Absolute Poker issues update on scandal

Empire Casino, London

Joe Norton, the former grand chief of the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake and the owner of Tokwiro Enterprises ENRG, which holds a 100% interest in Absolute Poker, sent out a statement Thursday with more information about the poker site's recent security breach.

Norton said the Kahnawake Gaming Commission's investigation into the security breach is still on-going, and as such, any information provided in the interim statement he put out was subject to the completion of the final KCG inquiry. The audit by Gaming Associates was also in the process of being completed.

"First and foremost, we would like to assure our players, once again, that the security breach, which resulted in unfair play, was resolved immediately after it was discovered and confirmed, and AP's sites are absolutely secure," Norton said.

Players affected by the breach have been fully reimbursed with interest - an amount estimated at $1.6 million in refunds.

So far an internal audit by the poker site has discovered that the unfair play went on for about 40 days, beginning on Aug. 14.

According to Norton, a known perpetrator was immediately terminated upon discovery of the scheme and no longer has access to Absolute Poker, and the internal investigation is still continuing.

Norton notes that no evidence of the current or past existence of a "super-user" account has been found, and there are no player accounts in the poker site's system with the ability to see other players' hole cards.

Instead, the system breach was the result of a recent internal software release impacting internal reporting. Only an authorized employee at the poker site would have been able to exploit that issue with the internal reporting.

That employee manipulated the internal reporting software, together with the gaming software, to cheat on the site.

"The security breach was not, therefore, the result of an external action, and no individual outside AP could exploit the breach," Norton said.

The accounts found to have been used in the cheating scheme are potripper, graycat, steamroller, doubledrag, payup, supercard55 and romnaldo. The accounts have been closed, and all players who played hands and lost funds during the period in question against these accounts have received refunds.

Norton said Absolute Poker can confirm that not every hand played by the perpetrating accounts during the period in question was compromised by the tool that gave them an unfair advantage. However, the site is refunding players for the net loss resulting from every hand played against those accounts during the affected period.

All hand histories with respect to the affected period were retained by the poker site and made available to the Kahnawake Gaming Commission and the internal auditor for review.

Norton said all registered accounts in the poker site's database are under investigation to ensure that there are no other compromised accounts with links or associations to the closed accounts.

"AP regrets the damage that has been done to its players and to its own reputation by this incident," Norton said.

"We are absolutely focused on doing the right thing for our loyal customers, employees, consultants and business partners, and we will continue to work with the KGC and Gaming Associates to bring this incident into the full light of day and to right any wrongs done to innocent victims of this unfair play."

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