Poker Scams Guide: How not to get Stung by Cheaters and Scammers?

Poker Scams Explained

Cheating in a game of casual poker when playing with friends or family is quite common and is a lot of fun. However, when the tables are turned against you and in a professional poker setting or casinos, it is quite alarming. So how do you look out for poker scams out there, which are all set to cheat you out of the winning pot? What are the warning bells you must be very attuned to?

In this guide, we have outlined all that you need to watch out for to protect yourself from poker scammers and cheaters. Learn how they do it, identify the tell signs, because it is your money, which is at stake.

An Introduction to Poker Scams

Poker scams are a shady business, which highlights the gloomy side of the world of poker. While it is not easier to get away with a scam, scammers still succeed. Nevertheless, scammers majorly are players who know all about the game to cheat the game itself. Such scammers employ every trick, which is often unethical, but oftentimes allowed, as they are within the law.

Poker is an interesting, skill-based game of cards, which partially relies on chance. In fact, it is one of the means of earning big bucks when you know the in and out of the poker variant. The bottom line is poker scams bring out the murkier side of the game. It is, thus, imperative to learn all the signs, cheats, and tricks to avoid getting stung in poker scams.

Here are some of the signs, warnings, and tips, which you must watch out for before, during, and after the game of poker.

How to be aware of Poker Scams?

Consider the poker table before putting your money on the line: Poker tables often earn certain reputations, whether good or bad. You can always consider these as the key indicators that reflect the authenticity of the game. Make sure to always pick tables with dealers who have garnered a good reputation.

Marked cards in private games: We often advise players to avoid private games as there is no clear indication of reputation. While this may be true, there is also the question of marked cards. Most often, private games leave a lot of scopes for your opponents to identify the marked cards to use them against you. Thus, it is vital to ask for a new pack of cards to avoid the poker scam of marked cards.

Look out for hidden chips: Typically, as a rule, the higher denomination chips must be visible. However, not all players follow this rule. And, when such players conceal their higher denomination, you will certainly be tempted to go all-in without having a clear picture of the value of your opponent’s stack. Thus, always make sure to ask or know how much is in your opponents’ stack.

Scammers in Poker

While the players get away with scams, there are also instances involving poker sites. One such poker scam involving the Full Tilt poker site witnessed a scam of a whopping $440 million. Another instance reported involved $50 million scammed by the Absolute Poker site.

Instances involving players who have gotten away with poker cheats are also many. However, we have described an event that happened in 2011, involving a clubhouse in Cannes.

Biggest Poker Scams

The poker scam of 2011 is considered to be one of the biggest poker scams. The poker scam involved four players who employed some of the smartest and unthinkable gambling tricks like purposeful exertion, imaginative defrauding, among others in the game of stud poker.

In fact, the players used imperceptible ink to mark the cards and used special contact lenses to look out for these marks.

While the players were able to win $84,000 on their first con, the same casino was able to catch the scammers when they attempted the same practice for the second time.

Poker Scams: How not to get Stung?

Poker scams are not only a common occurrence online, but also in land-based casinos. While there are cases where the casinos were also duped, it is often wise to be mindful of your opponents.

It is often crucial to not make snap decisions when you are lost in the moment. Always be mindful of all the actions made before you before and during the game. If you are uncertain of any move made that you failed to observe, make it a point to verify it with the dealer.

One of the unethical poker cheats is collusion between players. While collusion is hard to detect, if you witness a pattern where the scammer is playing at the same table or being over-friendly, immediately report your concern to the casino.


Poker scams are a part of the game of poker, and it is up to the poker players to identify the scammers for protection from poker cheats. The trick lies in understanding the poker scams to learn how not to get stung in the game of poker.

Michael Chen
Michael Chen joined as an executive editor. He is a graduate in Journalism and has a deep interest in the best online casino sites and games. He is an avid enthusiast in music.

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