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Using VPNs (virtual private networks)

Discussion in 'Computers and Internet Geekland' started by D2Hammer, Oct 10, 2014.

    Oct 10, 2014
  1. D2Hammer

    D2Hammer Full Member

    Occupation:
    IT-Developer
    Location:
    Austria
    Here the same. Support said that I'm using a VPN which isn't true. Can't do any deposit, so I uninstalled the casino last week.
     
  2. Oct 10, 2014
  3. Slotaholic

    Slotaholic Experienced Member

    Occupation:
    IT-Guru
    Location:
    Sweden
    How could they say that you are using a vpn-connection? theres no way they can se if you use a vpn-connection, all they can se is that you might have a different ip then the one you hade when you created the account.
    They can trace your ip, and if your not using a known vpn provider then they will only se the isp and location.

    If you use 3g/4g then you get a new ip all the time and also when roaming, using dsl connection you have a lease time on your ip and how long that is depends on the isp.


    / Slotaholic
     
  4. Oct 12, 2014
  5. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    This is rather interesting.

    A hotly debated complaint, now moved to it's own thread, also has the old Tropica management claiming the player used a VPN, whereas the player claimed they were not.

    If we can get to the bottom of your case, and show that Rival are indeed erroneously detecting VPN use for some players, and why, it should help inform this other case, and indeed other cases where VPN use has been cited by the casino.

    So what, exactly, are you using to connect to the internet that support are seeing as a VPN?
     
  6. Oct 12, 2014
  7. Slotaholic

    Slotaholic Experienced Member

    Occupation:
    IT-Guru
    Location:
    Sweden
    Id like also like to know how they can see if user is using a vpn connection or not, and i wonder why it matters if the user only has one account?
    And if we go in abit deeper into the technical stuf then it would be ok to set up a ipsec tunnel but its not ok to use vpn.



    /Slotaholic
     
  8. Oct 12, 2014
  9. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    I had a look on Google about this, and it seems VPN use is quite widespread, especially in the USA. It's always billed as an essential security measure for safe browsing, and some people are just as worried about browsing "naked" (without their VPN) as they might be about not having any kind of anti virus or firewall.

    Of course, it's also the tool of choice for the fraudster, who has less than honest reasons for wanting "safe browsing".

    VPN services advertise by claiming customers need the service to remain secure on the internet. Another major marketing angle is VPN allows users outside of the USA to use much cheaper streaming services in order to fight back at the movie industry for deliberately pricing the services less favourably for the rest of the world, as well as making some content completely unavailable outside the US.

    As for detection, it seems it's nothing more than a central blacklist of IP addresses "known to be used by VPN service providers". This could well be how errors are made in wrongly accusing people of using a VPN when they are not, a simple matter of the data on the blacklist being wrong or out of date. Conversely, some VPN use goes undetected because the service has not yet had it's IP addresses detected and added to a blocklist.

    My ISP is plagued by having ALL outbound emails wrongly blocked due to erroneous blacklisting of it's email gateways by Spamcop and other such services. The effect is felt when users attempt to send emails to recipients who use these same blacklists for spam blocking. It's a constant "whack a mole" problem as no sooner has the ISP dealt with one problem, another one arises. It's impossible to get a permanent whitelist entry for valid email gateways such that this does not keep happening.

    It's a fundamental problem with blocklist detection. It does not detect ACTUAL use of a VPN, or an actual piece of spam email, it simply blocks EVERYTHING based on an entry of an IP address in a database.

    I also wonder whether the way some ISPs use proxies and caches between a subscriber and the internet (like mine does) can also cause false positive detections of deliberate "fraudulent" VPN or proxy use.

    I also found a forum post by a "professional gamer" who wanted to find a way to use a VPN to play online poker because his country was banned, and he was prepared to spend "what it takes" to set up an advanced enough solution to outsmart the poker operator. He was somewhat disappointed though, as he was advised that there was no way to guarantee to avoid detection, and one suggested he simply move house to an allowed country.

    It seems that VPN has become mainstream, and it is no longer the case that the ONLY reason someone would use one is to commit some kind of fraud.

    The VPN industry seems to be mostly to blame as it is wrongly marketing the service as a "necessary security measure" to protect people from the dangers of being hacked and their data stolen. They have a commercial interest in perpetuating the myth as their small monthly subscription adds up to more than the annual cost of the best anti-virus and firewall products.

    There are ways to tunnel back through someone's VPN and interrogate their machines to determine the truth about their OS, location, connection, running software, etc. This is why "professional gamer" was told even $10K wasn't enough to 100% guarantee success. There is a legal question as to whether this kind of detection can be used due to privacy laws, which might be why many companies use the blocklists instead. It could get expensive if someone caught them tunnelling back through their VPN to interrogate their machine, and then took out and won a lawsuit against them for it.
     
  10. Oct 13, 2014
  11. Slotaholic

    Slotaholic Experienced Member

    Occupation:
    IT-Guru
    Location:
    Sweden
    VPN use is verry common here in Sweden, when you connect to a open non secure wifi hotspot you will send all your traffic unencrypted, witch means that someone can connect and sniff that network and capture all traffice.
    If you use vpn the you will encrypt your traffic.

    Regarding the email block its quite common for isp:s the get blocked/blacklisted when they allow anonymous smtp traffice,this allows spammers to send large amounts of mail and this will cause the smtp server to be blacklisted.

    If you use a slite like this
    You must register/login in order to see the link.

    You will be able to tace a ip and get some basic information about the user, in some cases it will show if its a vpn:provider, but some cases you have a vpn:connection to our office or it might be a vpn:connection from you isp.

    /Slotaholic
     
  12. Oct 13, 2014
  13. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Pretty accurate. Most other IP lookups have gotten my town wrong.

    BUT.... it then sticks a WARNING up in the "tools" section, and this leads to a pretty scary (and mostly BS) page about why I should hide my IP address by buying "Hide my IP" software from them. It uses the scare tactic that from my IP address any hacker can find my exact home address and steal all my personal information.

    The BS part is that it only gives my town and first half of postcode. Accurate, but that's one heck of a lot of houses that share the same info. Hacking into my PC is not as simple as knowing my IP address either, there is a firewall to get past first, and it's on the router.

    This kind of scaremongering could be why VPNs are becoming increasingly common, and although in most instances it helps people stay safer that they would otherwise have been, such as when using a public hotspot, it can have serious adverse effects when, for example, playing online casinos or poker. It can also trip suspicions flags with some services, like payment processing, so in the deposit errors problem above, it may be that the processor has flagged up VPN usage, and blocked the deposit.

    This looks like becoming an increasing problem for the industry, as many users will be responding to the scare tactic advertising of VPNs and other types of IP hiding "security" software, installing the product, but not really understanding what they are using, and why sometimes it's a very BAD thing to be using.
     
  14. Oct 13, 2014
  15. Richas

    Richas Senior Member

    Occupation:
    Project Manager
    Location:
    UK
    VPN software is very common, if they are doing a check of other software on your system then they can get a false positive if your work connection uses tunneling software for increased security, it may even just be some software your bank has added for the same security gain.

    Plus VPN is legitimate extra security anyway, especially for open wifi connections.
     
  16. Oct 13, 2014
  17. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Maybe so, but it seems online casinos are using the use of VPN to deny payment under their terms and conditions. They will have to drag themselves into the 21st century and accept that VPN has now become more mainstream, just like online gambling has.

    Casinos argue that VPN is a fraudster's tool, therefore detecting it's use means they have detected a fraud. The original case, long since split away from both threads, involved no bonus, but did (according to the casino) involve the use of VPN. Although they didn't quote VPN as the primary issue, it did seem to trigger a "fishing expedition" against a player that used no bonus. They then "caught" a Roulette system, and they asked for notarised documents, and even for the notary themselves to be "notarised" in some way. In the end, they accepted the documents, but didn't pay as they had not resolved the issue of the VPN to their full satisfaction, and they believed that a "roulette system" had been used through this VPN to cheat the game.

    This is just one example of how VPN use can be a very BAD thing for someone who takes VPN on a par with anti-virus and firewall protection, and thus uses it all the time without really thinking about it.

    We have been critical of casino CS that routinely tell customers who encounter problems "switch off your anti-virus and firewall and try again", but we effectively have an instruction to "switch off your VPN or you WILL have a problem when you come to withdraw" in the terms and conditions. If they had made it mandatory to play only with anti-virus and firewall switched off, they would end up in the rogue pit.

    As far as I can see, a VPN should not be necessary for a home connection, as you are in charge of all the equipment and can lock out others from the network. A public system is different, and as anyone can join, and nothing is encrypted, a VPN makes sense. The dangers of open public hotspots has been publicised, and we have been warned about using things like online banking when connected to any kind of "open" network. There have even been demonstrations on TV as to how EASY it is for someone to just walk in with a laptop, grab a coffee, and steal traffic whilst looking like another genuine user sat in the same café.
     
  18. Oct 13, 2014
  19. dicky wink

    dicky wink Full Member

    Occupation:
    engineer
    Location:
    Lancashire
    using a VPN

    Hi all
    Just as a side note
    I am currently working in the US and ( live in the UK ) and bought a 4G t-mobile dongle here in the US ... But when i tried to view the CasinoMeister web site i was informed that the ISP had blocked it ...

    so i used my VPN and problem gone :)

    all the best

    Dicky
     
  20. Oct 13, 2014
  21. Googobucs

    Googobucs Meister Member

    Occupation:
    IT Manager
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    And there we have a real life example of why casino's don't allow VPN's. You can hide your identity. enough said on the matter.
     
  22. Oct 13, 2014
  23. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    This is not really hiding one's identity, rather it's taking a different route on the cyberhighway due to a blockage on the most direct route.

    One way forward would seem to be more "spying" on the machine itself by online casino operators, and using unique machine identifiers rather than IP addresses to verify their players. If the player logs on using a different machine, an additional verification check could be made to ensure it's the same person, rather than someone else using the account.

    Surely they could do what sites like HULA are now doing and block any login that comes via a VPN with a message on screen advising the player/customer to switch off their VPN in order to gain access.

    It looks like sites will have to start managing VPN use now that it has become so common. Blocking it could start losing them genuine customers, something HULA has encountered due to a backlash among it's US members who don't like the idea of having to switch off their "security" just to use a service they have paid for.

    As for the rest, this is a move that will ultimately drive MORE people to sites like Pirate Bay, who ENCOURAGE people to use VPN services. If more legitimate sites start blocking VPNs, they will lose PAYING customers who just happen to be in the wrong country to sites that offer "pirate" version for free. This flies in the face of what the big studios CLAIM, which is that by launching legitimate services, piracy is no longer necessary in order to access their content, it's just a means to dodge paying for it.

    I suspect it's the actions of the music and movie industries that has driven up the use of VPN and other proxy services to the point that it has become mainstream. All that will happen now is that the response will lead to the development of even harder to detect VPN like services, which will be a boon for fraudsters as well as useful for those fond of paying for content in a market of their choosing, rather than being held to ransom by fixed pricing agreements which stifle free market competition.
     
  24. Oct 13, 2014
  25. Googobucs

    Googobucs Meister Member

    Occupation:
    IT Manager
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    IMO there is no legitimate reason for anyone to use a VPN. If you're using one it should raise a red flag. Large organizations and universities use them for valid purposes but individuals don't need them.

    If you want one, great ! I'm all about freedom of choice. Now you have the freedom to not play at my casino.
     
  26. Oct 13, 2014
  27. Slotaholic

    Slotaholic Experienced Member

    Occupation:
    IT-Guru
    Location:
    Sweden
    Dont agree with you.
    I work with this on a daily basis and the use of vpn here in Sweden is very common.
    Many work from home and access their office network using vpn, and when you use free open wifi hotspots then you should use vpn to secure the traffic.
    You dont have to work for a large organization to have the need for vpn, we have small organizations (2-10 ppl) who use vpn to access the servers.
    More and more customers are going from having their own hardware to virtulize it and accessing it using ipsec or vpn.


    /slotaholic
     
  28. Oct 13, 2014
  29. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    A contradiction.

    Individuals also happen to work in large organisations and universities, so ANY connection that is shared can justifiably use VPN, yet an individual has no legitimate need. Well, if the individual has no legitimate need, neither does an organisation or a university, who should be using other means to secure their networks, the same as individuals who want to secure their own home network.

    It's really the result of the arms race between hackers and users. As one method of security gets routinely hacked, the security industry has to come up with something better. It's the encryption protection of the VPN that is seen as the "legitimate use". Geolocation was not intended to be a part of the concept of the internet, as the original idea was that it would be without borders. Geolocation is an add on that can be "broken" by other internet add-ons like VPN. It is Geolocation that VPN renders useless, it doesn't hide identity any more than dynamic IP does. I don't have a VPN, but my IP address doesn't identify me personally, it merely identifies that I am one among some 100,000+ people in a certain town. If IP address DID identify people when they weren't using a VPN, then anyone not using VPN should not be getting asked to send in their documents.

    Until we have common adoption of IPv6, we will not have the ideal of static IP addressing of every connected device, which will give us a true means of determining an actual street address based on IP address. This should also make it easier to police the use of any service designed to hide location as the street address from the IP would not be the same as the registered address of the customer, and since IPv6 addresses would be static, it can be assumed that a mismatch is definitely a problem.
     
  30. Oct 13, 2014
  31. Googobucs

    Googobucs Meister Member

    Occupation:
    IT Manager
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    I can see this becoming more common as more people work from home. I use a VPN myself to work from home after hours( I work for a large org).

    I can see someone mistakenly connecting to the casino while working using their VPN tunnel. I can also understand the casino blocking that traffic which should be a clue to you to disconnect your VPN and play from your own connection.

    Unfortunately we live in a world where the misdeeds of the few are felt by the many. Since VPN's can be used for evil, they are not allowed.
     
    1 person likes this.
  32. Oct 13, 2014
  33. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Is it easy to toggle a VPN on and off?

    Even if it is, it surely represents the danger that having turned it off, a user might forget to turn it back on again when working from home, and this could lead to a major security issue for their employer. It's the same argument as when casino CS tell players to diagnose a problem by switching off their anti-virus, even to the extent of always having it switched off when playing. In security terms, this is highly irresponsible behaviour as it leaves the network open to human error on a regular basis, and it's human error that is one of the biggest weaknesses when it comes to data security. An "always on" policy is the safest.

    I recall when casinos even ENCOURAGED people to play from work, they wanted the "work number" routinely, and would not ask for it unless they were open to the idea of phoning the player at work. For casinos, it meant players could play when on their break, and the push towards mobile versions is nothing more than using a more modern means to achieve the same effect, that of players being able to play when at work, or out and about, rather than only being able to play when they are back home, the kids in bed, crap on the telly, etc.
     
  34. Oct 13, 2014
  35. Googobucs

    Googobucs Meister Member

    Occupation:
    IT Manager
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    So you have no clue what we are talking about?
     
  36. Oct 13, 2014
  37. vinylweatherman

    vinylweatherman You type well loads CAG MM

    Occupation:
    STILL At Leisure
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    To be honest, I have only been looking into this recently, however it seems the casinos feel it's a simple matter of switching it off when you play, and switching it back on again when it's really needed, such as for work, or watching something on a US website.

    What puts me off is that it's a subscription service, around £5 a month at the "cheap end", which seems unfavourable when compared to using a password protected and encrypted home network, router firewall, and software anti malware. It also means the user trusting third party hardware with their security, leaving them with a potentially unprotected system were the VPN provider to be compromised.

    I wouldn't want to get caught out either by accidentally leaving it running when playing a casino and ending up in all sorts of trouble.

    I would bet that the Wikileaks exposure of just how invasive "big brother" has secretly been in the US and UK delivered a massive boost to the VPN industry. It's what DIDN'T get exposed that is really of concern, and it's clear that the US and UK don't see that there was anything wrong in what they did, but they seem determined to catch and barbeque the source of the leak.
     
  38. Oct 13, 2014
  39. refre

    refre Senior lurker PABnonaccred PABnoaccred

    Occupation:
    Professional slot player
    Location:
    .
    It's very easy.
    I have VPN from one of the large providers, and I can switch it on and off in seconds.
    I have it on my phone too, so I don't have to worry when surfing on an unsecured connection.


    Freddy
     

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