Friday, February 15, 2019

Has an article on the MGM National Harbor Casino opened it and all other Maryland casinos up to casino-cheating?

Leading the State Criminalizing Cheating Push
Well, I, for one, did not know that as of right now, and since the state of Maryland legalized casino table games, it is NOT illegal nor a crime to cheat on Maryland's casinos' gaming tables.


The article I am referring to, released Wednesday, speaks of Maryland's casinos' efforts, especially by the state's biggest casino MGM National Harbor, to get cheating casino table games criminalized. It goes into detail of what should constitute table-games cheating, and the new Maryland House Bill 1036 suggests the following penalties for casino cheating on table games:

1) Cheating for an aggregate amount of less than $100...up to 3 months in jail and pay a small fine.

2) Cheating for more than $1,500 but less than $25,000...a felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine.

So what is the short-term effect of this before, and if, this legislation is signed into law?

Well, probably that there is going to be a full-scale invasion of Maryland's casinos by casino cheats, amateurs and professionals alike, the professionals from all over the world.

After all, if I am reading this right, cheats can just take their shots and the only risks facing them are being banned from casinos and threatened with the trespassing act if they are caught returning to them after being banned.

So I sure hope for the sake of Maryland's casinos that this bill is passed soon...and that the MGM National Harbor's and all Maryland's casinos' table-games departments and surveillance staffs be EXTREMELY vigilant to cheating.

And one more thing, did you notice the second proposed punishment, the felony one? It states "Cheating for more than $1,500 but less than $25,000...a felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine."

What does this mean? That cheating for more than $25,000 is not a felony and maybe not even illegal?? LOL

I sure hope either I am misunderstanding this or there is a mistake in the writing of it!

Friday, February 08, 2019

Casino Robberies and Assaults continue to rise...are they a bigger problem for casinos than Cheating and Advantage Play?

Casino Robberies on the rise
Of course the answer to this question has to be yes, since we are talking about a customer-service oriented business, where those customers must be protected from both the bodily physical and mental harm that these robbery and assault victims can suffer, not to mention the post traumatic stress and related syndromes that follow and can last as long as the victims' lives.

And let's not forget the casino employees who are victims during cage or poker-room robberies as well. They can also suffer the same mental and physical injuries as the casino customers who are robbed and assaulted.

Of course casino cheating is also a huge problem for casinos as is advantage play, but which actually causes casinos more financial harm...

Cheating and advantage play vs assault and robberies?

Impossible for me to say because there are so many variables to consider. Casinos can lose millions of dollars from one attack or robbery, not only money stolen but from subsequent lawsuits surely to follow. Now, of course, the actual money from robberies and legal judgements against casinos will likely be covered by casinos' insurance, but then you have to add in the cost of that insurance.

Cheating incidents such as the Phil Ivey/Kelly Sun baccarat edge-sorting scam and high-tech slot jackpot scams can also cost the casinos millions in one shot. And some casinos do actually have "casino-cheating insurance," so again actual costs and losses associated with cheating and advantage play are quite difficult to assign.

In both cases, losses by violence and losses by table and slot games, the problem for casinos is huge!

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Too many articles about Casino-Cheating written by people who have no clue what they're writing about.

High-Tech protection without good staff won't get it done
Take this one, for example. It's an article written by Chris Smith, who claims he "likes to write about tech and gadgets," but clearly has no idea what he's talking about outside the tech and gadgets when it comes to casino surveillance and security. I'm sure that Mr. Smith knows all the ins and outs of high-tech cameras and digital equipment, even that which is used by casinos to protect themselves against cheaters (some of whom have their own high-tech and gadgets), but he, like many other high-tech writers, should not be writing these articles because they give a false sense of security by omission.

In Mr. Smith's article, titled "Technologies casinos use to catch cheaters," he talks about "5 of the most used technologies that casinos use to catch unwanted cheaters." He goes on to give a short description of how each technology operates, and he is accurate to a tee.

But the article falls flat on its paper because the writer exudes the greatness of the technologies and makes references to things like the movie "Ocean's Eleven" to state his certainty that it is almost impossible to cheat casinos today, let alone rob one like they do in "Ocean's Eleven" and other movies.

Well, first of all, I guess Mr. Smith does not read many articles about casino robberies these days. Despite all the technologies, casinos are being robbed at an all-time high. Not nearly a day goes by without some kind of major casino robbery occurring in the United States, and lots of them are violent.

But I will let that ignorance on the part of Mr. Smith go because it is excusable. But what is not excusable is that he fails to mention the one thing that nullifies a great deal of that technology when it's used by casinos...THE PEOPLE, CHRIS...THE PEOPLE WHO NEED TO OPERATE AND INTERPRET THAT TECHNOLOGY AND ACT ON IT!!!

The digital surveillance equipment is only going to show the cheating. It's not going to explain it.

Maybe Chris never read about me. I, for one, beat all that technology in casinos because I knew that if I were able to beat the people responsible for interpreting the data, all that technology would only help me cheat the casinos...Chris, if you're reading, I'm talking about my infamous Savannah roulette cheat-move. And that move didn't even need the set-ups and psychology that I and other skilled cheats use (used in my case) to nullify that technology in many cases.

Look, I don't want to sound haughty here, but what pisses me off is that people reading these articles are led to falsely believe that casino-cheating is declining because of high-tech casino defense systems. Of course the technology helps, but don't let any of these one-track writers let you believe that casinos are getting cheated and robbed less than they used to. The amount of cheats may be less but the amount they cheat for is a heckuva lot more!

And this is especially important for those of you who work hard in surveillance and know that the people play a much bigger part than the technology...if your casino is running the way it should be and has good people doing their jobs.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Are Casino and Poker Cheating Devices Currently on Display in Casinos and Museums still in use?

Good ol' poker holdout device
Some of you may have visited or read about some museums in Las Vegas and Casinos in the US that have displays of various ingenious casino cheating devices that have been used in both remote and recent times. Some of the devices normally on display are the holdout device, primarily used in poker games where a player holds out a card from the deck and sneaks it into play when he needs it, and a multitude of slot machine manipulation devices.

Some of you may wonder whether some of these devices still see the light of modern casinos. The short answer is no. Modern digital technology and random number generators have virtually made all non-digital slot machine gadgets extinct and it's been a long time since a poker holdout device has appeared in a legitimate public gambling casino or cardroom.

However, that "short" answer may just be short. Although the latest modern cheating devices such as computers, laser scanners and cell phones are not generally on display, such older devices that are still see the light of gambling games. This would be mainly in private home games and in casinos operating outside the law or even temporary charity casinos. In these casinos, those cheats who would not dare to risk using cheating devices in regular state and federally sponsored casinos for fear of prison if caught, surely would have no reason to fear using them in the aforementioned gaming venues.

All in all, whatever the status of any of these museum cheating devices currently is, it is certainly worth your time to see this stuff on display.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Serious Casino-Cheating-Related Incidents Cast Spell and Doubt over Chilean Casino...

Funny lookin' pair of Kings!
and reignites the forever unending debate whether casinos ever intentionally cheat their players.

Here is what happened at the Casino Marina del Sol, the biggest casino in Chile:

Complaints for fraud and mis-management of a casino were filed against the Marina del Sol Casino in Talcahuano, accusing it of using defaulted cards that made it impossible to win.

In fact, four people who regularly attend the casino to play poker demanded to investigate the facts after it was discovered early in the morning last Wednesday that duplicate cards and even decks of 51 cards and not the full 52 made it impossible to win.

According to casino patron Cristian González, when casino authorities began reviewing the decks they discovered several irregularities, most of which concerned duplicate cards of the same value and suit.

The legal action, sponsored by lawyer Abelardo Landeros, was admitted to the Court of Guarantee of Talcahuano, requesting the investigation for fraud by the Public Ministry.

According to the complaint, the casino offered reparations in order to replace the money lost by those players on the games with irregular decks of cards. One of the players, Francisco Troncoso, said that sums of between 200 and 500 thousand Chilean pesos were raised, an offer that was reiterated last Thursday.

The evidence gathered during the incident confirmed the suspicions the players had about the irregularities of the cards and how those irregularities made it very difficult to win.

Carlos Concha, general manager of Marina del Sol, admitted that there was an error in the case of the complainants with the control systems of the decks, by which internal measures were taken and the Superintendency of Casinos was also informed.

"No one noticed, not even the dealers, that there were two or more duplicate cards in the decks used in the games,"  he said.

Through a statement, the Superintendency of Casinos said it took cognizance of facts that could account for irregularities in the game room of Marina del Sol.

In addition, the agency announced that it will officiate the casino to obtain more information, without prejudice to carry out an inspection in the field if deemed necessary.

Once the complete situation with all the antecedents is analyzed, the casino will adopt the corresponding courses of action, without ruling out the beginning of an administrative sanctioning procedure.

My take: Wow! This is pretty serious stuff...and the scary thing about it? appears to be a case of honest mistakes and dereliction. In fact, this reminds me of some American casinos that were dealing new decks of supposedly pre-shuffled cards that in fact had never been shuffled, so they came out of card shoes in their original order, allowing players catching on to this to make huge profits by betting accordingly.

Friday, January 18, 2019

Were Phil Ivey and Kelly Sun Alone?

Were they alone?
We've all heard countless times of the baccarat edge-sorting exploits of Phil Ivey and Kelly Sun, how they edge-sorted their way to tens of millions of dollars in multi-casinos, most notably Crockfords in London and the Borgata in Atlantic City, only to have to give most of their winnings back because courts in both the UK and US ruled they won the money unfairly without saying it was downright cheating.

But yesterday I received an email that puts a new light on the whole thing. I CANNOT verify the authenticity of this but the info comes from someone involved in casino surveillance for many years whom I find very credible based on info he has given me in the past.

According to him, a casino that was victimized by edge-sorting has video footage of an Asian team edge-sorting in exactly the same manner as Ivey and Sun did, that is to say they instructed the dealers to turn the cards after they were dealt and lying face down on the table so they could read the sorts and then make their bets. And those bets were for very large stakes.

And neither Ivey nor Sun is seen in the video!

Also, it is not clear to me if this particular casino that was victimized by edge-sorting was ever victimized by Sun and Ivey. I was told that the video of the unidentified Asians edge-sorting is from the same time period (2012) during which Ivey and Sun hit Crockfords.

So what does this mean and is it important?

Well, I do think it's important to know how widespread this scam really was, but what about the fact, if it is one, that there is evidence of people edge-sorting for large sums of money who are not named Phil Ivey or Kelly Sun?

Now it is perfectly clear that Sun had edge-sorted both by herself and with partners before she met up with Ivey and included him in the scam, and these people could have gone off on their own. But whatever the case, even though edge-sorting was known by several people in game protection and surveillance long before even Sun showed up, no one has spoken of having video evidence of any major edge-sorting wins not involving the dynamic duo who made edge-sorting a household word in casino households all over the world.

All in all, and again I stress IF this is true, several more casinos besides the Borgata and Crockfords, may have been beaten for tens of millions around the world and kept quiet for one reason or another.

Which begs another question or two: If a casino has this video evidence of non-Ivey/Sun big baccarat edge-sorting wins, how come it has not been made public by that casino and with whom have they shared this evidence?

Or maybe some of you out there already know about this and it is not as big a deal as I think it is??

So if anyone out there has any info on this that they would like to share, please do!

Friday, January 11, 2019

Good Article on Online Cheating and Advantage Play

    Online Cheating and AP?

    Can you cheat online gaming sites? Yes and no. It’s more accurate to say that you can play them by giving yourself an unfair advantage.

    A genuinely foolproof way of cheating online gaming sites could make you some serious money. Plenty of people say they can do it, and many software copanies say they have the tools to help you cheat online casinos. But is it possible? Read on to find out.

    Online gaming generates billions of dollars every year, and most of that comes from the players. But for gamers to spend their money, they need to know they aren’t being cheated by the site they choose to use. Algorithms help online gaming sites keep their games honest.
    There are some major software providers of online casino games, including Playtech and Microgaming. Each of these companies uses a random number generator algorithm to keep the odds fair. This also works for the online gaming sites too, as it prevents players from being able to guess their hands or spins.
    Gambling companies are often accused of feeding addiction, offering free incentives to sign up and glamorizing betting. But the online gaming industry is putting considerable effort into tackling addiction, and AI is helping them to do this.
    UK online casino Mr. Green recently developed an AI tool together with Sustainable Interaction to help gamers catch addictive behavior. Players get their dashboard and are given a risk score from 1-100. If their risk level is unhealthy, they get advice on how to lower it and stop their behavior from leading to addiction.
    I said earlier that free incentives are one of the draws of online casinos. If you’re smart, you can cheat the system and get more than one free deposit bonus. How? By setting up multiple accounts.
    This is as easy to do as it sounds. All you need to do is use different details when setting up your account. This is made possible because many online casinos don’t insist on you providing ID when you sign up.
    Does it work? Yes and no. Though many online gaming sites let you slip through the door without ID, you’ll often need it to cash out. So while it is possible to cheat the system by setting up multiple accounts, it’s far from being a safe bet.
    Collusion has been a feature of gaming since it began. People come together and secretly pass on information to give themselves and their partners an advantage. If you play your cards right, this can be a winning way of cheating online gaming sites.
    A simple way of doing this is for you and your friends to sit alongside each other while you play. You can pass on any information you have and the one best positioned to win is allowed a free hit. You then share out the winnings between yourselves.
    Can you cheat gaming sites this way? Yes, to a degree. The caveat to this is that it’s only profitable in card games, particularly poker. Even then it still only gives you an advantage, as you won’t know what hand your opponent has.
    AI and algorithms aren’t only a force for good in online gaming. There are many tools and pieces of software you can download which help you cheat online games. How? By monitoring the behavior, dynamics, and performance of the game to point out weak points.
    Does this cheat the game successfully? Of the methods I’ve mentioned, this is the best way to cheat online gaming sites. It does so by giving you a competitive advantage, one that allows you to make informed decisions. So you’re not cheating the gaming sites, but playing them. The best example of this working in practice is poker tracker.
    Be warned, though. There are lots of hacking software out there which claims to beat casino games. I recommend steering clear of any slot games that claim to cheat online gaming sites. I also advise that you research any software company before downloading their tool(s).
    Can you cheat online gaming sites? Yes and no. It’s more accurate to say that you can play them by giving yourself an unfair advantage. There aren’t the hard and fast cheats to win, because online gaming sites have technology that’s sophisticated enough to catch them.  
    My advice is to head over to an online gaming website and get clued up on the rules. Once you’ve done this using industry approved software, like PokerTracker. If you and a few friends do this together, you may just cheat the system!
    My take: Pretty good article here.

    Wednesday, January 02, 2019

    The Great Hole-Carding-Cheating-or-Not-Cheating-Debate.

    Flashing a hole-card
    This argument is even older than the Phil Ivey Edge-Sorting debate which asks whether or not the practice of edge-sorting is cheating or not cheating. I have written loads of articles on Ivey's case and am clearly convinced Ivey was cheating, but edge-sorting is cheating ONLY when the edge-sorter(s) influences or alters the dealing of the game to achieve the possibility to edge-sort.

    The debate around the hole-carding-cheating-or-not-cheating-issue is similar to the edge-sorting case but not at all the same. Most experts and game protection people say it is not cheating, and I certainly agree with them.

    There are, however, two instances that make for good argument that hole-carding is indeed cheating.

    The first is when the individual hole-carder or hole-carding team does something to influence the dealer's dealing of the cards that causes the dealer to flash his hole card in blackjack or any card or cards in carnival games. To me, that would be cheating. Just like Ivey convinced the dealers to deal the baccarat games the way he wanted and against normal dealing procedure in order to make the edge-sorting possible, anyone coercing dealers, either mentally or physically, to flash hole-cards is the same type of cheating in my opinion.

    But if a dealer is giving up hole-cards only through fault of his own, there is no way that hole-carders reading the hole-cards can be construed as cheating. NO WAY!

    The second scenario is the signalling between hole-carders that gives them a bigger advantage against the casino because they can get more money on the layout when they have knowledge of the dealer's or other players' hole-cards.

    Is that cheating?
    Well, even if it is, it isn't.

    Am I trying to sound like a pompous idiot? No. What I am saying is this: Hole-carding may be morally cheating but it can never be construed as real or legal cheating.

    Why? Well, I will tell you this: No one would EVER be convicted for passing signals to other players at the table concerning the value of the dealer's hole card.

    Why do I say that? Well, the reasoning, if you agree that basic hole-carding without the hole-carders influencing the dealers, is not cheating or illegal, how can passing signals related to a legal act be considered illegal?

    After all, any lawyer could easily argue that since the act of hole-carding by itself is completely legal, how can passing signals about something legal be illegal? The "conspiracy" in question would be nothing more than conspiring to commit a legal act!

    OK! I am tired of writng and hypenating the word or words "Hole-Carding"!!!

    Friday, December 28, 2018


    To All of You!
    I want to wish all my blog readers a very happy and healthy New Year, and I look forward to writing more interesting blog articles in 2019!

    Thank you all very much!

    Saturday, December 22, 2018

    WSOP Cheating Allegations Fly!

    Justin Lapka accused of Poker Cheating
    I personally believe that cheating at the World Series of Poker Tournament has gone down substantially over the past decade but we still certainly hear of cheating incidents. The big one coming from the 2018 $600 No Limit Hold'em Double Stack event is Justin Lapka being accused of starting the tournament with $5,000 more in chips than the rest of the players, and trying to get away with it. All the players were given $40,000 in chips but Lapka was given $45,000.

    According to reports, a player named Shawn Daniels was sitting near Justin Lapka and noticed that Lapka had $5,000 more in chips than everyone else at the table. Daniels said he tried to get Lapka to acknowledge the error, made by tournament employees who just accidentally distributed the extra $5,000 in chips, but Lapka got mad and supposedly said, "I will do what I have's business." Daniels posted this account on Twitter and warned players to be aware whenever they interact with Lapka.

    Lapka responded to the Daniels' tweet by saying he had been aware of the error in his favor but since it wasn't his fault he wasn't going to return the extra $5,000 in chips. This type of excuse is not accepted in the poker-tournament community. The error was ultimately noticed by the dealer, who took the extra chips away.

    Another player named Steven Snyder said this about Justin Lapka: "He has to be the biggest douche I've ever met at the tables...Constantly talking shit when he loses a pot and just always unhappy making smart ass comments to everyone. He thinks he's some hotshot player."

    Another player named DJ MacKinnon said of Lapka: "If he admitted to the table he knew and didn't do anything about it, I would definitely give him a one or two-round penalty."

    It seemed all the backlash finally got to Lapka. He issued this apology: "I just wanna acknowledge that I made a decision tonight without a full understanding of how my decisions may affect other people or the poker community at-large.

    My take: This is more or less a minor cheating incident that, I would say, a fair percentage of poker players would let slide if the same over-distribution of chips went their way. However, that does not mean it isn't cheating.