There are numerous articles out there on the world of poker, and specifically on cheating at said game, so why do we need another one telling us what is and what isn't going on in this underground world? The main reason is that the majority of information out there on cheating at cards is wrong, plain and simple. They tell you that cheating doesn't occur that much or that cheating occurs all the time, that cheating is easy or cheating is hard, all of which are incorrect. The only correct answer is: it depends. Cheating can be easy or hard, depending on where you are playing and who you are playing with. If you are playing in the World Series, then it would be infinitely harder to cheat than if you are playing with your friends in your kitchen. See cheating is very hard to prevent and even harder to catch. But with a better understanding of how a cheat works, you will be able to better protect yourself.
Misconception #1 – Cheaters are bad poker players
The biggest misconception is that cheaters are bad poker players. The logic behind this is that because they are cheating, they have never taken the time to really learn the ins and outs of the game. This is wildly untrue. Most card cheats are way better at poker than you will ever be. They have to be. A card cheat cannot cheat every hand, and most of the time cheating will only occur once per game. That's not once per hand, but once per game. I
n ten hours of playing, a cheat may only use his skills once or twice to avoid getting caught, and he may actually be seen to lose most of the hands because he knows that when playing, money matters. A cheat will take down the big pots and lose the small ones to put forth the apperance of losing all night, but being able to walk away with all the chips.
Misconception #2 – It is hard to cheat
Another huge misconception is that it is very hard to cheat at poker. If you are wanting to manipulate the cards in any way, then yes, cheating will take some time and practice, but most cheats that you will run into are cheats of opportunity, that is cheats who don't actively cheat. These people cheat in ways that they themselves may not even consider cheating, ways like seeing the bottom card on the shuffle or shuffle tracking, both of which can be done without any skill. These are the people who, when they see someone else's hand, will keep that information quietly to themselves.
The hardest part about this is knowing how to use your knowledge. If you see a Ten of Spades and a Queen of Spades on the bottom of the deck, you know a few things: First, there is one less ten and queen in play, and thus if you are holding a ten or queen then you are at a disadvantage. Also you know there are two fewer spades, making a flush much less likely. Finally, you know that you cannot make a royal flush or high straight flush in spades. This is enough information for the average player to use to their advantage, even without knowing the exact odds of everything.
Misconception #3 – Cheaters are morally bankrupt/ cheaters are thieves
This misconception is simply altogether wrong. Many people see cheating as immoral, and as such tag those who cheat as morally bankrupt. But having one part of who you are slightly off the moral balance does not mean that you don't have morals. And all of this is assuming that cheating is immoral to begin with. People will bemoan cheaters saying that they don't respect anyone and that they are petty thieves, but what other thief can you watch take your money with a smile on his face and you never even know about it? You are after all gambling, and more likely than not you are expecting to lose that money anyway.
So, with a few of the misconceptions out there for you to think about maybe you will figure out the motive behind cheating. For some it is money, for other adventure, but for each cheat it is different. So try to step into the shoes of a cheat next time you plan a card game