Feel like the chips are down, and the decks are stacked against you? You will do if the computer you are playing poker on is infected with malware.
Security researchers at ESET have revealed details of the Odlanor spyware, which can help hackers cheat at online poker.
So, what you’re probably dying to find out is - how does malware help you win at poker.
The first step, of course, is that you’re going to need to infect the computers of other online poker players who you want to beat.
One way to do that would be to infect software that computer users (whether poker players or not) might download. That’s fairly easy - breaking into the websites of legitimate software vendors may be a challenge, so it’s easier to offer links to boobytrapped installers for a utility, or to upload an infected file to a peer-to-peer file-sharing service.
Alternatively, if you wished to target poker players a little more directly, you could distribute an infected copy of one of the many poker player databases or calculators that gambling fans like to use.
ESET explains that once in place, the Odlanor malware targets people who play Poker on the PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker websites, taking screenshots of players’ open game windows - which, of course, includes details of the cards in their hand and their user id - and sends it back to the online cheat.
Of course, this isn’t just a problem if you don’t want to lose at online poker - there is also a danger that your computer and its data may be compromised in other ways.
After all, now a hacker has managed to infect your computer - do you think they are going to be happy just playing online poker?
Don’t gamble with your computer security - keep your anti-virus and security patches up-to-date, and exercise caution about what software you install on your PC.