Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Can You be Cheated in Casinos by the Poker Analyzer?

Poker Analyzer Cheat Hardware
Earlier this month we heard about a poker scam at the Alea casino in Glasgow, Scotland, where a poker dealer teamed up with a player and used high-tech electronic equipment to swindle the game.

So how much of a threat is this to you in brick and mortar poker games...and perhaps other house-banked games as well?

Before I answer that, let me explain how this Poker Analyzer scam works.

It takes a collusion agreement between a dealer and at least one player. It also requires that an electronically-marked deck of cards, similar to the way retail bar codes are embedded into boxes and bags, be put into play at the target game. The dealer must lay the deck of cards on the table untethered to his hands.

This allows a tiny mobile phone camera disguised as a cell phone lying on the table to read the "bar code" off the cards. It then sends a signal to a second mobile device inside the playing-cheat's pocket, which generates a recording that is received by an earpiece plugged in the cheat´s ear. The recording gives the cheat at the table the value of all the cards as they come into play.

That's pretty much the stone cold nuts advantage when you're playing poker against legitimate players.

But does this really happen in public casinos and card rooms?

Well, my short answer is that I've only heard of it happening this one time at the Scottish casino. I don't know how accurate the report is or how much money players at the table were fleeced for. I would say that you being a victim of a poker-analyzer scam inside a legitimate gaming establishment is extremely unlikely. Too many variables are involved, let alone the risk of bringing all that electronic equipment into the game, which in many casino jurisdictions is a felony in itself punishable by prison time.

However, this electronic poker scam can be deadly in home games and unlicensed and illegal games. Cheats working those games with the Poker Analyzer wouldn't have to worry about any legal consequences when getting caught, although they might face the risk of getting the shit kicked out of them.

The giveaway to this scam is the dealer laying the deck of cards on the table after each shuffle, as this is necessary to give the camera the space and time it needs to record the markings on the cards. Also beware of a winning player often touching his pocket to adjust the mobile device hidden there.

What about other casino card games such as blackjack and 3-card poker? Can you be cheated at these games by the Poker Analyzer?

Same answer as above: most likely only if you are playing in somebody's house or in an unlicensed or illegal casino.

All in all, I wouldn't worry about Poker Analyzer as a threat in aboveboard casinos.

What happened in Scotland probably stays in Scotland...and who knows just how aboveboard that Scots casino even is?