What ACR's "Nanonoko" hire tells us about online poker security

Jon Pill
Posted on: December 29, 2020 13:34 PST

Randy "Nanonoko" Lew has a new gig with ACR as a security consultant.

"Not all our big news happens at the tables!" ACR tweeted. "We’re pleased to announce that we have hired Randy “Nanonoko” Lew @nanonoko as a Security Consultant and Gameplay Expert."

In a press release on ACR's The Big Blind, the site describes Lew's new role as including "working with [ACR's] security team on suspected fraud, collusion, and bot activity. He will also review hand histories when the security team is forced to do an investigation and give us his expert opinion."

Lew is one of the stars of the early boom years of online poker. He's the perfect archetype of the 24-tabling grinder bathed in the light of dual monitors. His reputation means his role will probably be more of a PR gig than a major consultancy. ACR stresses that when it comes to security consultants, "Americas Cardroom has lots of them."

Big name, small job

The company also points out that Lew is currently an Australian resident and so won't be playing on ACR itself. Currently the Ozzie market is not one that ACR serves.

However, ACR mentions that "he will be on hand to meet and greet players at major live poker events. Including our very own Cage Live in Costa Rica. This event is expected back sometime in 2021 after being postponed due to Covid-19."

Australia has had trouble getting parents to vaccinate their children with long-proven vaccines. Despite bans on daycare for unvaccinated children, measles outbreaks have repeatedly hit Australia. Parents who voluntarily fail to vaccinate their children are the main cause of these outbreaks.

So, Lew might find the queue for his vaccination passport a lot shorter than in some other countries.

Stopping the spread of cheating

While the world has dealt with its dry cough, fever, and altered sense of smell, the poker world has had to face its own epidemic. The year started in medias res with the Postlegate shenanigans. Then things escalated when someone ratted out poker pseudo-phenom Fedor Kruse for using real-time assistants while he played.

Reacting to the RTA scandal in their typical measured and dignified way, GGPoker panicked and kicked forty players off its servers. That seemed to solve the problem, as we've heard little else from GG on the subject since.

Hiring Lew seems like a much sharper reaction to the climate of concern. In a year where cheats are high-profile, it makes sense to reassure your customer base with security consultants that are also high profile.

And it's twice as cost-efficient if they're also good enough at the game to more or less act as sponsored pros. Lew is one of those, with his $3 million in online cash game winnings, $1.6 million in live tournament winnings, and a dozen or so years as a solid pro at both poker and Tekken.

Analyzing hand histories and being the stable face of ethical poker is key for a poker security consultant. If anyone is qualified to do both tasks, it's probably "Nanonoko".

Featured image source: Twitter