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  1. #1
    thepokerkeep's Avatar
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    Exclamation Superuser account scandal at Absolute Poker

    Hey all,

    Just a heads up to all Absolute Poker affiliates and players.
    It appears that two plus two Forums has uncovered a deep running scam where an Absolute Poker insider has been using a superuser account to cheat players out of thousands of dollars in ring games and tournaments.

    I know these are very serious allegations and I spent most of yesterday following the investigation as the members of two plus two and pocket fives proceeded to make their case.

    I now believe that there is just way too much evidence to ignore! I have included links to the two sites who have done such an amazing job of uncovering this scam.

    I have also begun the task of removing all Absolute banners from my site and forum. It's up to Absolute to prove they are in the clear and that there is no way this can ever happen again.

    I apologize if this is posted in the wrong section - it seemed like the most appropriate place.

    http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/sh...fpart=all&vc=1

    http://www.pocketfives.com/3D299A68-...8FD0A29A2.aspx
    Terry - The Pokerkeep
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  2. #2
    ck8795 is offline Private Member
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    I am replying for two reasons,

    First is you do not know if this is legit or not. Accusations and facts are two seperate things and right now it is still accusations. Of course it doesnt look good but I think for the most part everyone is still at the wait and see how this plays out.

    Second by the way you have worded it you have already found them guilty and are suggesting that people remove thier marketing for the room.

    I think in this case people should not be quick to pass judgement just yet in both thier decsions or reactions to what is going on. Yes its bad but it will be looked into.

    Absolute released a statement and the entire situation is being discussed on PAW. Not sure Micheal or City guard if I can post it but the amount of stuff everyone has been saying I could not possible sum up.

    Here is the AP statement which was sent out lastnight to 2+2

    I just received this email from Absolute, which contains (new?) information about a voluntary self-audit:

    Dear Corey,

    Absolute Poker Management wishes to inform the poker community of the following information in response to the most recent claims posted over the past 48 hours on the 2+2 and Pocket Fives forums wherein again it is alleged that some person or persons breached Absolute Poker’s redundant and varying levels of game client security. As was stated in Absolute Poker’s Official Response released on Friday October 12, 2007, Absolute Poker conducted an extensive investigation in response to the claims it was made aware of and received. The results of that investigation indicated that to the best of Absolute Poker’s knowledge, information and belief there was no security breach. Specifically, Absolute Poker’s internal investigation determined that it is impossible for any person, device, program, script or other means to see hole cards.

    Based on the most recent claims that Absolute Poker has been made aware of and at the request of some of our players and business partners, Absolute Poker has agreed to retain a widely acclaimed independent third party auditor, Gaming Associates, to conduct an independent audit of Absolute Poker’s security systems. Specifically, Absolute Poker has requested that Gaming Associates conduct a thorough and extensive review of Absolute Poker’s practices and security systems to determine whether it is possible for any person, device, program, script or other means to see hole cards thereby gaining an unfair advantage. (http://www.gamingassociates.com)

    Absolute Poker has agreed to fully cooperate with Gaming Associates and its investigative team and to provide the above with unfettered access to all systems, protocols and databases at Absolute Poker worldwide. Absolute Poker has also agreed to allow Gaming Associate’s final report to be made available to Pocket Fives and Bluff Media for their review.

    With respect to the claims that Scott Tom, a former Member of Team Absolute Poker, is in anyway involved in wrong-doing, Absolute Poker has requested a formal investigation into that matter as well. Mr. Tom has not been involved with Absolute Poker for over a year and to the best of our knowledge, information and belief has not had access to any of Absolute Poker’s systems, databases or information.

    Absolute Poker reserves the right to pursue any and all remedies whether in law or equitable which may procure to it as a result of any unlawful and injurious actions taken by any individuals who may have falsified any information, documents, files, or have by other means attempted to disparage and/or harm Absolute Poker, its Players, its current or former management, employees, business partners or affiliates.

    Absolute Poker shall bear all expenses related to such investigation and is eager to learn about Gaming Associate’s findings. Absolute Poker highly values and intends to protect its players, shareholders, business partners, and affiliates.

    Absolute Poker Management
    BTW no I do not promote AP,
    Last edited by ck8795; 17 October 2007 at 12:43 pm.

  3. #3
    thepokerkeep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaus View Post
    I am replying for two reasons,

    First is you do not know if this is legit or not. Accusations and facts are two seperate things and right now it is still accusations. Of course it doesnt look good but I think for the most part everyone is still at the wait and see how this plays out.

    Second by the way you have worded it you have already found them guilty and are suggesting that people remove thier marketing for the room.

    I think in this case people should not be quick to pass judgement just yet in both thier decsions or reactions to what is going on. Yes its bad but it will be looked into.

    Absolute released a statement and the entire situation is being discussed on PAW. Not sure Micheal or City guard if I can post it but the amount of stuff everyone has been saying I could not possible sum up.

    Here is the AP statement which was sent out lastnight to 2+2

    BTW no I do not promote AP,
    Thanks for your reply.

    I would like to clarify some of your comments though.

    First, I have not found them guilty. I clearly state there are allegations about cheating.

    Second, I have studied the hand histories and the video and my conclusion as an experienced poker player are that yes, this was definitely some form of cheating. No one can be that lucky! He never made one misplay during the entire tournament.

    Third, there is evidence linking more than one Absolute insider to the tournament in question.

    Fourth, as a webmaster who takes the gaming industry seriously, I feel it is in my best interest and the best interest of my readers/members to err on the side of caution. So yes, in this case I must treat Absolute as though they are guilty until proven innocent. As an Absolute affiliate, this is my bread and butter that I'm cutting off here so you can bet your a** that the decision was not an easy one for me. However, if I stood by and did nothing and one or more of my members got swindled as a result, I'd feel a whole lot worse.

    Fifth, I definitely am suggesting that other affiliates take action against Absolute. the only way they will ever come clean is if we hurt them in the wallet. The email you have quoted in your post is the first time Absolute has even acknowledged that there may actually be a cheater in their midst. This email was only issued after dozens of concerned affiliates emailed them looking for a statement.

    In closing, there are many other affiliate sites following my lead. It seems that this story is going to hit the mainstream media today or tomorrow, it isn't going away!
    Terry - The Pokerkeep
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  4. #4
    ck8795 is offline Private Member
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    The story is already in the media which I think is going to be a really bad thing in a few days, you can look at the New York Times Blog. I seen the first one yesterday and today's was his follow up which has become a very hot topic of interest among readers and players.

    I take this seriously to but I also think that alot of people are really adding to this without full knowledge of whats going on besides the posts on the forums. yes there are threads and yes that video is there but can you honestly say that this is it....thats all the evidence needed. There are still alot of questions as to what has happened and how and if

    My main problem with your post is this
    deep running scam where an Absolute Poker insider
    IMO I cant see how anyone at this point can say for certain without a doubt that its an AP insider...not yet

    Already there has been rumored that a second person is being named instead of the first alleged user of that account.

    As far as affiliates who rely or depend on AP, I couldnt even begin to imagine what you are going through or the difficult decsion you will have to make to pull your income or not.

    I do agree with you in regards to AP's team. A release should have been sent immediatly, considering the slack they had the last round..you would think they would have learned thier lesson.

  5. #5
    thepokerkeep's Avatar
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    Default

    I agree with you that this will be bad for the online poker industry in the short term. But, in the end, isn't it better to out the perpetrators of such a serious scam and show the world that someone is policing the industry. If we don't make this public and get the word out to the main stream media, Absolute will just continue to sweep it under the rug as they have been doing for the past month or so. The evidence is pretty overwhelming that there is one or more Absolute insiders involved. Scott Tom - former owner of Absolute and AJ Green - former executive of Absolute and presently with nine.com, have been implicated through the superuser account user IP and the hand history files where the IP addresses were disclosed.

    I'd like to see a rep from Absolute come onto this forum or 2+2 and discuss the allegations openly.

    Here is something that was recently posted on 2+2 by member Dan Druff:


    "Here's what a lot of you have been waiting for... I got that phone call from AP.

    But before I go into that, I need to post an important retraction to something I said earlier. I mentioned at one point that 1994 WSOP Champion Russ Hamilton owns Absolute Poker, and was responsible for the AP/UB purchase last year. THIS IS FALSE. I was unfortunatley given bad information about Russ by a source that is usually reliable. I apologize to Mr. Hamilton and to anyone who was misled by that statement. In fact, I would appreciate if the mods could remove that short post of mine (in the previous AP cheating thread), as I now believe it to be untrue.

    Now, onto the AP phone call....

    Yesterday, I spoke to AP and told them I wasn't going to be playing there until this matter was resolved to my satisfaction. Given that I have been one of their most active players over the past 2 years, they became concerned about my departure, and promised me a phone call from one of their managers.

    Indeed, I received a phone call from Roger, who I have spoken to before concerning other matters in the past. At first, he attempted to deny that a superuser exists. I stopped him and told him everything I knew -- basically a rehash of all that has been posted here over the past month. He acknowledged hearing this information before, and said he has been following all of the 2+2 threads about the situation. I then went on to tell him the following...

    There is too much evidence out there at this point for AP to be able to deny that this occurred. AP's continuing to make statments like the two we've seen serve only to make people angry and frustrated. Nobody here is interested in reading carefully-prepared corporate statements about how nothing nefarious occurred. There are a lot of really smart people on 2+2, and none of us will buy it in the face of everything else we know. What we have all been looking for are truthful and plausible answers to all of our questions.

    I asked Roger to answer the following questions for me:

    1) How do they explain the "perfect" play of POTRIPPER and the other accused cheaters, if there is no superuser involved?

    2) What is the story with account 363?

    3) What were the IP addresses of GRAYCAT, STEAMROLLER, DOUBLEDRAG, and POTRIPPER? Did they match their listed geographic locations? Were any in Costa Rica?

    4) Where were SUPERCARDM55 and REYMNALDO (chip dump recipients) located? Did they cash out? Are they from Costa Rica?

    5) What is the relationship between the 4 suspected cheaters and those accounts they dumped to?

    6) Have you spoken on the phone to GRAYCAT, STEAMROLLER, POTRIPPER, and DOUBLEDRAG? What did they say? How did they explain the chip dumping? Did they admit to playing on those accounts?

    Roger took notes on all of my questions. He promised to get answers for me later today.

    Then he asked one question that sounded promising -- the first thing I've heard from an AP employee that gives me hope. He asked me if the players would be satisfied if we were to simply be returned the money that we lost to GRAYCAT, STEAMROLLER, POTRIPPER, and DOUBLEDRAG. Keeping in mind that I was probably speaking for a lot of the people involved, I answered the following:

    Our biggest problem is the fact that we were cheated out of a lot of money -- about $700,000 in preliminary estimates. Our other big problem is the fact that we are being stonewalled about the situation and are not being dealt with honestly. It's frustrating to know that the high-limit AP community was cheated out of nearly a million dollars. It's arugably more frustrating for Absolute to deny that it happened, especially given all that has come out. If everyone affected could be compensated, it would be a HUGE step in the right direction, as it would make it clear to everyone that AP is interested in making the situation right.

    I told Roger that I understood AP's situation. I said that I realized that they're "damned if they do, damned if they don't", regarding owning up to the superuser situation. If they admit their games were compromised by an insider with access to hole cards, it will be a huge story and nobody will trust their games again. If they stick to their bogus claim that no cheating occurred, everyone will be angry and feel cheated, as the existing mountain of evidence clearly says otherwise.

    Roger was quick to agree with me, and in fact acted as if I hit upon something that he has been dealing with for a long time.

    "Exactly. We can't win either way," he said.

    I told him that I knew of a way that everyone could come out relatively happy.

    There's no doubt that chip-dumping occurred on a massive scale. Chip-dumping is very much against AP rules, and obviously anyone engaging in it in such huge amounts is up to something no-good. It's not like it was a case of me dumping to another known player as a means to trade chips between sites. These were completely unknown accounts dumping to one another, and never being seen again. Surely AP could not be blamed for confiscating the money belonging to these chip-dumpers. Therefore, if the money from these accounts could be returned to those they won it from, on the basis that the accounts were closed for chip dumping, this would be a way that AP could legitimately return the money to the victims without admitting that a superuser account exists. Basically, they'd just be confiscating money from shady accounts (based upon the chip-dumping) and returning it to where it originally came from (instead of just keeping it on AP). Nobody has to admit to a superuser. Nobody has to admit that cheating went down. The affected parties will have their money back. There's no ideal solution to this mess, but I feel that this is probably the closest we can get to it.

    Roger told me that my suggestion sounded reasonable, and that he would discuss it with other managers and the site owners. He promised to get back to me about everything by 3:00pm PDT.

    Before I ended the phone call, I reminded Roger that we're all sick of rhetoric and carefully-worded corporate statements. Nobody is going to be satisfied until this is actually taken care of, and flat denials that anything unjust occurred does not equate to taking care of it. I told him again that a return of the stolen money would be generally seen as a VERY positive step on AP's part."
    Terry - The Pokerkeep
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  7. #6
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    It's a two way street for affiliates. I went into more details today on the blog (here is the scoop). I feel like the investigation will show us all more details and also help clear up some of the accusations being tossed around like mad right now.

    The Conspiracy Theory is here at P5.
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    gregoryallan is offline Public Member
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    Default what??

    I just reviewed the first 5 hands of your evidence. The guy just appears to be a loose aggressive player. You can take a set of facts and make them appear to say anything you want. Show me someone from the inside operation of any casino or poker room state under oath how they cheat.
    The thread that i started to read was for a $10 tourney. Who is going to rob a small one if you are going to steal

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    gregoryallan is offline Public Member
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    Default or maybe running good

    This is a true story. About2 years ago I played poker online about 16-20 hours everyday. One day when I was running bad I had only about 2$ left in my account. I entered a freeroll at a prima poker site. I went allin everyhand no matter what i had. I won every hand .Over 70 hands in a row. People were steaming. When you run good you can run extremly good. THATS POKER

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    gregoryallan is offline Public Member
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    Default now i have read about 40 of the hands in your evidence

    The guy (potripper) plays like a scandinavian. He senses fear and he attacks. Just a very good player. He plays a loose aggressive style ..
    I suggest if you have never played this style of poker you should learn it. The loose aggressive style is great when you are running good and reading perfect. Try it out if for no other reason to better understand your opponets.
    I dont know how much experience you have.This guy appears to have been in the zone
    If you have a lot of experience playing poker and never been in the zone(reading your opponets perfectly) than you probably never will be in the zone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gregoryallan View Post
    The guy (potripper) plays like a scandinavian. He senses fear and he attacks. Just a very good player. He plays a loose aggressive style ..
    I suggest if you have never played this style of poker you should learn it. The loose aggressive style is great when you are running good and reading perfect. Try it out if for no other reason to better understand your opponets.
    I dont know how much experience you have.This guy appears to have been in the zone
    If you have a lot of experience playing poker and never been in the zone(reading your opponets perfectly) than you probably never will be in the zone.


    The hand history you're looking at is for a $1,000 buy-in tournament where there were many very good players registered. He played the entire tournament without making a single mistake. I think you need to look much closer at this!

    I've seen many instances of people crying "the game is rigged" after taking a bad beat, this is NOT one of them.

    Absolute has agreed to an audit and has begun discussions (negotiations?) with players who were allegedly cheated.

    For the record, I have plenty of experience playing poker, mainly in nl tournaments. The people at 2+2 who are doing the investigating have much more experience and play for very high stakes. Try reading the entire story. There is more evidence here than just a hand history....
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    I noticed that after i made my first post ($1000)
    I am telling you he is just a good player. I have had days where I played perfect poker.
    Betting patterns and just luck. That is being in the zone.

    I did not follow thew chip dumping. Was this in the same Tourney? If it was he made mistakes. . loosing chips to other players is not chip dumping .

    chip dumping is done with real money. You can play a hand push maybe $5000 preflop then fold to any bet. Better if is a large bet(it conceals the actions). This would be used to transfer money . If it happened repeatedly between the same two or three accounts it might mean something. This could also be friends that play against each other regularly.

    One thing I did find were4 inconsistencies of hand by hand analysis. This hand by hand is not evidence or anything close to it. It would be accepted in a court of law . Their are no facts to support your allegations.

    PLEASE BELIEVE ME . IAM NOT TAKING SIDES
    READ SOME OF MY POSTS IN GPWA ABOUT MICROGAMING REPORTS
    I BELIEVE THEIR NEEDS TO BE COMPL;ETE TRANSPERENCY IN THE TESTING OF ONLINE GAMING

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    Quote Originally Posted by gregoryallan View Post
    I noticed that after i made my first post ($1000)
    I am telling you he is just a good player. I have had days where I played perfect poker.
    Betting patterns and just luck. That is being in the zone.

    I did not follow thew chip dumping. Was this in the same Tourney? If it was he made mistakes. . loosing chips to other players is not chip dumping .

    chip dumping is done with real money. You can play a hand push maybe $5000 preflop then fold to any bet. Better if is a large bet(it conceals the actions). This would be used to transfer money . If it happened repeatedly between the same two or three accounts it might mean something. This could also be friends that play against each other regularly.

    One thing I did find were4 inconsistencies of hand by hand analysis. This hand by hand is not evidence or anything close to it. It would be accepted in a court of law . Their are no facts to support your allegations.

    PLEASE BELIEVE ME . IAM NOT TAKING SIDES
    READ SOME OF MY POSTS IN GPWA ABOUT MICROGAMING REPORTS
    I BELIEVE THEIR NEEDS TO BE COMPL;ETE TRANSPERENCY IN THE TESTING OF ONLINE GAMING

    I don't need a lesson in chip dumping, I understand the concept very well.

    The chip dumping allegations are in relation to moving the money to conspirator's accounts to expedite withdrawals due to the limits imposed by the house.
    The chip dumping was obviously done at cash (ring) tables.

    As for your theory that he was running hot (in the zone), there are dozens of professional players on 2+2 and pocket 5's (both leading poker forums) who have studied the hand history and totally believe this was a cheater. These players make their living playing poker!

    It appears that the main stream media has found enough interest in the story to pick it up. That was my goal all along, only with intense scrutiny, as will come from the major news networks, will the truth emerge.

    I agree with you 100% there needs to be transparency in the gaming industry. That is one of the reasons this should not be swept under the rug.

    Honestly, I hope there is some reasonable explanation for what has been uncovered (alleged). Unfortunately, I don't see a happy ending here.
    Terry - The Pokerkeep
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  14. #13
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    Default The Wizard of Odds weighs in on the debate....

    Here's a link to his blog post.
    Absolute Poker Investigation
    Terry - The Pokerkeep
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    Quote Originally Posted by thepokerkeep View Post
    . Unfortunately, I don't see a happy ending here.
    Hitting the media may be necessary obv AP wasn't taking the allegations seriously the first round.I dont have an impression either way. As far as anyone cheating I would much rather hear from KGC but I do think that this will be picked up as another example of why online gaming is bad....

    btw nice link for the blog post. One of the better breakdowns and theories I have read so far without jumping over to the countless pages at 2+2

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    Default Absolute to admit System was Compromised

    The full thread can be found here
    pocket fives
    or here
    twoplustwo

    So at least we will see the players who were cheated get some compensation and hopefully this will be wakeup call to the online gaming industry as a whole... make sure you get your house in order, the players are smarter than you thought.

    Anyone have any thoughts on ways to spin this in a positive manner for the industry?
    Terry - The Pokerkeep
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    ck8795 is offline Private Member
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    "Regulation"

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    I'd like to hear from Chipleader on this. The ramifications to their business is huge!
    I'd also like to hear from Ultimate Bet and VP 24/7 administration. They must be working like mad trying to figure out how to distance themselves from Absolute right now.
    The next few days will certainly be interesting for this business!
    Terry - The Pokerkeep
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  19. #18
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    Default Updated media coverage

    http://www.ktvn.com/Global/story.asp?S=7229673

    http://wizardofodds.com/software/absolutepoker.html

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21381022/

    ABC reports the Quebec Provincial Police have launched an investigation:
    http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/sto...3752500&page=1


    From Gambling911.com:

    Absolute Poker Admits "Internal Breach"

    Absolute Poker on Friday morning admitted an "internal breach" following accusations from the online poker community that a company "employee" had been able to see other players whole cards.

    An official from the company admitted the breach and that Absolute had only uncovered who the culprit was Thursday afternoon.

    "Players who were affected by this unfortunately situation will be paid in full," the official told Gambling911.com. "Furthermore, a third party investigation has already gotten underway and we will be inviting anyone from the online poker community who wants to take part in this investigation as a means of ensuring how committed we are to getting this matter resolved."

    No management personnel were involved in this incident, the company official relayed.

    "The person in question knew the internal system at Absolute Poker intimately. We want to ensure everybody that no person can hack into our system from the outside."

    Absolute Poker is working diligently to have this matter resolved.

    "We need to prove to the online poker community that this can never happen again," the official said.

    A company statement sent out to the public was expected by late afternoon Friday.

    ----

    Christopher Costigan, Gambling911.com Publisher

    Originally published October 19, 2007 10:59 am ET




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  20. #19
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by thepokerkeep View Post
    Anyone have any thoughts on ways to spin this in a positive manner for the industry?
    Quote Originally Posted by kaus View Post
    "Regulation"
    I'll second kaus response.

    The majority of poker or for that matter casino players are no longer mindless morons. IMHO unless an online venue is monitored 24/7 by a third party impartial regulatory body, there is always going to be doubts towards the validity and integrity of online gambling software in question.

    Anything other than land based where gambling is tangible there is always going to be doubts.

    Reiterating, Regulation is the only way that this combined industry can have a clean bill of health.



    Cheers



    Dave
    ---
    Do the right thing, even when no one is looking. It's called integrity.
    ---

    igaming affiliates rights - fairness for all iGaming affiliates

  21. #20
    gregoryallan is offline Public Member
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    Default i agree

    This is so True . I wrote earlier about microgaming reports. They cannot be trusted . No one seemed to agree with me.
    1. Testing of the rng's is not enough.
    2. Checking raw logs and balanceing the results against player accounts does nothing.

    We need independent testing.
    Testing must be anonymous , random and perfectly transparent.

    I have been working on this issue for two years.

    I made this point to Ecogra's mr. Andrew (random testing for payback percentage ) two years ago. Inviting Ecogra to develop a protocol for random testing of online casino games . This testing would be transparent . The estimated payback % undisputable .

    He eventually wrote me a reply. Andrew's posistion was clear. IT WAS NOT NECCESSARY . Ecogras requirements were enough.
    I will be sending out a press release monday . I have been working on the right time to announce a solution . I believe this will change the industry forever. This is a defining point in the history of gambling.

    GPWA is where I will announce what I have been working on for the last 2 years.

    Thank you all for your kindness,
    Greg Esry C.E.O. Globakl Gaming Media Inc.

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