that is detected, they get caught and the ban streamed, they have to buy a new copy of the game instantly and haven't got to cheat in it at all. They download another cheat and do the same with trial-and-error. They could spend $100 going through half-a-dozen cheats without ever actually getting into a match and being able to cheat at all.

Now imagine someone trying to cheat at a VAC secured game - they download a cheat that is detected, they get caught, but the ban doesn't take effect for a month. They get to ruin people's games for weeks or months, and have only spent $30 on the title. The VAC ban finally lands, and now they're in the same boat as the previously mentioned cheater, but they've had a month of fun before they're obliged to trial-and-error another cheat release, and will get another month's worth of use out of it.

If I were going to cheat, I'd find spending $30-$60 a month on rebuying games a lot more appealing than spending $100+ with no guarantee that I'll actually get to play those games at all.

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No, this is people showing that they don't understand how VAC works.
Precisely my point.

Deterrence is the art of producing in the mind of the enemy... the FEAR to attack. And so, because of the automated and irrevocable decision-making process which rules out human meddling, the Doomsday machine is terrifying and simple to understand... and completely credible and convincing.

Of course, the whole point of a Doomsday Machine is lost, if you *keep* it a *secret*! Why didn't you tell the world, EH?
- Dr Strangelove.

VAC is no deterrent if people don't "understand" that it will catch them.

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Cheat 5 times on a $20 game is $100 spent on one gaming title, not to mention the 5 accounts he lost. That sounds like a deterrent.
It isn't, that's trivial compared to the subscriptions some people pay for games; a lot more trivial than spending all of that in one go and STILL NOT GETTING TO PLAY IT because the bans are instantaneous. The APB devs posted their extrapolations of cheaters, etc and found they were spending more than $60+ a month just to cheat on that game.

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You can't get dozens of bans per user unless you are saying dozens of bans for dozens of accounts of one user.
We don't know how many accounts per user is average for cheaters; but we do know that it's greater than 1, as we all have experience of countless cheaters who have cheated on multiple accounts.

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If you don't know how often VAC bans then you can't assume to know how fast it works.
The consensus on the forums is delayed bans take between a week and a few months to come into effect. The "mod is safe to use with VAC" cut-off people here seem to use is "if you've been using it for more than 3 months without a VAC ban, the mod's not going to trigger one".

Depending on how long it takes the cheat to get detected, and when the "wave" rolls out to enforce all the flagged bans, it could be anywhere from near instantaneous to months from someone taking the cheat onto a secured server.

However, various community tests (such as the "test the Steam profile report feature" youtube experiment) have shown that it is usually more than a couple of weeks; so for a $20 game you're looking at $40 a month to cheat at it with only minor inconvenience when you have to make fresh accounts. For F2P, obviously it wouldn;t cost anything but the time to make the account.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tito Shivan View Post
But, it IS one cheater per account.
Whether or not it's the same person is irrelevant.

It's a Steam account that caused grievance and got banned. A Steam identity that misbehaved and got punished.
The punishment (spending 5 mins creating a clean account) is not a credible deterrent to having potentially a month of uninterrupted fun cheating. So no, it's not irrelevant if it's the same person.
As already stated, without knowing the total number of cheaters across all VAC secured games; and without knowing the number of cheaters that VAC has actually banned; we have no way of knowing how many people VAC has failed to punish.

I don't care how many steam "identities" have been punished; if they all belong to the same user whilst 3.5 million other users are cheating without being punished that would be a complete failure in any meaningful sense.

What I, and any other rational person, cares about is cheaters being prevented from cheating in the games we're playing in; and for the reasons outlined the figure shown on vacbanned.com doesn't tell us enough or give us context in which to make reliable deductions about how well VAC achieves this.

Last edited by Ace42: 09-07-2012 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 09-07-2012, 03:43 PM   #50
Tito Shivan
 
 
 
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Originally Posted by wildfire678 View Post
A sound argument, except steam themselves advise cheaters to create a new account, this alone (even if only 1 of that 1.5mil accounts was duplicated) implies that no 1.5m cheaters haven't been stopped.

In fact, let's go further, how many of those 1.5m accounts are unique? Accounts can hav e multiple VAC bans.
You are still mixing things. 1.5mil accounts banned are 1.5mil cheaters stopped. Period.

You insist in counting people behind those accounts, which is irrelevant. As steam doesn't work person-based, but account based.

Even if ALL accounts were owned by the same person, they STILL are 1.5mil of cheat actions catched and punished.
Again:
It does not matter PEOPLE behind the accounts, as Steam is not based in PEOPLE, but in ACCOUNTS.
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Old 09-07-2012, 03:48 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by Ace42 View Post
I don't care how many steam "identities" have been punished; if they all belong to the same user whilst 3.5 million other users are cheating without being punished that would be a complete failure in any meaningful sense.
Speculation without any solid base. If you happen to have the data supporting those levels of undetected cheating i'd be more than happy in taking a look at them.
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Old 09-08-2012, 05:06 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by Tito Shivan View Post
Speculation without any solid base.
It IS speculation without any solid base - just like ANY OTHER CONCLUSION YOU TRY TO DRAW FROM THAT FIGURE.

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If you happen to have the data supporting those levels of undetected cheating i'd be more than happy in taking a look at them.
Likewise, until then perhaps everyone else in this thread can refrain from pretending the VACbanned.com statistics mean anything (good or bad) other than 1.5m accounts are known to have been banned.

Quote:
You insist in counting people behind those accounts, which is irrelevant. As steam doesn't work person-based, but account based.

Even if ALL accounts were owned by the same person, they STILL are 1.5mil of cheat actions catched and punished.
Again:
It does not matter PEOPLE behind the accounts, as Steam is not based in PEOPLE, but in ACCOUNTS.
Wrong, plain and simple. Accounts don't matter. As I said, for all we known those accounts could represent just 1 cheater being caught 1.5m times. If it's "accounts" that matter, then it's perfectly fine that VAC can only ever catch one individual and no-one else.

What matters is the detrimental effect cheaters have on our enjoyment. 'Number of accounts banned' doesn't necessarily have any bearing on this value whatsoever, for the reasons outlined repeatedly.

To judge the efficacy of the anti-cheat we need to know both how effective the punishment is; and what percentage of people are getting punished. "Number of accounts banned" tells us nothing about either of these things.

Not sure how you can be failing to get this when it has been reiterated countless times with illustrative examples demonstrating the point.

Last edited by Ace42: 09-08-2012 at 05:13 AM.
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Old 09-08-2012, 06:17 AM   #53
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@Ace:

You still don't seem to understand that developing an anti-cheat for someone who will continually cheat, no matter how much money it cost them, is impossible. If you make the bans instant, then it just costs the cheat dev more (at the start, at least) to create an undetectable cheat. Dedicated cheaters pays a little bit more for the cheat, but knows for sure that he won't be banned for a while.

VAC works well because it prevents people cheating who want to cheat because they are bored or frustrated but don't want to be banned. They can't risk using any cheat though, because they can't know if they'll be detected and banned after they've gone on their mini-rampage. With an insta-ban system, these people know that a certain cheat will be safe for a while.

Basically, you'll never stop those sad people who cheat over and over again (if they even exist), but you do stop thousands of raging kids having a worry-free cheat session every once in a while.
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:01 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by NabsterHax View Post
You still don't seem to understand that developing an anti-cheat for someone who will continually cheat, no matter how much money it cost them, is impossible.
You are mistaken, I am well aware of this. The point is that having to potentially pay hundreds of dollars up front to cheat with no guarantee the next cheat you try will work is more of a deterrent to a potential cheater than $40 a month that guarantees you the ability to cheat even with detected hacks.

Quote:
VAC works well because it prevents people cheating who want to cheat because they are bored or frustrated but don't want to be banned. They can't risk using any cheat though, because they can't know if they'll be detected and banned after they've gone on their mini-rampage. With an insta-ban system, these people know that a certain cheat will be safe for a while.
Completely wrong:
Mr Cheat downloads a hack for BF3 - one of three things can happen; either it is detected and he instantly gets his account banned when he tries it online; it is undetected but he gets banned days or weeks later when it is detected; it is undetected and stays undetected so he doesn't get banned.

Mr Cheat downloads a hack for Black Ops - one of three things can happen; either it is detected, but he doesn't get banned for days or weeks until the ban lands; it is undetected, but it gets detected days or weeks later, and then days or weeks later than THAT he is banned; or it is undetected and stays undetected so he doesn't get banned.

In the former situation he spends less time cheating, or else has to spend more money to cheat via trial and error.

Quote:
Basically, you'll never stop those sad people who cheat over and over again (if they even exist), but you do stop thousands of raging kids having a worry-free cheat session every once in a while.
You don't stop any additional people. The worry is the same whether you're worried about your PB-undetected cheat getting discovered or whether you're worried about VAC discovering or having discovered your cheat. The difference is that with VAC you know that you're given free bonus time to enjoy the cheat before the ban lands.

And for people to be worried about VAC in the way you describe they have to know how it works - they don't know how it works as a previous poster arguing your case has tried to establish - and they have to fear that it works well. They don't fear that it works well because they don't and can't see evidence of it working well.
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:16 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ace42 View Post
*snip*
You missed a very important part of NabsterHax's post (and also a very important part of VAC): a delayed ban means that it is very difficult to figure out which cheats are currently detectable. By the time the cheat community knows that VAC can detect it it is already too late, the bans are on their way.
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:42 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by crazymfer View Post
Is it really hard to make a game that people cant cheat in ? what does that say for the game developers ? are they really that unskilled ?
You go make an Uncrackable Security system. THEN you have the right to complain
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Old 09-08-2012, 07:57 AM   #57
Tito Shivan
 
 
 
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Originally Posted by Ace42 View Post
It IS speculation without any solid base - just like ANY OTHER CONCLUSION YOU TRY TO DRAW FROM THAT FIGURE.
I do not draw conclussions. I read the data.
1.5mil accounts banned are 1.5mil times an account has been punished by cheating. Plain and simple

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ace42 View Post
Wrong, plain and simple. Accounts don't matter. As I said, for all we known those accounts could represent just 1 cheater being caught 1.5m times. If it's "accounts" that matter, then it's perfectly fine that VAC can only ever catch one individual and no-one else.
Accounts DO matter.
What do you create to play & buy on steam?
-An Account.
What does the SSA acceptance apply to?
-An account.
What are all your purchases tied to?
-An Account.
What are your Gaming stats, comments, reccomendations and screenshots tied to?
-An Account.
What are VAC bans applied to?
-An Account.
What does Valve Lock if you do a chargeback?
-An Account.
What are Trading bans applied to?
-An Account.

I'll repeat it again:
"You cannot certify WHO is behind an account at any given time"
Ergo:
"You CANNOT apply ANY measure/punishment to an individual YOU DON'T KNOW WHO HE IS"
(AKA 'You cannot punish someone you don't know')

That's Why VAC bans ACCOUNTS.
That's why VAC DOESN'T ban PEOPLE.
That's why the number of ACCOUNTS banned MATTER.
That's why wondering about the people behind those accounts is IRRELEVANT.

I really don't know how to make it clearer. So i'll stop going in circles discussing this.
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Old 09-08-2012, 08:02 AM   #58
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Originally Posted by Ace42 View Post
Completely wrong:
Mr Cheat downloads a hack for BF3 - one of three things can happen; either it is detected and he instantly gets his account banned when he tries it online; it is undetected but he gets banned days or weeks later when it is detected; it is undetected and stays undetected so he doesn't get banned.

Mr Cheat downloads a hack for Black Ops - one of three things can happen; either it is detected, but he doesn't get banned for days or weeks until the ban lands; it is undetected, but it gets detected days or weeks later, and then days or weeks later than THAT he is banned; or it is undetected and stays undetected so he doesn't get banned.
You also seem to forget that in both cases Mr Cheat can be kicked and /or banned from any game by an admin/votekick Whether or not the cheat is detected.
That's why server admins and server administration tools are SO important. Because they don't rely on any mechanism to kick an undesirable player out of a game in an instant, no matter how advanced his cheat is.
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Old 09-08-2012, 03:24 PM   #59
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The point of anti-cheat programs is mainly to ASSIST server admins in dealing with cheaters. As well as to serve as a deterrent and a form of punishment for cheaters.


Course if there are no server admins then the effectiveness of any anti-cheat program drops by a fair margin.
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Old 09-10-2012, 12:44 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Ace42 View Post
All we can derive from that figure is that the numbers of cheaters caught by VAC is =>1. Whether or not it is greater than one, and if so by how much, would require additional information to determine - which we've not been provided with.
Granted the stats are not perfect but to say the numbers of cheaters caught by VAC is =>1 is absurd. It's more accurate to say that the numbers of cheaters caught by VAC is <= 1.5 million. We can't say >=1 because it's impossible for 1 person to have 1.5 million accounts unless we are talking CEO of Microsoft or Apple with significant cash to spend on trolling.

Quote:
As I said previously, I am well aware of why VAC uses delayed bans, but I disagree with the way it is implemented. A cheater who is happy to create a new account and rebuy a game every month can happily cheat using *DETECTED CHEATS* and disregard the punishment.
They are not disregarding the punishment, just waiting for it to happen. It's like a criminal robbing gas stations. He may get away with it for awhile but then they figure out it's him and arrest him. He gets out, does it again, gets arrested, back in jail, rinse, repeat (as necessary).

I see what you are getting. And really what other choice is there? VAC bans banning IP addresses? What if me moves to a new computer? or a new city? What then? What exactly do you propose?

Really there's not much you can do because as long as there are people willing to create the cheats, they will always be around. You can take down the website but then they'll just put up another one. It's a never ending cycle.
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