Throughout Blackjack history there have been individuals that have sought to defy the odds and beat the casino, but in terms of success and scope, few can compare with the exploits of the MIT team.
The genesis of the Blackjack MIT team began in a university in Cambridge in the early 90s. Unlike the popular image of desperate hustlers and card cheaters, the members of the team were composed of some of the brightest students in the campus. Using their knowledge of mathematics, the group set about exploiting the weaknesses inherent in casinos at the time.
The Blackjack MIT team utilized several methods, but at the root of it were card counting and the use of computer software to generate the best possible outcomes. However there was more to it than that; the team went about their operations by traveling in separate groups.
The Blackjack MIT team also went to different casinos, and made use of aliases. With the backing of investors who were promised cash, the units, appearing in venues in various forms (from students to businessmen) collected vast amounts, with some raking in over $500,000 in a single week. Their total earnings cannot be determined but it would not be an exaggeration to say it ran into the millions of dollars.
But their success would not last; sophisticated surveillance cameras allowed the casinos to monitor all the action at the Blackjack tables, and eventually they realized that some players kept winning regularly despite the low odds in the game. Carelessness on the part of some members of the team allowed security agencies to track their addresses, and their faces were recognized from their school photos.
The other problem was that some members of the Blackjack MIT team began to commit some elementary mistakes such as trying to get back what they lost at a particular casino.
As effective as their strategy was, it wasn’t perfect and there were times when they would lose. However, instead of spreading out, they kept trying their luck at the same venue, and when they began to win again, the personnel began to take notice.
Eventually the players were discovered and subsequently banned. The end result was an even more stringent effort to monitor and ban all prospective card counters and those carrying electronic devices.
If there’s anything that can be said about the Blackjack MIT team, it is that their efforts forced the casinos to develop more advanced security measures that in the end benefit all players.