TL;DR If your account is flagged for buying stolen/duped items, you will still be banned even if you put a weapon/crate into the trade because Valve also takes item value into account. I'm making this thread to combat the seemingly popular notion that if you put any item (aka a weapon or a crate) into an otherwise completely 1-sided trade, you are protecting yourself from being trade banned by Valve. I can understand how this idea started, but I can assure you that it is completely wrong. Why? read on. First off, Valve does not care about 1-sided trades as long as any of the items being traded have not been obtained by fraudulent means. I have completed hundreds and thousands of 1-sided trades with hundreds of different people and even with my 330 idle accounts; none of which have had any consequences because the items were not stolen/duped. I have, however, been trade banned. Twice. Both of these bans were the result of me buying some items that were stolen/duped previously before I bought them. Since I paid with paypal, the trades were 1-sided and my account was flagged and trade banned. This happened, because to Valve, it looks as though the stolen items are being transferred to other account and not traded fairly to an unsuspecting trader. So now you may be thinking "If you had put an item into the trade you wouldn't have gotten banned". Well guess what, I did. My first trade ban was the result of buying 16 buds, and during the trade I put in 3 refined metal. This obviously disproves the fact that even though a trade is 2-sided you can still get banned if the trade is not equal in value (and one or more of the items you are trading for is stolen). So to summarize the process of how Valve's system works: 1. Valve finds out an item is stolen or duped. 2. They track that items trade history and look at all the trades. 3. If the trade is 1-sided, they flag that account that bought it. 4. If the trade is 2-sided (in value) they will not flag the account because they see that the player has traded equally for it. As in my case, my account was flagged when I bought the buds even though I had gave 3 refined to the seller. They saw the trade and determined it was 1-sided in value (16 buds for 3 ref, kinda obvious) and trade banned me. So now you're asking how does Valve determine if a trade has equal value? Well I can't give an exact answer here so my best assumption is that they simply just have employees who know the approximate market value of the items and determine for themselves. Or maybe they use Mann.Co store prices to compare, who knows. But what I can say for sure is that putting a weapon or crate into a trade does not protect you at all. If you still think I'm talking out of my ass then I've attached a screenshot with some of the support tickets that Valve left for me regarding the trade bans. I've put red boxes over the parts that clearly show they take item value into account when looking at trades. So please stop asking people to put a weapon or crate into the trade, it is utterly pointless.