Blizzard Korea just banned 10,000 Overwatch accounts caught using two different exploits that have been running rampant lately. The first cheat that brought down the banhammer was aimbots — programs that automatically aim with incredible precision. The second Overwatch hack currently under fire is "nuking," an exploit similar to a distributed denial-of-service attack that overloads the opposing team's connection with traffic, according to PVP Live.
Unfortunately, these bans are likely to only be a temporary solution to the hacks and cheats plaguing the Overwatch community.
Overwatch hacks: What can be done to stop cheating?
Though cheating in Overwatch is a problem in every region, it seems to be particularly rampant in South Korea — mostly in its "PC bangs," a term that describes its public gaming cafés and literally translates to "PC rooms."
In these PC bangs, according to VentureBeat, players can pay the equivalent of $1 per hour to play Overwatch, which means if one of their accounts get banned for cheating, they can simply make a new account and start over again without having to actually buy a new copy of the game.
According to Reddit user Mehknic, you have to provide the equivalent of a Social Security number to make an Overwatch account in South Korea. In theory, this should stave off a majority of hacking, since getting caught would identify you personally. But Mehknic says players in PC bangs will use virtual private networks — VPNs — to make it look as though they're making accounts in other countries, thus circumventing this restriction. So once their accounts get banned they just make new accounts and the cycle of cheating continues.
"Creating and delivering a pleasant game environment for the majority of our rule-abiding players is of paramount importance to us," Blizzard Korea said, according to a translation from VentureBeat. "And we are committed to taking all the steps we can to stop players who create, distribute, and use these nuking programs."
So why not just make these kinds of programs illegal? They already are. In South Korea, manufacturing and distributing these aimbots and nuking tools is punishable by up to five years of jail time or $43,000 in fines, according to PVP Live.
Unfortunately, the problem of Overwatch hacks and cheats persists.
More Overwatch news and updates
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