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Don't Play at Online Casinos From Un-Trusted Computers

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Online players are concerned whether their login names and passwords are safe on the servers of the online casinos. They have reason to be because if any unauthorized person gets access to this information he can login to the player’s casino account and start wagering with the player’s funds. When the player next logs in himself he may find that there are no funds left to wager. But players can rest assured that online casinos are doing their best to ensure that their servers are safe from being hacked into. Players need to be concerned more with what they should do and should not do in order to ensure that they do not compromise sensitive information like their log in names and passwords. One very important precaution that they should take is that they should not access their online casino accounts from un-trusted computers.

An un-trusted computer is one that is not exclusively used by the player round the clock. It is a computer shared by other users in which other users can download programs and utilities. Examples of un-trusted computers are those that are available at Internet cafes, school or college libraries and at work places. If home computers are also allowed to be used indiscriminately by others they too become un-trusted computers. Of these the most commonly used by online casino players are computers at Internet cafes. Players use these because they do not have a computer at home or because they do not want people at home to know that they are waging on online casinos.

Un-trusted computers have key loggers installed in them. Key loggers are so called because they track every key pressed by the user. Even though the password keyed in by the online player is transmitted to the server of the online casino in an encrypted form, it goes to the key logger as plain text. Hence persons having access to key loggers can read the password keyed in by the player. This renders the complex security system installed by the online casino futile at least as far as that player is concerned.

There are two types of key loggers commonly used. One is known as backdoors and the other is known as spyware. Backdoors are installed on public computers for bonafide purposes. They are used to track instances of hate mail and spam and other similar abuses of public computers. In the larger international context backdoors are used to track communication from criminal organizations like terrorists. Backdoors bring accountability computers systems that have many users. Spyware are software programs that are part of applications downloaded by the users. These applications can include online casinos. They track the movements of the user as he surfs across the Internet in order to learn his personal habits which can be then used to make the application more useful. The spyware can be programmed to access the passwords and other sensitive information. The issue before the player is not whether the key loggers serve a useful purpose or not. The issue is that key loggers compromise the security of the player. Therefore the player needs to access online casinos through dedicated computers on which he has total control so that he can ensure that there are no key loggers installed.

Even if the online player is wagering from a trusted computer he needs to install quality virus scanners such as those developed by Avast, AVG, McAfee, or Norton. Some online casinos may have spyware installed in their software and virus scanners locate these spyware and inform the player. The player should run the virus scanners regularly and also install programs like spybot that can destroy spyware.
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