Another Reason Why Pokerstars is the Number #1 Room To Play In .  The increase in the number of online pokerroom ranking sites, which give detailed information on the status , performance , and profitability of top earning online players has alarmed many interested parties and resulted in a move to protect privacy by the webs largest online poker room, PokerStars.com.

The "leaderboard" style sites access statistics direct from online gambling companies like Poker Stars, giving Pokerstarsusers access to leader boards, tournament results, and individual player winnings, reports Cardplayer Magazine this week. Some sites go as far as giving their users the ability to look up the ROI, net winnings, in-the-money finish percentages, and other profitability indicators for every player on Poker Stars and other sites.

The threat to the privacy of individuals is obvious, and Poker Stars has revealed that it felt compelled to reconsider its position regarding access after substantial representations were made to the company by its players. The company sent a cautionary letter to the main tracking sites, which has created something of a furore among those most affected.

The letter explained the situation and the company's responsibility to its players, and laid down a set of rules that will henceforth govern access. These include provisions to prevent the display of player profitability data without that player's express permission.

Any player may choose to completely opt out of having any information about them displayed.

All requests for access must be handled privately and securely without the disclosure of the player’s e-mail address, real name, or other private information. Only the player’s Poker Stars user ID is necessary.

Both the opt-in and opt-out options must be prominently displayed on the main/front page of the Service (at a minimum, a normal-sized link on the front page to a more complete description elsewhere).

There is no “grandfather clause” for existing data. One hundred percent of historical profitability data must be removed from view until such time as a player explicitly opts in.

Any Service Operator found to be in violation of these rules risks having their access to PokerStars’ game client restricted and/or the service impeded, including, but not limited to, the warning of players who access the Service while the PokerStars client is open.

Stephen Winters, manager of Poker Stars game security, told CardPlayer that privacy was the overriding concern in introducing the new policy: "Over the past year or more, we have been collating feedback from our players via e-mail and public forums on the subject of game-play-data privacy. The view of a large number of our players is that they do not wish their ROI and profitability to be displayed in a public or subscription-based website," he said.

"PokerStars management respects the privacy of its players and feels strongly that this data should only be available for players who have explicitly expressed a wish for it to be displayed. If a player wishes to allow his full data set to be displayed, he has to opt into that particular service.

"We have made the “default setting” of our data policy such that only tournament cashes can be displayed for any player. This display of player’s tournament cashes would not reveal any ROI or profitability data. If a player does not even wish this information to be displayed, we are also allowing him to opt out completely.

"The right to privacy protection applies to all players, whether losing or winning, and there are many valid reasons for players not wanting their information to be shown publicly."

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