The nature of gambling is closely related to success. As success can never be guaranteed for anyone, cheating is kept in step with gambling from the very beginning. However, everything is changing fast, so the ways of cheating and prevention have entered new levels in the last years.
In the old days, gambling buddies were cheating on each other while playing cards in some old Western saloons and everything was solved in a gunfight. More recently, gamblers have been trying to cheat on different casinos and, as a result, the security cameras, as well as extensive monitoring of the areas, has been adopted as a prevention. Finally, as the digital forms of gambling came to the scene, the smart technologies came to the rescue to avoid cheating and fraud.
It is an unwritten fact, that online poker has been the most common form of online gaming for a long time. In the beginning, many customers were incredulous of gaming online, fearing that money and personal data could not be safe in a digital space, and therefore security system against the cheaters was not seen as a primary thing. While the online games were growing in popularity, some serious precautions had to be taken. Fortunately, online gaming has proven to be resilient to efforts of cheating, although there are still some cases where it does occur, as with a help of technology the ways of cheating become smarter every day.
The most common ways of cheating
When talking about cheating in card games, people imagine a player who hides a card in his sleeve. But the time flies and the IT technologies are getting smarter, so the creativity of gamblers is growing as well. The most common ways of cheating in online gaming are known for the service operators and they are seeking for more effective methods to put a halter upon all cheaters. Some of the cheating tricks are simple and obvious:
- Multiple accounts – a player creates a few different accounts with fake personal data in order to get additional bonuses of a first deposit.
- Deposit evasion – a player is looking for no deposit bonuses and registers a large number of accounts in order to get numerous bonuses.
- Hack a system – a programmer tries to find a vulnerability of the software and get a rare advantage by interfering in the programming part.
The cases, as mentioned above, have been significantly decreased in the past years, as various kinds of software packages are used to check actions of players, as well as more sophisticated tests, are adopted to make sure that there are no fraudulent activities. The security standards have been increased, so the attempts to break into the systems are usually caught at an initial stage as well.
It is nevertheless true that any bad intentions cannot be beaten for perpetuity. Even if it requires a lot of time, strong logical and analytical skills, people try to invent more complex ways of cheating.
- Gambling bot – it is a cheating software. As many card games are based on the probability theory and can be explained in a mathematical way, a computer can easily deal with it. The bot plays on low limits, as well as it can adopt the most appropriate strategy for a particular game. As the best part, a software has no emotions or feelings, as a result, it does not get tired and cannot feel a desire for a revenge.
- Ghosting – it is a strategy when a player secretly is not playing by himself only. The strategy of ghosting is common in the long online tournaments. Sometimes, an additional player can physically sit beside the main player or such tools as Skype or WhatsApp can be used instead. Ghosting is mainly used in the late stages of the online tournaments when the amounts of money are big.
- Collusion – it is another strategy when two or more players at the table secretly are playing as a team. The collaborated players are sharing the information about the value of their hole cards or are cooperating to win the money of an opponent. The collusion is defined as a clear case of fraud and it is forbidden by the online gaming sites and poker rooms.
As the creativity of people is endless, there are plenty other ways of cheating. Still, these are the most common ways and they are difficult to indicate at times. On the other hand, the creativity is used for the prevention as well, so the gambling operators are fighting with the cheaters intensively.
The news in security
Despite the big initial costs, the protection against the fraud of online gaming is vitally important for all operators and is worth the investment. The highly developed technology can assist to detect and catch many cheaters amongst their clients.
Many different methods and analysis to ensure an online security are invented. Some implementations can provide the information in formats that are difficult for a bot to interpret, but which are easy for humans to use. Additionally, the special programmes are able to track and analyse the activities of all players and help to identify all patterns and models.
Other inventions provide an approach of the multi-tier architecture for data analysis. This analysis might be performed by a server itself, while other analysis can be performed by a host device. The combination of a few methods can even help to detect a collaboration between players and close the doors for this impermissible activity.
The new trend in online gaming security is the usage of the artificial intelligence (AI). The insightful data analysis and machine learning capabilities of AI can root out the cheating players and protect the system. AI is supposed to quickly identify and alert about a cheating scheme, as well as to detect a forbidden communication or collaboration.
The invention of the new ways for cheating prevention and new security methods is a never-ending cycle. The cybersecurity game of cat and mouse between hackers and developers of the security systems is a great source of progress in the growth of the smart technologies. However, the fitting of the AI in the online gaming industry requires more testing, thus promising a safer environment for players in the near future.