Is Online Poker Rigged?

It is common for a poker player to directly accuse or insinuate that online poker is rigged. This is usually a result of a player receiving a “bad beat”. Phrases are jokingly made such as “jokerstars” referring to the popular poker network, PokerStars. However, a lot people share the common theory that the poker sites rig their software as to encourage action; increasing their profit  Poker88. The theories and conspiracies cannot be proven, and many an investigation has been made into the credibility of these accusations.

Rigging a poker site would be like cheating at your final exams – the costs outweigh the gain. If a poker site is caught rigging their software then it is likely that the said site will lose all the credibility and loyalty of its customers; customers that it has taken many years to gain the trust of. Rigging a poker site, according to Game Theory, would be irrational and illogical.

Human nature is a strange thing; psychologists Jean-Paul Sartre and Soren Kierkegaard were a couple of the first to look into human behaviour and more recent psychologists have studied the minds of poker players. One thing that has been discovered about online poker is that humans are naturally very suspicious. Reasons for this natural suspicion lie in the fact that the mechanism controlling the outcome of an event cannot physically be seen. Unlike in a live game, you are unable to see the cards being shuffled and cut.

Amazingly, the site uses the players to choose the order of the cards using “user input, including summary of mouse movements and events timing, collected from client software”. In the event that there are problems with this as a RNG (random number generator), they have a backup: “true hardware random number generator developed by Intel, which uses thermal noise as an entropy source”. Furthermore, the RNG is certified by 2 independent organizations: Cigital and BMM International.

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