Valve has VAC banned over 90,000 Steam accounts in a recent VAC wave over the last several days.
VAC, or Valve Anti-Cheat, is the company's own anti-cheat service that is used in many of their own games (as well as just a few third-party titles) so that everyone can have a fun time free of any foul play. Every now and again, Valve kicks off a wave of bans that clean up thousands of accounts in a burst. This time around, they've nailed over 60,000 cheaters.
The recent spike in bans was beautifully recorded by SteamDB, showing an obvious spike on their graph that records banned accounts.
Generally, VAC bans aren't overturned and players on those accounts lose a number of important privileges. VAC-banned accounts can't play on VAC-secured servers, nor will they be able to send the game(s) they've been banned from as a gift to another account. Players are restricted from uploading content of certain types to the Steam Community for the games they've been banned from and they can't vote on any Steam Workshop content for that game or any free-to-play games. Players hit with the banhammer could still purchase games on their account if they wish to, however.
Perhaps the most devastating loss is the inability to trade items. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive is one of many games protected by Valve's anti-cheat system where especially-rare items can be worth hundreds or thousands of dollars. The /r/VAC_Porn subreddit [SFW] has some interesting highlights from the last few days including an account that now has as much a $30,000 worth of CS:GO items that the affected player will never be able to unload.
Valve will continue to ban troublesome accounts and maintain a zero-tolerance policy on cheating. If you have anything of value on your account, it's perhaps best not to cheat at all if you'd like to retain your investment.
How well do you think Valve combats cheaters on Steam? Has the recent ban wave had a noticeable impact in the games you play? Let us know in the comments below!