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Online Poker “Bot” Crisis Continues: Full Tilt Enforces Ban

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Oct/25/2010
Poker Bots

The world’s second largest online poker room, Full Tilt Poker, has aggressively begun to go after players utilizing so-called “bots”.  An email circulating last week noted that measures were being taken to ban players found to be in violation of the company’s rules relating to use of bots.  Over 1400 accounts were reportedly seized by the company.

A poker bot is software readily advertised across the Net.  The bots allow individuals to profit from Cash games, Sit and Go tournaments and even the huge money making Multi-Table tournaments, without actually taking part in these games themselves.  The bot does all the playing, no user required.

 A search for the term “What is a Poker Bot?” on Google yielded results for several retail operations claiming to offer up the best variations.  Shanky Technologies comes up often and that is the company taking center stage in Full Tilt Poker’s recent crackdown. 

From Poker News Daily:

“For a number of reasons, we are unable to provide additional information regarding this case, including the players involved and the game type where it occurred,” Full Tilt Poker said in the e-mail. The online poker site’s investigation exposed a software release by Shanky Technologies, who owns and operates a website that sells bots for a variety of different games, including No Limit Hold’em, Omaha, and even blackjack. Shanky Technologies apologized to its customers and said that Full Tilt had “quite suddenly and without warning froze all the accounts… although it tolerated the presence of bots all this time.”

The poker bot crisis has long been reported on by Gambling911.com.

In 2008, Andrew Smith of the Dallas News wrote that  “Crooks will enter programs -- or poker bots --as people. Human players will consistently lose. Eventually, all but the stupidest humans will just stop playing."

Supporting his claim that "bots can beat any human" Smith analyzes a poker bot created by the University of Alberta Computer Poker Research Group that beat a few guys from Stoxpoker.com in a series of heads-up matches as the 2008 WSOP.

More recently, PokerStars, the world’s largest online poker company, confirmed a highly sophisticated “bot ring” had infiltrated its room over the summer.

PokerStars swiftly removed all the users from the site.

Full Tilt Poker has had “bot” problems in the past.  Two of its former customers sued the company after they were accused of using “bots” to cheat players.

- Christopher Costigan, Gambling911.com Publisher

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