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Archive for the ‘poker cheating’ Category

This is an unbelievable story. Brian Townsend over a short period of time has developed  a good reputation as being an excellent online cash game player and has been building up his entrepreneurial skills with his association with the Cardrunners site. He had a somewhat meteoric rise to fame last year, although from the results point of view has had a flat 2008 resulting in the need to drop down from the very high stakes he was playing. This probably peaked last year when he was playing in Bobby’s room during the 2007 WSOP playing against the top pros and had huge swings against Sammy Farha.

This is a youtube video of him playing a $363,000 pot against Patrik Antonius in one of the Fulltilt million dollar cash games.

He has now announced that this year he has been multi-accounting on Pokerstars and Fulltiltpoker in his blog.

He has been suspended from his red pro status on Fulltiltpoker for 6 months, although we haven’t heard what Pokerstars are doing.

The confession is certainly open, although I get the feeling that it was one that was made out of necessity because he got caught and this is the only honourable way out of the situation. However it only goes to show how easy it is for someone to setup more than one account. He says that at no stage did he play at the same table; the reason he did it (he states) is that he wanted to play anonymously whilst playing at lower levels.

This does make you wonder how many people do multi-account for more sinister purposes!

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This is an interesting article published in the local rag, The Sydney Morning Herald.

The article is actually derived from a New York Times article written by an Ian Ayres. 

These articles reminded me of a blog entry by Paul Wasicka a few months ago. 

In principle, this sounds fairly scary, but I think there is a long way to go before this becomes a real threat. I would be interested to hear what online poker sites are doing to firstly detect bots, and secondly, what they intend to do about it.

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I am a bit behind the 8 ball on this story, but it needs to be posted. I am not sure whether this story, or the WCOOP Main Event story came first, but both are a worry.

From cardplayer.com: “The Kahnawake Gaming Commission (KGC) has hired an independent auditor to investigate claims that Absolute Poker’s security system was breached during a $1,000 buy-in tournament held last month. There is speculation that a former Absolute Poker employee shared holecard information with the winner of that tournament.

The investigation stems from a request made by professional poker player Marco Johnson, who plays under the screen name “CrazyMarco.” Immediately after the tournament, which took place on Sept. 12, he requested the hand history for a final table from Absolute Poker after a player named POTRIPPER called his all-in bluff with a busted nine-high flush draw with just 10 high.

Instead of the hands for the final table, Absolute Poker sent Johnson a spreadsheet containing a large amount of information about the first 94 hands of the tournament.

Card Player obtained a copy of this hand-history spreadsheet from Nat Arem, the first member of the poker community to analyze the spreadsheet in depth and share his findings with a number of prominent poker forums. The document is a little more than 9 megabytes in size (very large for a spreadsheet) and contains 65,536 lines of information.

The hand history shows a pattern of unorthodox poker play, wherein POTRIPPER maximizes his profits and minimizes his losses perfectly in each hand. The entire hand history is available in a video format on YouTube. ”

The initial post on Pocketfives here is.

Here are the 4 videos showing hole cards of all players where possible. It looks nothing other than highly suspicious.

The story continues:

Whilst posting this, I have just seen a post on Pocketfives about Absolute Poker coming clean:

“PocketFives just received a phone call from Absolute Poker confirming the suspicions of the online poker community over the past month. While we need to be vague in this post to respect their wishes, we can say that their systems were compromised, and that they are prepared to provide the details in a statement coming shortly.

Part of the statement will include a plan to refund players affected by this compromise.

We are extremely relieved to hear this outcome, as our most important goal in all this is to see justice given to those who were cheated in this process. Pocketfives is extremely proud to have played a part in the process of uncovering the impropriety that has occurred. We would of course like to thank all the other parties who played a key role in this process—specifically the folks that have been posting here and at twoplustwo.com.

This is great news for everyone. Keep your eyes out for the statement.”

Here is a blog post from Mark Seif about the situation.

Here is a report from Pokernews.com

“Absolute Poker confirms security breach” from Cardplayer.

I will add more to this post as news comes out.

Update 13th November: I missed this update from a few days ago. This is from Pokerlistings.

“Joe Norton, the former grand chief of the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake and the owner of Tokwiro Enterprises ENRG, which holds a 100% interest in Absolute Poker, sent out a statement Thursday with more information about the poker site’s recent security breach.

“First and foremost, we would like to assure our players, once again, that the security breach, which resulted in unfair play, was resolved immediately after it was discovered and confirmed, and AP’s sites are absolutely secure,” Norton said.

Players affected by the breach have been fully reimbursed with interest – an amount estimated at $1.6 million in refunds.

So far an internal audit by the poker site has discovered that the unfair play went on for about 40 days, beginning on Aug. 14.

……………………………”

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This is big news.

“The investigation into the WCOOP Main Event has now been concluded.

We have determined, based on the totality of evidence, that the tournament winner “TheV0id” was in breach of the PokerStars Terms of Service.

In the interests of Game Integrity, “TheV0id” has been disqualified from first place.

All other WCOOP Main Event prizewinners in addition to the player who originally bubbled in 415th place will therefore advance one place in the prize pool. The necessary financial adjustments to reflect the revised tournament places will be made within the next 24 hours.

Please note that we are unable to release further details of this investigation, for reasons of confidentiality and privacy.

Stephen W.
Manager, PokerStars Game Security”

The rumour is that he was multi-accounting. I applaud Pokerstars for their prompt action, and congratulations to “ka$ino” whom I imagine will be the new winner.

And this also means that Vanessa Rousso will now officially finish second and win almost $400, 000 more!

And I have only just realised that Josh Arieh was at the final table.

Here is the new finishing order with winnings taken from Cardplayer.com.

Place Player Winnings POY Points OPOY Points
First ka$ino $1,378,331 1,800 2,400
Second Vanessa “LadyMaverick” Rousso $700,783 1,500 2,000
Third HelmetSky $463,941 1,200 1,600
Fourth mpg1000 $382,245 900 1,200
Fifth Josh “nitbuster” Arieh $307,295 750 1,000
Sixth E-Daddie $232,345 600 800
Seventh mao15 $163,391 450 600
Eighth Fischer80 $103,431 300 400
Ninth Telefonkiosk $59,960 150 200

Here is the thread at 2+2

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