The way that Rockstar Games punishes cheaters and modders in GTA Online can be ironic.
GTA may be a videogame series that is about climbing to the top of the criminal world but the developers don't like it when players do "illegal" activities.
Rockstar Games' suspension and ban policy is strict and has deterred most players from cheating or breaking their terms of service. However, cheaters and modders are still present in GTA lobbies, and the punishment they receive from the developers is ironic given the nature of the game.
Cheating in GTA Online and how Rockstar punishes modders and pirates
It should go without saying that Rockstar is right in punishing cheaters and modders. Regardless of the content found within a title, developers should strive to make their game playable for everybody (especially when microtransactions are involved). If they don't punish them, more modders and cheaters will show up.
Even if GTA Online fans adore the idea of getting free money, it would be unwise for Rockstar to allow that to happen given the whole premise of Shark Cards. Depending on the severity of the actions, players accused of cheating or modding can get permanently banned instantly. More often than not, they'll lose everything and will have to start over from the start. A second strike, however, will lead to a permanent ban.
Cheating in GTA Online
GTA Online is a lawless land at times. Players don't always want to grind for hours just to stay at the top of the game. They especially don't want to spend real-life money constantly. That's why cheating is seen as something so fun. It alleviates the boring aspects of GTA Online where a player tries to earn something.
Although players cheat the system through in-game missions, the great irony is that they shouldn't cheat Rockstar's systems to gain an advantage.
Modders in GTA Online
Just like cheaters, modders are also prevalent in GTA Online. However, they don't always appear to be modders at first glance. They won't necessarily be in a location abusing bugs or glitches, so they can be harder to spot at times (especially when they're not using mods).
Modders are hated even more than cheaters because not all players can mod successfully. Even if it's easy to set up, some players are technologically illiterate, which makes cheating is the more accessible method.
Pirates in GTA Online
Piracy was a bigger issue for GTA Online before the game became more widely available. Considering that it's been out for nearly a decade, most players have access to it by now.
However, some pirates might notice that they cannot connect to GTA Online servers or use the Rockstar Social Club due to the copy of the game they have.
It can be easy to track cheaters and modders in GTA Online based on a number of factors, such as reports, suspicious gains, etc.. However, this doesn't mean all cheaters and modders get punished.
Rockstar doesn't appreciate how some people want to cheat the system. While killing people and trafficking drugs in GTA Online is perfectly okay, cheating to save time from grinding is not okay. It's ironic that this is the situation that the company has created.