Permanent ban for The Division game cheats

Screenshot from The Division Image copyright Ubisoft
Image caption Anyone caught using cheat software will be banned permanently from The Division, said Ubisoft

Gamers caught cheating when playing Ubisoft's The Division risk being permanently banned from the game.

Ubisoft said the bans were needed as earlier action that cut people off for two weeks had not stopped cheats.

It said the bans would be imposed on people who use third-party software to shoot through walls, teleport or otherwise exploit the game.

The ban comes days after it imposed a similar policy on people caught cheating in its Rainbow Six Siege game.

In a blogpost, Ubisoft said many regular players were "frustrated" by playing against gamers who enjoyed an unfair advantage by using software to cheat.

It said it had taken action against cheats by deploying server software that watched how people played the game and which could interrogate their PCs to see if they were using specially written cheating programs.

This had led to action being taken against 30,000 accounts with 3,800 people being kicked off The Division permanently, it said.

Image copyright Blizzard
Image caption Blizzard said it had banned "thousands" from its Overwatch game for cheating

Ubisoft added that it was scrapping initial two-week bans as this had not helped to stamp out a rash of cheating.

The company had been criticised on social media for this short-term ban policy because many said it did little to properly penalise those who cheated. Few were stripped of the loot they amassed while cheating so could use it to help them in the game when the ban was lifted, said commenters on Reddit.

In its blogpost, Ubisoft said it realised the short-term bans were not "dissuasive enough" so had decided to escalate its action to permanent bans the first time it catches "noxious players willingly violating the rules".

Shorter bans and account suspensions would be imposed on players who exploited bugs in the game for advantage, it said.

By imposing the severe penalty, Ubisoft has joined the growing number of game firms that are taking a hard line with cheats.

Last month Blizzard adopted a similar policy with its Overwatch game and said it had "zero tolerance" for users of "hacks, bots, or third-party software". Thousands of people have been banned from the game as a result of this policy.

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