Last week, GGPoker published a blog post entitled “Battle Against Real-Time Assistance” in which they announced that the site has banned 40 players and issued a warning to another 40 players for the use of Real-Time Assistance (RTA) at its online poker tables.
13 out of the 40 accounts that were banned had their funds confiscated totaling to $1,175,305, an average of around $90,000 per account, while 27 accounts were banned with out their funds being confiscated.
“While there will always be deceitful individuals trying to cheat the game and steal from their fellow players, our Security Team continues to be on the cutting edge with regards to detection and protection and maintains a zero-tolerance policy to Real-Time Assistance,” GGPoker wrote in a blog post published last Wednesday.
GGPoker Completes Reimbursement to Affected Players
A GGPoker source has confirmed to pokerfuse that the reimbursement process has been fully completed and all players who were affected have been compensated directly to their accounts.
Pokerfuse has learned that a total of 4329 players were compensated by GGPoker, averaging out to $272 per account.
The refunds were distributed over the weekend, with some players confirming the compensation they had received on social media.
Emails in such cases of reimbursement sent to affected players state that they have received compensation “with regards to confiscated funds for the breach of provision ’4. Use of Real-Time Assistance.”
Furthermore, the email states that players that were caught using RTA have been permanently banned from playing on GGPoker network.
However, no players were named by the operator nor were details revealed such as which game types and stakes the cheating took place at or the method of detection that was used to catch the culprits, as the company believes doing so would reveal too much about how it detects cheaters.
Much like other operators, GGPoker’s policy is also not to comment on individual cases of cheating due to privacy reasons
The operator has also not revealed the details on how the refunds were calculated, but the site assures the public that they have made every effort to ensure that the funds have been distributed to affected players “as fairly as possible.”
Some players have reportedly received over $1500 as compensation while some have reported reimbursements as low as $40. Some of them also feel that the compensation is substantially less than the amount they lost to players accused of using RTA.
High Profile Fedor Kruse Case
The issue of real-time assistance rose to prominence with GGPoker in particular, taking the spotlight, following a high profile player capturing the attention of the poker community last month.
That accused player is a German high stakes cash game player Fedor Kruse, whose roommates alleged that he used RTA on GGPoker and PokerStars.
Real-Time Assistance or RTA tools advise players how to act in certain situations while at the tables. These tools could be in the form of simple charts or software “solvers” that use game-theory optimal (GTO) simulations to provide highly accurate and nuanced advice.
While the use of such prohibited tools is nothing new, nor is players being caught and banned, the controversy recently came to light as the result of accusations that Kruse had a connection to the GGPoker network.
In the past, Kruse apparently did have a connection to Natural8, one of the skins on the GGPoker network, but that connection appears to be in a tangential capacity with the skin having referred to Kruse as “a friend of Natural 8.” Kruse also appeared with a yellow mark near his name in the client, indicating the he was a social media influencer.
However, it is not known whether Kruse is one of the 80 accounts to be banned or warned at GGPoker nor has he responded to these accusations publicly.
“Recently, a high-profile RTA case was brought to light. We have re-dedicated our efforts to combating RTA and have swiftly adopted enhanced RTA detection methods and improved our internal processes for handling these cheaters,” the blog post added.
“Although there are public concerns that RTA is an imminent threat to the status quo in that it is undetectable, that is patently false,” the post goes on to say. “Our Security Team is fully aware of the different ways that RTA is being used, and we want to emphasize that RTA is detectable.”
Players on GGPoker Can Now Report Suspicious Activity Through Pokercraft
Furthermore, GGPoker has also announced a new “community-focused reporting system to expedite the removal of cheaters” allowing players to report any suspicious activity during gameplay through the Hand History page or via Pokercraft, GGPoker’s built-in tracking tool.
“Players are now able to report any suspicious activity during gameplay, streamlining the reporting process,” the company said. “A report can be submitted during play via the Hand History page or anytime via Pokercraft,” the operator’s built-in tracking tool.
“These reports will allow us to act more quickly against suspected RTA and other cheaters and will provide better context for us to base our investigations on,” the company said.