The use of RTA software is a significant concern, and we will continue to work hard to effectively develop our detection abilities888poker continues to crack down on bot detection as well as shoring up how it detects players using Real-Time Assistance (RTA) software.
Amit Berkovich, VP and Head of 888poker shed light on these issues as well as other responsible gaming issues that are core to the company, in an exclusive interview with Poker Industry PRO.
Real-Time Assistance or RTA tools advise players how to act in certain situations while at the tables. These tools could be in the form of simple charts or software “solvers” that use game-theory optimal (GTO) simulations to provide highly accurate and nuanced advice. However, more and more online poker sites are cracking down on accounts that use these tools, giving players unfair advantages over recreational players.
“The use of RTA software is a significant concern, and we will continue to work hard to effectively develop our detection abilities to counter violators’ attempts to disguise their use,” Berkovich told PRO. “Over the course of 2021, we have increased the headcount of our team who is focused on fair gaming, further developed our tech monitoring software, and hired a number of leading data scientists and professional poker players to work alongside the team to detect bots and Real-Time Advisors.”
We aim to keep investing heavily in order to continue to ensure a safe playing ground for our players “We have also made significant progress in our bot and RTA detection abilities, developing new technology, hiring data scientists and professional poker players who are working together to find those programs that allow for an unfair advantage. We, of course, compensate players who have lost money to players using such software,” Berkovich went on to say.
When it comes to cracking down on fraudulent accounts, 888 has made concerted efforts this year to detect and shut down such accounts, and has reimbursed $300,000 to players who these fake accounts have targeted. The operator also released information stating that 1390 players have been refunded in the first few months of 2022 — thanks to their “fair poker gaming technology.”
“We can clearly say that fair gaming is a main focus of ours going forward. We recently revealed that in the past year, we confiscated and reimbursed $300K from fraudulent behavior that was detected by our team. Moving forward, we aim to keep investing heavily in order to continue to ensure a safe playing ground for our players,” Berkovich concluded.
The exclusive interview given to Poker Industry PRO followed from 888’s wide-ranging RG interview that they gave to Poker Shield earlier this month. 888 said that their AI-powered Control Centre helps customers make empowered decisions regarding how much time and money they spend on the site.
888 is not the only operator to tackle bot accounts. partypoker was one of the first operators to openly report how many fraudulent accounts they were shutting down every month. GGPoker is also taking a firm stance on shutting down accounts of those people using RTAs.
In October of last year, GGPoker announced it had closed 40 accounts and compensated thousands of affected players with a share of $1.175 million confiscated funds.
At that time, GGPoker also announced that a “community-focused reporting system to expedite the removal of cheaters” would allow players to report any suspicious activity during gameplay through the Hand History page or via Pokercraft, GGPoker’s built-in tracking tool.
In 2020, PokerStars also announced they were cracking down on fraudulent accounts and reported it had confiscated $1.87 million which it had paid back to players effected by these dummy accounts. In recent years, PokerStars has shied away from reporting these numbers, whereas partypoker and 888 continue to do so.