Random GTA Online PC Players Are Getting Banned, What’s Going On?
Update 03/28/2018: Rockstar Games appears to have started to revert bans applied to affected accounts. Please see our newer article on this topic.
By now, most of you will be aware of the random bans players have been receiving in Grand Theft Auto Online on PC. These random bans aren’t just affecting a limited number of players either, so far the bans appear to have affected thousands.
The 30-day in-game ban resets players’ rank and (in-game) bank account balance. It has affected players regardless of time playing the game, some even purchased Grand Theft Auto V only to be banned the same day due to this issue.
We reported on these bans last week when the problem started, but it seems that Rockstar Games has stayed silent and done little to address the issue. This has resulted in players now taking to Steam, posting negative reviews in hopes to get the attention of Rockstar and compel them to acknowledge the mysterious bans.
It has been theorized that the GTA Online anti-cheat system experienced some sort of a failure when the tunables were updated to fix an exploit. The system appears to be inappropriately targeting users who have installed modding tools for their single-player game – something which Rockstar allows, though does not officially support.
When this issue initially started occurring, we advised people to contact Rockstar Support in an effort to get this solved. This appears to have been to no avail, with Rockstar Support automatically closing support tickets related to this issue, without so much as a review. However, it is important to keep in mind that Rockstar Support is not “in-house,” rather, it is outsourced to a separate corporate contractor as a cost-cutting measure. Since the team is outsourced, they have little power or authority to actually unban accounts, meaning that it is easier to automatically close discussions related to bans. This is not something unheard of for corporations to do but does not excuse the non-response.
Rockstar Support used to have a support phone number available, however, after a trend in previous years of GTA YouTubers prank calling the company, the phone service was discontinued. Calls to the former number now are redirected to an automated answering service.
What to do
With the lack of communication from Rockstar support, all that can be done is to wait and hope that this is resolved in a timely manner. We are sure that they are aware of the issue due to the press coverage that it has received and (hopefully) are working on a solution to it at this time. For now, the best that players can do is to keep attempting to get their attention regarding this issue by reaching out via their various social media channels.
We will be sure to keep everyone informed on this matter as we wish to see it resolved and bring it to Rockstar Games’ attention. Our first article about this ban wave was the most viewed article on the site, so it is definitely an issue that players are concerned about. We’ll keep you posted.