If you happen to read news on the internet, you might have come across multiple stories alleging that Valve was spying on users’ internet histories. The allegation stemmed from a post on reddit which claimed that Valve Anti-Cheat was pulling DNS data from users’ computers and sending it to Valve, thus allowing the company to essentially monitor their entire internet history without them even knowing. Valve co-founder Gabe Newell has personally spoken against the accusation, outright denying any possibility of Valve spying on its users.
Valve Anti-Cheat is a software used to curtail the use of hacks and cheats in games available on Steam. The software is used by a lot of Steam users who want an unadulterated gaming experience, so its not surprising that most of them would have been very worried about the possibility of Valve keeping an eye on their browsing habits. Newell normally doesn’t speak out against such allegations, but this time around he has, laying down his case in three simple questions. “Do we care what porn sites you visit? Oh, dear god, no. My brain just melted,” writes Newell. To properly address these concerns, the co-founder also described in detail VAC’s use of DNA data on reddit. Basically its to mark cheat developers who create DRM and anti-cheat code for their cheats from charging users, the DNS data is used to identify and mark them for a future ban.