Valve bans Steam curator groups identified in key reselling scam

Valve banned several curator groups from Steam, after it was alleged that they were owned by a small number of people using the system as a means of reselling keys.

On Sunday (August 28), alleged Cowcat developer that his last game, Brok The Investigator, was receiving negative reviews. This was due to Cowcat issuing Steam curators who had requested a key with a prologue version of the game, which could not be finished.

Cowcat’s logic was that while legitimate Steam curators would contact and receive a regular key, scammers would resell the key without playing it, causing them to leave angry reviews when their buyers complained about the unfinished game.

Shortly after Cowcat drew attention to the influx of negative reviews, a Reddit user discovered that every curator who left a negative review had their accounts created on the same two days, and they all shared the same primary admin.

Brok The Investigator.  Credit: Cowcat.
Brok The Investigator. Credit: Cowcat.

Since the key resale scam was discovered, all the groups that targeted Brok The Investigator have been banned from Steam. While resellers once had over 200,000 combined followers, trying to access one of the groups now displays the message “This group has been removed for violating Steam community rules and guidelines.”

Before the groups were banned, Cowcat said it was “unacceptable for Steam to allow such fake reviewers to continue their activity of harassing independent developers for keys.”

“Never buy keys on gray sites, folks,” the developer continued. “Independent developers don’t get any money from them. They are stolen keys. You’re just giving your money to leeches!

In other gaming news, Ubisoft has announced that rock smith+ It will be released next week after a long delay, with a catalog of more than 5,000 songs with artists such as The Clash, Eurythmics and Alicia Keys.

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