Online poker leaderboards are great fun, but you need to watch out for players who try to game the system. It appears that some people on partypoker did just that, but according to partypoker partner and founder of the Dusk Til Dawn poker club, Rob Yong, the offenders have been caught and kicked to the curb.
On Monday, May 3, Yong put out a tweet announcing that a number of players on the leaderboard have been banned for life for cheating. In an attached video, he explained that the cheaters did things like multi-accounting and recruiting friends to play on their accounts.
He did not go into detail, but it is not hard to figure out how those two methods would help somebody. By multi-accounting, a person could be logged into more than one account at the same time and, in turn, claim more than one spot on a leaderboard. Thus, that person earns more prizes than they would playing on a single account, as they are supposed to.
Teaming up with friends is a way to extend one’s play on a single account. We are all humans and therefore do not have the ability to play around the clock. We get tired. We need to sleep. It sounds like some players handed off their account to friends who kept playing for them when the account owner could not. The play wouldn’t have to be 24/7 – that would be way too easy to spot – but perhaps instead of playing for 10 hours, someone got a friend to keep playing on their account for another four hours, all the while racking up leaderboard points.
Yong said he looked at the numbers with Juha, partypoker’s Head of Risk. They confiscated the cheaters’ funds and redistributed them to the rightful leaderboard winners.
“The message from party is yes, we want to reward players for supporting the site, but the strong message is, unequivocally, if you step out of line, try and cheat, we’re onto you. Juha is watching you like a hawk. Every winner’s play on every leaderboard is interrogated by his team. You will get caught if you’re up to no good and you’ll be banned for life.”
Yong added that he wishes they could publish the names of the cheaters – presumably so that they would get blacklisted in the online poker world – but he said that legally, they can’t.
He did say that he at least respected the offending parties for admitting to cheating once they were caught.
Yong’s announcement also included a confirmation that the cash game leaderboard competition has been extended to May. There are 16 different leaderboards, eight each for Hold’em and Omaha, divided by buy-in tiers. The top loyalty points earners on the leaderboards will earn a share of $250,000 in weekly prizes. Doing the math, that means that partypoker is giving away $1 million in prizes this month.