California Man Tricked New Jersey's Geolocation to the Tune of $90,000

This story was published more than 4 years ago.

This week it was revealed that the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement seized $90,000 from a player in California who was able to somehow play at the Garden State's online casinos from 3,000 miles away.

The man was identified as Vinh Dao, and figured out a way to bypass geolocation technology that allowed him to play the games. He began doing so in February 2014, and he racked up $90,000 in wins from both the Borgata and Caesars Interactive. The news reports haven't revealed how much of the funds Dao actually received, but they did indicate that the betting groups are obligated to turn over funds to the DGE.

The casinos and Dao haven't objected to the seizure of the funds, which will be given to funds for the elderly and disabled as well as the state's problem gambling fund. For his part, Dao assisted investigators in how he beat the system, and will be allowed to keep $2,500.

About the author

Therese Williams // UK Correspondent
Therese Williams
Therese is a fervent fan of slot machines and pub fruities, often trying her luck at some of the top online casinos. She covers news for Casino Listings with a focus on the UK and Europe. Therese studied arts and creative writing at university and has written for newspapers in the UK.
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sharpe's picture
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11 March 2019 - 6:31pm

Wow, what a bonus for Dao keeping those $2500 😜

I guess that's always the risk when there's a Geo location software that some 'smart guys' could beat it and I wonder if Dao just used something called VPN 😀 I doubt that's the case cause they would of found a lot more violators then..right??

And even breaking the Geo Location software you still have to beat the casino right?!?

Common give the man the half of his profits for outsmarting your exchange he could revile the secret I guess...and then you could always fine him $42 500 😉

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11 March 2019 - 6:36pm

Yeah, there's always someone out there looking to game the system. If they're caught after pulling it off, I'm liking the thoughts of New Jersey rewarding them for showing how he did it. Much better than going after him and having him possibly shut up.


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12 March 2019 - 3:30pm

I agree Slim, that's a smart way for them to reveal his secret at a very decent price...that being said I just wish they left Mr Dao more than those 2500$...but you can't be too greedy when you did...a crime in fact.


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13 March 2019 - 4:13am

New Jersey geo-location is actually pretty tight. They require a mobile phone verification and the phone location is checked in real time to make sure the person is inside the state.

So my guess is the guy was somehow proxying through a New Jersey VPN, with access to a mobile phone through someone he knew. Or maybe even setting up a phone in a storage location inside the state. There are lots of ways you could get around it.


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14 March 2019 - 3:20am

He should have stood strong with that info, authorities would have paid him much , much more than the 2500$ he got lmao.
But I'm happy to read that the rest of that money is going to charities.Govt should throw all money gained from fines and seizures such as this at charities.


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14 March 2019 - 11:35am

Android phones let you turn on developer mode which allows you to manually set a GPS location for your phone intended to test app functionality. Wonder if that's what he did in addition to a VPN?