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Is it possible for an opponent to see my hold cards?  0   
I've often read blogs and forum post that state if anyone has a program which would allow opponents to see there hold cards they'ld be nutz to let anyone know. Makes sense to me.
Others say that it is impossible and talk about encryption and security.

How let me tell you how easy it might be. I worked in telephony and data communication for 40 years and have some knowledge of how it can be done. Many people are aware of how the Internet works. Like a giant amazon river filled with marbles data flows endlessly to subscribers. Each marble is a packet containing information and an IP address. When you surf the Internet you're sending marbles out to serves. These marbles are request that the server identifies by its specific IP address. Your marble (request) also has your IP address attached which the server sends with its response. Your computer is like a spider monitoring the web and reacts when a marbles (packet)containing its IP address is detected. It responds by excepting that data while ignoring all marbles (packets) with different IP addresses. The servers used by online gambling sites use your IP address to sent data to your computer. Their software reacts to reveal your hold cards to you and so on.

Now if I know your IP address ( which I can get if you say... visit my web site,... respond to my email,...post in forums,...or do anything that takes you to my server or interact with my computer. I only need to know what poker sites your using and your screen name so I can find you.Then I can monitor the data that is streaming to your IP address. Now I can dissect my on uploaded version of the gambling sites software to find the image files which contain each card in say C:/ all users/programs/"XXX"poker/ bla/bla/images... When I see that file name on the data sent to your IP address I know what your holding. Get the picture. Oh, and on most poker sites I can add you to a friends list allowing me to find you when your in a room or tourney.

Someone with deep pockets could take it a step further and tap the T1, and fiber lines at their source and mine all the information coming off the gambling sites servers. This would give them all that information when anyone logs on and plays.

So Gamblers BeWare. Aww crap!

Edited by Not2Bryte (30 April 2011 @ 16:46 GMT)


     
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suppose anything is possible in this day of age. however there is alot of safe guards so wouldn't say it wouldn't be a long scam.

     
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Of course it's possible, you've got quite big experiance, but everyone who plans to become programmer or work with computers (not on the level of typing words in Word or numbers in Excel...) should know that. But I'd say it's not so easy. In theory it seems to be simple, but only when it comes to theory. Poker software isn't simple one, every big room is secured very well (I don't know if it's true with small ones). In case of PokerStars or FTP I think it could - or should - take days or at least several hoursbefore you can see a hand which was dealt those X hours ago. I'm not sure if there's currently a computer on Earth which could do it in real time, of course I don't know in theory, granted that poker rooms are as secure as I bet they are Blink

     
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Thanks for your response.
As to the security developed by all the Poker sites large are small.

When you upload their software, you are uploading the means of decryption. The Internet is like a public super highway the only security on it is encryption. Where this works great to keeping John Q public from accessing Bank of America's private domain and allows businesses to interact privately between branches. The only security public servers have is to prevent hackers from getting to the private side of their data. The games themselves and the software you use to play on them ARE NOT SECURE AT ALL. Their sitting in the highway. You can't share your user name or the name of the sites you play on with anyone that can see your IP address. And lets pray no one is mining the source.

I love online poker an feel secure because I'm a very small fish. You know "POT ODDs". A shark would have to spend more calories to catch me then it will get when it eats me.

     
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I'm not a computer programmer or expert but assuming everything you say is as simple as you say it is there are still flaws in what you say.
Firstly you would need the IP address of several players at your table. It would be very odd if you were only involved in hands with certain players or if you followed players around the site. If you have a 100% showdown rate against a player it would also look odd. It has been established many times that cheating goes on in poker in ways much easier than this such as collusion but this is why sites monitor suspicious behaviour and investigate your hand history, which is bound to look odd if you can see hole cards.
Secondly connecting IP addresses with certain players is not easy. I was under the impression your IP address can change but even if IP address is fixed for your computer the cheat would still need you to email or post your poker id on their site. And presumably they would need a way to program their computer to match IP address with player everytime they were on the same table.
Now I don't believe it is that easy to hack information sent to someone else but if it is I would imagine the sites would encrypt it somehow. So I'm not so worried about this but at least what you say seems credible and not complete rubbish.

     
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Yes, and that's what I mean @Not2Bryte. I don't mean that you can't get information about my hole cards. I'm just saying, that IMO it's almost impossible to decrypt this information in real time to make it actually worth something - you don't need to see hole cards 3-4 minutes later, you need them in real time or it'll be complete worthless.

@awood88 - well, if you'd make a site like BRM (scam of course) you can easily get IP's and all the stuff that @Not2Bryte is talking about. And to follow some people by the site - why not? Also you have to know how to cheat, if I'd have such an information I would try to make it look real and lose some small pots on showdown and my rate wouldn't be 100% Blink But you are also right in other cases. It's not complete rubbish, it's possible, but IMO only in theory.

     
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Posted by awood88:
I'm not a computer programmer or expert but assuming everything you say is as simple as you say it is there are still flaws in what you say.
Firstly you would need the IP address of several players at your table. It would be very odd if you were only involved in hands with certain players or if you followed players around the site. If you have a 100% showdown rate against a player it would also look odd. It has been established many times that cheating goes on in poker in ways much easier than this such as collusion but this is why sites monitor suspicious behaviour and investigate your hand history, which is bound to look odd if you can see hole cards.
Secondly connecting IP addresses with certain players is not easy. I was under the impression your IP address can change but even if IP address is fixed for your computer the cheat would still need you to email or post your poker id on their site. And presumably they would need a way to program their computer to match IP address with player everytime they were on the same table.
Now I don't believe it is that easy to hack information sent to someone else but if it is I would imagine the sites would encrypt it somehow. So I'm not so worried about this but at least what you say seems credible and not complete rubbish.


I was thinking that Awood, am sure the sites do monitor players patterns and asu said i am sure if a player has inordinately high win rate against certain players when the rate of that player against every other player the play is average they would soon start monitoring said player and eventually catch and prosecute and refund those players who fell victim, as with the incident with Pot Ripper at Ulitmate bet and the the 2 chinese scams at Pokerstars they were all discovered in the end and refunds etc were duly done.

I am in no way in the mind that online poker is 100% secure but as Not2Bryte states you can definetley reduce the chances of falling foul to any online crime regarding poker never dislose any info sites yoiu play at usernames etc etc etc..
Smile Big Smile

     
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If i ever would come across the opportunity where i would be able to see my opponents hole cards i would take one and big win. For example the sunday million and i would never visit Pokerstars again Blink

Not like potripper who was calling the opponents all in on river with 7 high when his opponent was holding 6 high ... what a fool. Big Smile

     
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Posted by Not2Bryte:
I've often read blogs and forum post that state if anyone has a program which would allow opponents to see there hold cards they'ld be nutz to let anyone know. Makes sense to me.
Others say that it is impossible and talk about encryption and security.

How let me tell you how easy it might be. I worked in telephony and data communication for 40 years and have some knowledge of how it can be done. Many people are aware of how the Internet works. Like a giant amazon river filled with marbles data flows endlessly to subscribers. Each marble is a packet containing information and an IP address. When you surf the Internet you're sending marbles out to serves. These marbles are request that the server identifies by its specific IP address. Your marble (request) also has your IP address attached which the server sends with its response. Your computer is like a spider monitoring the web and reacts when a marbles (packet)containing its IP address is detected. It responds by excepting that data while ignoring all marbles (packets) with different IP addresses. The servers used by online gambling sites use your IP address to sent data to your computer. Their software reacts to reveal your hold cards to you and so on.

Now if I know your IP address ( which I can get if you say... visit my web site,... respond to my email,...post in forums,...or do anything that takes you to my server or interact with my computer. I only need to know what poker sites your using and your screen name so I can find you.Then I can monitor the data that is streaming to your IP address. Now I can dissect my on uploaded version of the gambling sites software to find the image files which contain each card in say C:/ all users/programs/"XXX"poker/ bla/bla/images... When I see that file name on the data sent to your IP address I know what your holding. Get the picture. Oh, and on most poker sites I can add you to a friends list allowing me to find you when your in a room or tourney.

Someone with deep pockets could take it a step further and tap the T1, and fiber lines at their source and mine all the information coming off the gambling sites servers. This would give them all that information when anyone logs on and plays.

So Gamblers BeWare. Aww crap!


The former president of Absolute Poker had a program that did this. After he left the site, he and some friends played the ring tables and took over $3 million. Yes that's right, and he was caught. But this was the first big online poker scam. Absolute had to give all that money back to the people who lost it because of cheating, why they ARE NOT part of the big 3 poker sites like the US gov likes to claim....

     
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Posted by Davoodoo:
If i ever would come across the opportunity where i would be able to see my opponents hole cards i would take one and big win. For example the sunday million and i would never visit Pokerstars again Blink

Not like potripper who was calling the opponents all in on river with 7 high when his opponent was holding 6 high ... what a fool. Big Smile

Thumbs Up
thats the key if you wanna commit fraud Big Smile

i dont think anyone could notice it only "by your play" if your smart enough and not greedy - no matter how much or often they check your HH. they simply cant..
potripper has been very very stupid to be honest. he could have done that for many more years without any suspicion.
who says you have to win every single hand? just win the big pots here and there...and most important = lose some ! but a minimum.
guess most of us it doesnt concern, but if i was playin high limits i would watch who im playing.

     
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Agree with above, usually scams like this involve someone on the inside who is able to more easily put these things into practice.

I imagine hands are automatically reviewed for suspicious patterns like the ones described and flagge for investigation.

Did you say that the poker data isnt encrypted? I'd definitely need to see proof of that before I believe it, in fact I'll email the site and ask them. If it is, then as metioned above, the cost to decode the datawill be greater than the profits, making it not worth doing.

     
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You make it sound feasible, but it couldn't happen. You could find my IP address and even find a player on line, but if that player is online you can not use tthe same profile name to the site in which a player was on simutaneously. The encryptions could not be duplicated to where a player and another individual (the hacker) could look at the same cards, at the same time, in the same game. By far from being smart, but just don't have me sold on your analysis. I do agree if someone from the inside was involved that something could potentially be capable of monitoring/tracking a player. If another player was at the same table at the same time there could be some possible manipulations, but timing/correlating would need to be controlled from an insider.

Just a dumb farmer's opinion though!

     
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I hear very reasonable arguments why it couden't happen, but what you
say does makes sense, Not2Bryte. And with so much experience i take what
your saying serious. But i agree with other mobsters that it would be difficult
and maybe too timeconsuming to accomplish. But like BMW man i do remember
the big Absolute poker scandal, so... Cool

     
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Thank you all for your responses. I've read them and as I suspected; the most brilliant minds in the world are sitting across the poker tables from me. This helps explain why I can't seem to win consistently.

I'm sure poker data is encrypted when it leaves the site servers. But the decryption algorithm is in the software we all downloaded to play on these sites. Ergo, you have it on your computer now.
Potripper had a backdoor he used to reach a secure level it the server program. ( A maintenance porthole) This back door was put there by the software developers and all the sites have them. Their purpose is to allow the developers and maintenance personnel to access secure areas of their programs remotely. If a hacker beat their security measures he or she would still be looking at heavily encrypted data (strange character in total disarray(The Matrix)) without the encryption algorithms and a software platform to make it legible. Potripper had all this. He paid off or colluded with one of the software developers . And as I recall... He was discovered and exposed not by site personnel mining data on billions of hands played, but by a player using poker manager or something like it that compiles data on your opponents. I haven't researched the PS story but would be surprised if PS personnel weeded out any hackers themselves. It wouldn't be cost effective to pay people to monitor every hand played so the best we can hope for are people querying data bases and thinking out of the box to constantly develop new queries. People willing to tax their brain trying to decipher the results and recognize patterns a cheater might leave behind. This is a rigorous task and unlikely to attract people with the brains required to do it. It's rumored if you succeed it beating their system you will not be prosecuted at all. You'll receive a job offer from them.
So use your Poker Manager or other data mining software and learn how to read it. Not just to improve your game but to see unlikely statistic on opponents. It might be telling you something.
As to the thought that reading the data sent to your IP address would take some time( minutes, hours,etc.) think about it. My computer can do it just as fast as yours can. Faster if I have more bandwidth.
Please email this information as a question to the site providers. Ask them how secure the data sent to their subscribers is once it leaves their servers. I'd love find out I'mNot2Bryte and my thinking is so far off I should seek professional help. I'll pass that on to my shrink (See I am Crazy now help me get my SSI benefits). LOL.

In summary I am not saying your being riped off in this way. I'm not saying you aren't either. I dreamed all this up based solely on my knowledge as a technician and merely offer it as food for thought. But if I can conceive this simple plan, their are far more brilliant minds than mine out there trying to ripe us off. So poker strategy is not limited to the tables it must be considered at all turns. Even when we are not logged on. I hope I've stirred the gray matter a little and you enjoyed following the posting as much as I enjoyed writing it.

See you at the tables.
I'mNot2Bryte
Thumbs Down Thumbs Up

     
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I enjoyed it, i'm very interested in technical info about internet and poker.
Thx and gl Cool

     
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OP: It's really not as simple as you describe.

Firstly: IP addresses: Yes, when you send an email, respond on a forum etc - your IP address is logged. However this is NOT peer-peer which means your peers cannot see this information. For example, you do NOT know my IP address, just because you know my bankrollmob screen name. (I challenge you to tell me my IP). Bankrollmob knows it.. This much is true - but you do not.

So for starters - getting somebodies IP is a lot more difficult than you make it sound - you need to establish a peer-peer connection with them in order for your computer to log it. Otherwise you need to be running the server (such as the BRM forum server) yourself - or have access to the log.

Next encryption: There are many ways for data encryption to work, using public and private keys etc. The algorithm in the client software itself isn't enough. You need to feed the KEY AND the encrypted data into the algorithm, not just the encrypted information. Generally there is a shared key that is only released once a certain security hand shake is complete.

Basically - what you would need to do would be to actually sit near somebodies wi-fi network - hack into their LAN - then sniff out the actual packets like that and insert a fake security certificate into the network that would then place you in-between the client software and the poker room. Even then, the experience/skill required to do this would be incredible and hacking into the latest wi-fi security protocols is very difficult.

And even if you manage ANY of this - you only have access to one opponents hole cards anyway.. Which would help a lot if you were HU - but not really great in a big MTT or anything.

I think whilst some of what you are saying is technically feasible - most of it would be incredibly difficult as the measures taken against this kind of behavior are quite impressive and you're oversimplification of how encryption works etc really doesn't do justice to how good some of these security measures actually are.

     
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this is getting creepy now.....

     
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Thats a really good question but the answer is no with one single exception, if the player has acces to the poker platform servers. This happend with Ultimate Bet a couple of years ago, people that worked at the Ultimate Bet servers hacked them and made an account and played from the Ultimate Bet server building making millions very easily. But they had physical acces to the poker platform servers.
Since then the software on all poker platforms significantly upgraded and now for a remote user it's impossible to see their opponents hole cards because the package of data that contains the information of your opponents hole cards it's sent to your personal computer only at showdown, till then only the data package that contains your own cards it's sent to your computer. Thats why you need acces to the platform servers to do this scam.

     
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It happend before, so it can happen again. A cheater can have access to the server (UB and Absolute scandals) or he can plant a spy program on the PC of his victim (this happend to Lodden).

     
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surely online poker has its risks, being hacked into is one
its hard to get into poker sites's server and steal info from there unless you have an inside man. regarding ip i read somewhere that ppl can do get to knw ur hole cards if they hack into ur system from same network/ internet provider (?) like wht jess said. but its really hard for some1 to do that if u keep ur nicknames and identity secret and your security upto date . Blink

     
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