It's interesting reading material imo for anyone arguing back and forth on whether the game industry is lobbying towards more laws and ways for companies to deal with cheaters, as example by going after the people making money off cheats, by claiming damages to their brand and thus income that the cheaters cause.
I marked a few things imo worth noticing if you're G1 (price on anticheat BE relates to number of players.. explains why some very small games can afford BE also... though no idea if G1 is even interested in the PC part of APB anymore or can afford 10k$ when considering how far they've let the PC situation slip)
I'll paste the article here, but if you want the source its an article from the wall street journal by Sarah E. Needleman. (not sure if its okay to link offsite)
ps. the last part i formatted in red... i think that includes also russian hackers stealing your acct
As E-Sports Grows, Videogame Companies Battle Cheaters
Videogame companies pushing online competitions are grappling with the digital equivalent of performance-enhancing drugs.
Players looking for an edge are using unapproved software and exploiting bugs to make their weapons fire with perfect aim, among other advantages, derailing honest gamers vying for prominence, social-media fame and, in some cases, prize money.
The cheating pushes conscientious players to quit, which can hurt sales and discourage people from embracing e-sports just as it begins to win mainstream acceptance.
To fight back, companies are banning players by the tens of thousands, hiring spies to uncover illicit code and spending more on software designed to prevent or identify cheating.
Activision Blizzard Inc., e-sports contest organizer ESL and other companies say they spend hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on such software, and more for personnel to investigate complaints. Those costs are expected to rise, they say.
"It's an arms race," said Jeff Kaplan, director of the team-based shooter game "Overwatch," around which Activision Blizzard is building a pro league. The game's development team last month hired its first full-time engineer solely to combat cheating.
Panopticon Laboratories LLC, a cybersecurity company, estimates players world-wide spend between $350 million and $500 million a year on cheat software, which is widely available for purchase online.
Using the software isn't illegal, though such behavior often violates a game's terms of service, said Ryan Morrison, an attorney in New York. While cheating has been rare among the professional ranks of computer gamers, some of whom compete for million-dollar pots, it has been more common at the amateur level, where aspiring e-sports athletes vie from home for recognition and small prize pools, according to Marcel Menge, managing director at ESL.
Players tend to feel anonymous at home, Mr. Kaplan said. When cheating becomes rampant, "the perception of a game and community around it can deteriorate very quickly," he said.
Widespread cheating at the casual or amateur level could dampen the likelihood that players will aspire to go pro and hurt the perception of the e-sports industry overall, said Mike Hickey, an analyst at investment bank Benchmark Co. If it gets out of control, "people will lose interest in e-sports and that will feed up the chain."
A week after releasing "Overwatch" in May, Activision Blizzard discovered thousands of players using cheat programs to help their characters see through walls and fire weapons that never miss. Others exploited a bug to repeatedly hide in unsanctioned areas, which Activision Blizzard considers cheating. The company said it banned the offenders.
"People who are very smart come up with sophisticated ways to get around the prevention methods," Mr. Kaplan said.
Other examples of videogame cheating include tweaks that allow players to dodge enemy attacks in ways not permitted and the use of bots to help players compile resources such as virtual gold so they can quickly advance in the game's environment.
Fernando Dominguez quit playing "Tom Clancy's The Division" two months after buying it. The 35-year-old Miami resident, who says he spends about $100 a year on extra content for games he likes, grew tired of players taking advantage of a loophole to make their characters invisible.
"They were literally like ghosts," Mr. Dominguez said.
Ubisoft Entertainment SA, which publishes "The Division," said it fixed the bug and has banned more than 40,000 players for different kinds of cheating over the course of nearly a year.
In a January survey, 16% of respondents said they cheated in a videogame, according to Nielsen, which polled 939 U.S. console and computer gamers ages 13 and older. Just more than a third said they stopped playing a game because of cheating; 38% said it has gotten worse in the past year.
Some companies buy services designed to block the cheat software. BattlEye Innovations e.K. of Germany charges on average between $10,000 and $100,000 a year for its technology, depending on a game's number of players.
Companies also take legal action. Tencent Holdings Ltd.'s Riot Games in August sued the makers of LeagueSharp a $15 monthly service based in Peru that provided hacks to subscribers for cheating in its e-sports game "League of Legends," causing irreparable harm to the player community, according to the complaint.
Earlier this month, a court forced LeagueSharp to shut down and awarded Riot $10 million.
"Cheating sucks," a Riot spokesman said. "Riot is absolutely committed to upholding the competitive integrity of our game."
The makers of LeagueSharp didn't respond to requests for comment.
ESL, which organizes more than 10,000 competitions annually, pays freelance spies between $25 and $40 an hour to secure cheat software it can study. Cheaters are banned for six months before they can petition to return.
Activision Blizzard routinely bans players who claim someone else used their credentials to cheat, Mr. Kaplan said. "There are a lot of little brothers and roommates cheating in the world," he said.
Edited by Tigrix, 21 April 2017 - 06:47 AM.