A Look Into The World Of Card Counting

Floor personnel including, dealers, floor supervisors, and pit bosses have little time to count the number of cards within a standard deck. Therefore, this person needs to learn the ideas and methods behind card counting so they are more effective at catching someone in the act.
Three specific indicators differentiate a regular player from a card counter. These include:

  • The card counter is using a betting spread
  • The card counter is consistently deviating from standard strategy
  • The card counter is only taking insurance when the deck has high card values

Supervisors should be able to notice a high betting spread through simple observation. Since there will be a high betting fluctuation, it is safe for supervisors to assume that if this is a card counter they will make plays that deviate from the strategy and take insurance with high card values in the deck.

One card counting strategy is aggressively doubling-down and splitting 11 vs. and Ace, 9 vs. 2, 10 vs. 10, 10/10 vs. 5, and 10/10 vs. 6. Another strategy is standing during potential bust situations like 16 vs. 10, 15 vs. 10, 12 vs. 2, or taking insurance with any hand dealt.
These are two situations that may occur when a high bet is wagered.
On the other hand, when a small bet is wagered; hitting instead of doubling like with 11 vs. 10 and 9 vs. 11 and hitting during bust scenarios such as with 16 vs. 10, 15 vs. 10, and 12 vs. 4 and never taking insurance are common plays by a card counter.

With the surrender strategy, there are two types: basic strategy and the basic strategy multiple decks. The basic strategy is 16 vs. an Ace, 14 vs. 10, or 15 vs. 10. The basic strategy multiple decks occurs with a 14 vs. an Ace, 13 vs. 10, or 16 vs. 9 with multiple decks. Based on these three betting situations, the floor personnel should begin to notice a pattern in the fluctuation of the player’s strategy.

Once a player is suspected of this misdeed, a supervisor should be notified who then contacts the Surveillance department. They count all decks to find out if the player had been counting without taking time from the floor person. It is vital to not incriminate someone that is not actually a card counter. Card counting and discovering card counters is an art that can only be mastered through experience.