A fresh breeze in the Casino spam

I usually sort the spams I receive in my personal email after the date I receive them. I do this once a week and then I move them to the spam archive. This time, two emails draw my attention because they were very old: 23.05.2009. Well, considering the above mentioned rule, this is simply not possible. This is a very old method to draw reader’s attention by being either post the first or the last. So, I decided to take a closer look at them.

Fig. 1: Roulette spam mail

Fig. 1: Roulette spam mail

The email seems to be the reply of someone to the request of a friend to share some tricks about playing at the roulette. The idea is simple… play the same color and raise the bet by a factor of 2.5 until you win. I wondered why exactly 2.5 and what happens if you change the ratio. Let’s have a look into the mathematics of this rule to see if it is indeed correct all the time.

I wrote a small Perl script to simulate the roulette play. Let’s see how it goes:

Betting Possible loss Possible win
3 $ 4 $ 2 $
8 $ 11 $ 5 $
20 $ 28 $ 12 $
50 $ 70 $ 30 $
125 $ 175 $ 75 $

So, the algorithm is clear and is correct. Where is the catch ? Why 2.5 ?

Let’s simulate with a ratio of 2:

Betting Possible loss Possible win
2 $ 3 $ 1 $
4 $ 6 $ 2 $
8 $ 12 $ 4 $
16 $ 24 $ 8 $
32 $ 48 $ 16 $

The winning is no longer so interesting when using a too small ratio. One has to play a lot in order to win something substantial in this case. The catch is that you have to play with a decent ratio of minimum 2.5 until you win. If you stop, you lose all you have invested so far.

Behind this clever way to make advertisements is an online casino website which works only if you install their software on your PC. I downloaded the software and Avira promptly detected it as GAME/Casino.Gen. Avira Antispam detects the email as Spam with probability very High. Unfortunately, Google looses again on protecting the world from its users: the spam email was sent through a Gmail account.

As usual, we advise everybody to never fall for such scams. Even if you win online, it is possible that the software you install brings some other “surprises” with it. And I am not referring to money.

Sorin Mustaca
Manager International Software Development