Among the things that never fail to surprise casino authorities are the creative ways in which players cheat when playing games. One of the most notable of recent cases is that of Radoslav Skubnik.
In June 2016, a Singapore court sentenced Skubnik to 22 months in prison after he was found guilty for cheating at slot machines using smartphone technology. Skubnik, along with Andrei Egorov and Vladislav Logachev, was nabbed by authorities after cheating at Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa casinos.
Cheating with Smartphones
According to Deputy Public Prosecutor Jordon Li, the Russian syndicate focused on slot machines produced by certain developers. The syndicate would send a team comprised of a leader known as the Master, and several Players.
The team would then use smartphones to record the screens of slots being played. The Master then sent the recorded information to a server, which would decode the play patterns and predict when next the slot would make a big payout.
The decoded data would then be sent back to the Master, who would then pass it on to the Players. The Players would then target the relevant slot machines and win.
The Players would each receive 10 per cent of the winnings, and the Master would then receive 5 per cent of what each player received. The balance would be handed over to the syndicate.
What Happened in Singapore
In April 2016, Skubnik was contacted by Logachev, and told to travel to Singapore with the smartphones.
Skubnik, Logachev, and Egorov landed in Singapore on 5 May, and promptly got to work. They travelled to Resorts World Sentosa, recorded slot machines, sent the information to the server, and received the decoded information on the same day.
That evening, Skubnik returned to the casino, and promptly won US$6402. He visited the casino again over the next two days, and won US$13 352.
However, his luck ran out on 7 May. Something went wrong, and the syndicate’s clever smartphone cheating technology failed to do what it was supposed to do. Instead of winning, Skubnik lost US$783.
The police were alerted that something was amiss, and they swooped in on Skubnik. The police managed to recover almost US$120 000 in winnings.
The cheat pleaded guilty to the three charges brought against him under the Casino Control Act.
Thankfully, the best online casino games use certified random number generators and quality software, making it virtually impossible to cheat.