Game maker using courts to stop online game cheaters


Associated Press

RALEIGH, N.C.

The maker of a video game that pits players worldwide in a fight for survival on virtual terrain has used U.S. courts to successfully chasten cheaters from Ukraine to Minnesota.

North Carolina-based Epic Games has in the past two months squeezed promises from men in Minnesota, Sweden and Russia to stop cheating and spoiling revenues from its popular “Fortnite” online multiplayer game. The company also closed its case against a Louisiana boy with a confidential settlement.

Only the Minnesotan faces a $5,000 penalty if he resumes cheating. Epic Games spokesman Nick Chester would not say whether that’s because the company can’t enforce financial penalties against foreign copyright violators. Chester would not say how much Epic Games estimates it has lost because of this cheating.

The company has sued three Americans and seven foreign gamers for hacks that undercut the game the company’s lawyers say is played by more than 30 million people worldwide. The company accuses the hackers of using and sharing covert code.

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