Games of chance are notorious for their involvement in various frauds. No wonder, then, that players are not sure whether to place trust in gambling houses regarding fair play.
Thankfully, a new trend called provably fair brings a change in crypto and non-crypto online casino games, allowing everyone to verify the fairness of their games. What’s more, you can check whether you’ve been cheated on or not in real-time without any third-party interference.
Read on to learn more about how this system works and whether fraudsters could breach its security.
Provably Fair Definition
Provably fair is the latest blockchain technology used in Bitcoin and other crypto games and casinos. Gambling venues use a unique code – an algorithm – to create an encrypted key that reveals the game’s outcome. They then send this key and another one to players, allowing them to confirm the game’s results.
In other words, provably fair is an algorithm that enables players to check the fairness of an online casino towards them.
The entire process depends on three pieces of technology, and these are:
- Random number generators that determine the games’ results by generating up to billions of numbers per second,
- Seed generators that feed the algorithm with numbers that determine outcomes,
- Hashing, whose purpose is to transform a more extended data series into a shorter one.
Note that cryptographic hashes used in Bitcoin gambling venues are deemed unbreakable. Thus, bettors can rest assured that no one can interfere with them.
If you’re unsure what this means when put into practice, we’ll show you an example that should make it more straightforward. Before that, let’s examine three variables to understand better how a provably fair system works.
Provably Fair Variables
Three variables that the provably fair algorithm depends on are:
- Server seed – provided by the gambling site,
- Client seed – supplied by the gamer’s browser that they can modify,
- Cryptographic nonce – a number that increases by one with each bet the bettor places (from 0 to 1, from 1 to 2, etc.),
Note that there is more than one method to execute a provably fair system. Yet, the one using these variables is the most common. Next up, let’s look at an example.
Provably Fair Explained: An Example
The system works a little differently depending on your game of choice. If you play Blackjack at an online casino, provably fair functions like this:
Online Casino Provides the Server Seed
The online gambling venue shuffles the deck of cards and produces a hashed seed number. The player receives the number before playing. Note that hashing and randomness of the server seed make cheating by any party almost impossible.
Player Supplies the Client Seed
Before you play (or bet if playing a betting game), it is advisable to calibrate the client seed. Once you provide the client seed, it changes one of the cards in the game or makes another adjustment to the game that neither party will know about.
Also, the nonce calculator will set the starting nonce value at 0 or 1 and then keep increasing it every time a bet is placed.
A Card is Dealt
With both seeds available, the system deals a card, and you learn whether you’ve won or lost.
Now, you can see the original deck from before you provided your seed (changed the card) and compare it with the current one.
Confirming the Game’s Outcome
With the session over, players get the unencrypted server seed version. They can do the following to verify the provable fairness of the Blackjack game:
- Be positive that the hashed (encrypted) seed you got at the beginning of the game corresponds to the unhashed (unencrypted) seed you received at its end. If it does, everything’s in order.
- If calculating with the nonce, you can verify the outcome through a verifier that most of the casinos with provably fair algorithms use. To get the list of results for comparison, you have to provide the number of games (bets) and the hashed server seeds that the provably fair verifier will check.
Can This Algorithm Solve Every Gambling Issue?
Advanced cryptography, such as the provably fair algorithm, is a powerful technique for preventing an unfair advantage for any party involved in online games of chance. As we have seen, the algorithm records the game’s results using blockchain technology, and everyone can check whether those have been manipulated or not.
Provably fair makes cheating when you play gambling games virtually impossible. Yet, it can’t solve every problem related to games of chance. So, let’s overview provably fair gambling pros and cons.
Provably Fair Benefits
- Self-executing codes by blockchain technology are unchangeable. Thus, no one can change them to get an unfair advantage.
- Complete transparency is another advantage of provably fair. As auditors, you can refer to the records to confirm the fairness of games you played in the past.
- You don’t have to place trust in third-party authenticators any longer. Before provably fair emerged, various side authenticators with questionable trustworthiness audited online casinos. Now, bettors playing games at crypto casinos are the auditors themselves.
Provably Fair Downsides
Now that you know how a provably fair gambling system works, we can point out some issues that the algorithm can’t address:
- Some casinos have security issues, making them prone to hacking. If that happens, provably fair is powerless to prevent hackers from stealing the player’s data. Thus, make sure you choose a reputable and secure slot provider to test your luck.
- Excessive withdrawal fees and restrictions can reduce your gambling gains considerably or make withdrawals difficult. Thus, check online casino’s terms and conditions carefully before making your first Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency deposit.
- Provably fair can’t improve your chances of winning a game with terrible odds because it can’t (and shouldn’t) do anything about the math of the game you play. So, if you play Keno, a lottery-like gambling game, you’ll still lose most of the time because the chances of winning this game are pretty low.
Provably Fair Casino Games: How Easy Are They to Hack?
In theory, this type of cheating isn’t impossible, but things are a bit different in practice. Hacking a provably fair system to either steal user data or try and beat the odds is an improbable proposition because:
- The hash you receive from the server seed before the game begins determines which hands will bring you a win. And no computer can break it quickly enough for the player to get a peek so they know which hands to bet on.
- Blockchain technology is essentially a public ledger storing and sharing information between the different nodes. If a node detects malicious activity of any kind, the entire network gets notified, and the suspicious node immediately gets booted from the system.
- Finally, provably fair systems casinos boast robust security that even a professional hacker would find challenging to breach. And even if they succeeded, the chances of not getting caught and not compromising the blockchain node involved would be minute at best.
In summary, hacking might, in theory, become possible with technological advancements and if a hacker is a provably fair expert. However, it will always be a highly risky and unlikely proposition that can only be made somewhat easier if a gambling site has potential security flaws.
How To Choose a Gambling Website With Provably Fair Games?
Now, let’s see what you can do to ensure everything is fair and protect your data from bad actors online.
Ensure the Site Is 100% Secure
Before playing, confirm that the online casino maintains tight security measures. One such measure may be that storage requires multiple signatures from different keyholders for fund access.
Inspect if the site lists bets, odds, amounts, and gains with timestamps and usernames in real-time to ensure fairness in crypto casino games. Moreover, check whether it publishes game source codes for inspection by the Bitcoin community.
Pick a Website Offering the Services You Like
Provably fair casinos offer various services, which may or may not be to your liking. While some offer sports betting and different gambling games, others may feature lotto games.
To sum up, the provably fair method is a big step forward in ensuring the security and fairness of online games. Circumventing the security measures and remaining undiscovered and thus unpunished is quite unrealistic, so hackers have a hard time with such sites.
In conclusion, taking several simple steps to verify the site’s safety and transparency is all that stands between you and fair play in online gambling.
What does provably fair mean?
Provably fair is an algorithm used to encrypt data that determines the outcome of an online game. Based on blockchain technology, it is extremely hard to crack and limits the ability of the player, casino, or any other third party to influence the game’s result.
How do you use provably fair?
Before playing, you get an encrypted number called seed sent by the gambling site. After that, you or your browser supply another seed, which, combined with the one from the site, determines the game’s outcome. In blockchain gambling, you can check the fairness of the transaction by consulting the public ledger that records it. For a more detailed guide, check out our article above.
What is a seed in gambling?
The seed refers to a hashed seed number consisting of a sequence of letters and numbers. Generated by both the server and the player’s computer, these numbers determine the game’s outcome.