History's Biggest Casino Cheats
Throughout the history of brick and mortar casinos, there have been ambitious players plotting and scheming to cheat the casino with increasingly inventive means. The list below constitutes some of our favourite casino cheats in history, each of whom had an audacious plan and one of them even got away with it.
Ronald Dale Harris
As a member of the Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB), computer programmer Ron Harris had first-hand access to many of the slot machines destined for Las Vegas casinos. After becoming disillusioned with the NGCB, Harris and an accomplice reprogrammed several slot machines turning the odds in their favour. The feat was achieved by editing source code in order to have the machines payout following a specific and reproducible input sequence. Harris made off with thousands of dollars and would have remained a free man had it not been for a second casino scam.
Another cheat who focused on slot machines, Nikrasch developed a computer chip that when inserted into a slot machine would trigger predictable payouts. However, Nikrasch was not an insider like Harris and, as a result, made use of confederates to block casino cameras as he opened the backs of machines, using a black market key, and inserted the modified computer chip. Amazingly, he amassed a staggering $6 million fortune before his greed got the best of him and authorities finally caught up with him. Did you know that Royal Vegas is one of the safest online casinos in Canada? Read more about our Security and Privacy and register a real money account now
Blackjack has been popularized as one of the most common games casino cheats target with card counting able to offer consistent reliably favourable odds. Marks, however, was not a player but rather a dealer. Using slight of hand and false shuffling techniques, he was able to ensure that confederates sitting at his table won. Unlike the others on this list, Marks was never caught and no one knows how much he made off with. What is known is that in the ultimate display of hubris, Marks released an autobiography detailing his crimes.
At Bally’s Park Place Casino Resort in Atlantic City McNeal stunned onlookers and casino staff alike beating the lottery game Keno and winning a $100,000 jackpot. Officials, however, quickly became suspicious of the win following McNeal's muted reaction to his sudden windfall. After insisting he was paid in cash and refusing to supply his ID, officials finally began to invistage McNeal and confronted him in his hotel room. In the room, officials found McNeal, detailed research on the random number generator the casino used for their keno games and Ronald Dale Harris. Both were arrested putting an end Harris' cheating days for good.