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Poker News | PokerWorks Op-Ed

Poker Pundit - Jeremy “Chipsteela” Menard - Hacked! Part I

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It’s been a little while since my last entry, and a lot of that has to do with the fact that I was recently the victim of a computer hacking. I had always heard horror stories of this happening to friends and other players online, but regardless I was that naïve guy that thought that there was no way that this could ever happen to me.  Boy was I wrong. In this insert I’ll give you the rundown of what exactly I had to go through, and also provide some hints as to the best ways to make sure your poker accounts are secure, since I had to find out the hard way.

It all started a little over a month ago when my fiancé called me to ask why I was being so weird in Gmail chat, thing is I wasn’t even on Gmail at the time. I logged on and booted the guy that was in my account off. I thought that it was weird someone was on my account, but didn’t realize just how bad it was that someone had access to this account. I became very alarmed when all of a sudden I was kicked out of my account, and found that I couldn’t get back into it. I knew that all of the sites I play online were connected to this email, so in a panic I decided to change my email on all sites to a new one that I created. During this time I was also 8-tabling MTTs, some of them being Star’s WCOOP tournament series, and I was getting deep in a few so I couldn’t just sit out.

Before I knew it I kept getting a warning message from Full Tilt that someone else was trying to log into my account, since this is the only site that lets you log in from a different computer when an account is logged in. I started freaking out as the hacker relentlessly tried over and over to log in, and I had to keep pressing the deny button so he wouldn’t be able to get into my account and gain access to my poker funds. It’s a good thing that multitabling over 10 tables of online poker at a time has given me the ability to multitask in such a sick way, because I was simultaneously trying to keep up with the tournaments I was playing, click deny hundreds of times as the screen kept popping up, and also send an email to Full Tilt from my new account explaining that someone was trying to gain access to my account. Finally the attempts to login ceased, and it couldn’t have happened at a better time because now I was really deep in the Stars 50 rebuy which had a huge field due to the WCOOP traffic.
Once the login attempts stopped and I was able to send an email to Full Tilt support, I thought that I may be in the clear. I was able to relax for a little while, and I managed to run pretty well on my way to the final table, and then continued that trend once I reached the final table. I also noticed that the remaining players were starting to play very passively, perhaps to move up the pay scale, so I really turned up the aggression. I was putting people to decisions for their tournament life left and right, and when they did call I ended up sucking out like a champ. The combination of aggressive play, running well, and more running well enabled me to take down the tournament without much problem for a nice $20k score. The rest of that day went ok as far as poker goes.  I went pretty deep in the 1k WCOOP event, but came up short in the end.  I had almost completely forgotten about the hacking incident that had occurred, as I thought I had resolved the problem.  The next day I quickly found out that wasn’t the case.  

I woke up the next day to find that I was unable to get into any of my poker accounts. What the fuck was going on? I looked through my email, and found that my poker accounts had been frozen due to the fact that another person was also contacting them saying that my account was hacked, and that they were really me. I was asked to provide documentation to prove my identity, which I promptly did. Here is where the situation really gets crazy. I was later able to log back in to my primary email account, and when I looked through the sent mail I saw that the hacker was also sending information from that email in an attempt to prove they were me.  Apparently, I had a picture of my Driver’s License still on my computer from when I had to provide that information to another site in order to transfer on their site (Huge Mistake). I suppose that this hacker had found a way to actually hack into my computer, because they also had sent in a copy of my electric bill. My only saving grace was that the emails that he sent were in the most broken English I have ever seen, so it was pretty obvious that he wasn’t me.  Once I logged out of this account, I found that I was unable to get back into the new account that I had created. This whole situation was becoming my worst nightmare.

Find out how I finally resolved everything, and also some security tips to maintain a safe account in my next entry.

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