Friday September 06,2013 : LAPTOP SCARE AT EUROPEAN POKER TOUR BARCELONA
Tournament players concerned that possible "hole card viewing" trojan may have been planted
Poker players staying at the Hotel Arts in Barcelona for the Pokerstars European Poker Tour stop in the Spanish city were concerned that their laptops may have been contaminated by criminal activity this week.
Pokerstars confirmed on the twoplustwo forum that police are investigating at least two cases in which unauthorised entry into hotel rooms where laptops had been left may have resulted in trojans being planted which could prejudice the owners.
The two known cases involved players returning to their rooms to find their laptops had disappeared, only for these to reappear shortly after following reports to hotel management and the police.
Pokerstars poker spokesman Lee Jones said that his company was actively working with the players, hotel management and the police as investigations progressed.
It was not clear when we went to press whether the insertion of trojans capable of putting the owners at a disadvantage has actually occurred, and if so what form these might take.
Speculation was rife across a number of poker information websites that such trojans could give remote access to laptops, thus putting the owners at risk from both a playing and personal information perspective.
To be on the safe side, Pokerstars recommended that players ensure their laptops are with them or safely secured at all times.
The company posted the following advisory:
"If poker players suspect they have been targeted, then it is feasible some form of trojan was installed in order to gain remote unauthorized access to their laptops. For example, hidden screen-sharing programs can illicitly share hole cards while the player plays online; keyloggers can track and “send home” key-presses in order to uncover passwords for online poker rooms, email addresses, ewallets or other sensitive accounts."