Blizzard starts Diablo 3 bans for hacking, botting

Blizzard doesn't tolerate cheaters. Or hackers or botters for that matter. To make the point, Blizzard said today that it has suspended or banned thousands of Diablo 3 accounts suspected of taking unfair advantage in the game or exploiting loopholes in the game that violate the terms of service.

Community Manager Zarhym said in a post on the official forums that players were suspended or banned because they were "in violation of the Battle.net Terms of Use for cheating and/or using botting or hacking programs while playing." The post also noted that additional bans could be coming if Blizzard's monitoring uncovers more evidence of cheating.

Blizzard had warned some sort of action was in the offing, reemphasizing it's policy about cheats and hacks in a news post. Reports have been rampant of an exploit in the auction house that allows players to duplicate items, and Blizzard supposedly took servers offline to fix the problem.

With the launch of the real-money auction house coming soon and set to require an authenticator, Blizzard is making it clear that it won't tolerate anyone messing with the in-game economy.