It’s a question that everyone who bets online wants answered: do online casinos cheat? There is a natural skepticism among some people when it comes to playing online casino games for real money. After all, the digital environment seems like one that would lend itself to online casino cheating. There is no way for you to see what is happening behind the scenes. You simply see the cards that are dealt to your blackjack hand or the number that comes up on a roulette wheel.
Online casino gambling is an industry that is predicated on trust. The player must accept that they are going to be treated fairly. Many casinos are actually taking measures to increase trust among players. These measures include provably fair gaming models and live blackjack dealers.
Online Casino Cheating – The Reality
In a perfect world Counting Edge would be able to tell its players that all online casinos are fair. We don’t live or play blackjack in a perfect world, though. To say that there has never been cheating at an online casino would be very dishonest.
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A CNBC report in 2015 about online poker cheating showed that poker operators PokerStars and FullTilt were susceptible to malware that could reveal the hole cards of one player to another. There were over 1,000 attacks of this nature, most of which were reported in Russia and the Ukraine. In the large majority of cases where online poker is concerned, cheating always involves letting a player see another player’s cards.
In online blackjack there would be no benefit to this type of cheating because the hole cards of the player are already visible. Of course, if the player could find a way to see the dealer’s hole card this would be beneficial. Online casinos that cheat at blackjack are usually doing so by somehow circumventing a random number generator to create pre-determined results.
For example, the casino deals the player a 17 and then gives the dealer an 18. Or perhaps the dealer shows a 6 and the player stands on their total of 14. The dealer then turns over a 4 and draws a 7 for a 17 to win. These are all situations where a casino could manipulate the outcome of a game without the player being any wiser.
The truth is that this has probably happened. So many online casinos appear each month. Many of them will disappear a few months later with the deposits players have made, never to be heard from again. It is discouraging to face the possibility that a casino is cheating, but face it one must if they want to play online blackjack for real money.
How Online Casinos Gain Player Trust
Do online casinos cheat? Some do. But there is good news! There are plenty of legitimate online casinos to choose from today. We have reviewed many of them here at Counting Edge. There are also many online casinos that are going above and beyond to gain player trust.
One way in which online casinos can prove that there is no cheating is through something known as provably fair gaming. The provably fair model is used by almost 100% of legitimate casino operators. It involves making the results of games available for examination so that players can verify the randomness of game results.
In a game like online blackjack the online casino computer software is responsible for “dealing” the cards. To make sure that the cards are dealt fairly, a random number generator is used. This RNG randomly decides whether you will receive an Ace or a 6. It also governs which card the dealer will receive.
The RNG chooses the cards from a standard 52-card deck. Each hand begins with a new deck of cards. It is possible to examine the algorithm of the game in a provably fair system to determine if random cards are being assigned to the player and the dealer.
Another methods that online casinos are using to demonstrate fairness is the use of live dealers. In a live dealer blackjack game the player is able to watch the dealer pull cards from a shoe, just like they do in a live casino. In this situation there is no possibility of cheating because everything is transparent and visible. There is no software component in these games aside from the one that displays a virtual version of the physical cards being dealt and allows player and dealer actions.
Why Online Casinos Don’t Cheat
Those who still want to know, “Do online casinos cheat?”, can take some comfort in this simple but powerful fact. The great majority of online casinos do not cheat for a simple reason. They don’t need to. Just like a live casino the online variety has a built-in house edge which is guaranteed to make them a long-term winner. All the online casino needs to do is keep a steady flow of players at games like blackjack and slots.
Another reason that online casinos don’t cheat is because the penalties for doing so can be severe. Most online casinos are regulated by gaming authorities. If players were able to demonstrate that the online casino was cheating the site could lose its license. This is even more true in US jurisdictions like New Jersey where online casinos are permitted.
If you want to know without any doubt that you are being treated fairly by an online casino, stick with the casinos that are recommended by Counting Edge. We evaluate all of them for fairness and quick payouts.