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Winning Poker Network CEO Addresses Player Concerns on Twitch

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On September 4, 2017, Winning Poker Network's CEO Phil Nagy conducted a live stream on Twitch.tv where he revealed some significant news. The most noteworthy item is that the Bigger Online Super Series (BOSS) of tournaments, originally scheduled for Sept. 6 - 10, has been postponed due to disruptions from distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. Other topics covered by Phil included upcoming server upgrades, the rerunning of the latest OSS Cub3d series, the impending launch of a mobile poker client, and possible sponsorship agreements with live streamers.

About the BOSS Cancelation

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The BOSS was intended to be the high-stakes culmination of the OSS Cub3d, a three-part series that also included the Mini Online Super Series (MOSS) and Online Super Series (OSS). After DDoS activities were launched against the Winning Network in recent weeks, several events in the first two legs of the OSS Cub3d had to be canceled. Rather than risking similar interruptions to the BOSS, network management decided to delay running it until server upgrades can be implemented in the next few weeks. The leaderboard for OSS Cub3d will pay out based on the results from the portion of the OSS Cub3d that was successfully run. The top three placers, as of right now, will each receive a $4,900 package to the Punta Cana Poker Classic in the Dominican Republic and a sterling silver bracelet.

Info on the DDoS Attacks

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A DDoS offensive involves spamming bogus data to websites or other network infrastructure. They don't typically attempt to compromise the account security of users. The main goal is usually to cause servers to go down, which is annoying to both the organization affected and its customers. Over the past three years, the frequency of DDoS attacks against online poker sites has increased. In recent weeks, the PaiWangLuo Network, Chico Network, and Winning Poker Network have all been targeted.

In most cases, the identities of the internet crooks launching these attacks are unknown. However, Phil revealed that someone contacted him in chat, claiming to be the hacker and giving a warning a minute or so before a wave of DDoS barrages began. This individual said that he was employed by a competing poker company to commit his malicious deeds, but there's no way of verifying this information.

Phil's Response to the DDoS Onslaught

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The WPN CEO has said that upgraded servers are in the offing. The exact details of what these upgrades entail weren't stated, but Phil did say that they will make it easier to compartmentalize poker operations so that a failure of one or several elements of the poker room won't lead to a total shutdown of service. Other possible solutions include banning ranges of IP addresses that seem to be linked to the DDoS attacks and obtaining DDoS protection from a third party, like CloudFlare.

Robert Goodloe Harper
Robert Goodloe Harper
(1765 - 1825)
"Millions for defense, but not one cent for tribute."

One road that Phil Nagy is completely opposed to taking is paying off the criminals. He commented, “I will never, ever, ever, ever, EVER pay an attacker. I won't pay a ransom. I won't do it.” Phil believes that giving money to these shady characters just encourages them to step up their activities in order to secure more lucrative payoffs going forward. Perhaps the leader of the WPN is taking his inspiration from statesman Robert Goodloe Harper who, when France demanded cash in 1798 in exchange for ceasing piratical attacks upon American shipping, uttered the famous phrase, “Millions for defense, but not one cent for tribute.”

New Tourney Events Forthcoming

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After beefing up security protocols, the Winning Poker Network will be hosting the canceled BOSS events. There will be a Million Dollar Sunday tournament added to the schedule with a seven-figure guarantee, and the normal $500 + $40 buyin will be cut in half, making it more affordable for those who would otherwise pass on it. Phil continued by explaining that the entire OSS Cub3d series will be run again, but that it will be “way bigger.” The total amount guaranteed in the just-suspended series was $6.7 million, which is already a mouth-watering sum. We can only guess at what Phil's definition of “way bigger” is, but it will probably be enough to make players fall all over themselves in their haste to register for the tournaments.

Mobile Poker Coming Soon

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Turning to matters unrelated to DDoS attacks, Phil announced that new mobile poker software will appear next week. The lack of mobile compatibility has been a glaring omission in the offerings of the Winning Network for several years now. Almost every other poker firm that serves the United States has deployed poker clients that work with smartphones and tablets. The network appears ready to plug this leak in its game. The new app won't support all tables and game formats, but it will contain Jackpot Poker and SNG 2.0, two sit-n-go variants that are only available at the WPN.

Live Streamer Sponsorships on the Table

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Although he didn't commit to any specific program, Phil indicated that he's open to sponsoring poker players to live stream their sessions. Rather than courting big-name professionals, the idea is to feature ordinary people who have a passion for poker. The boss of the WPN said that he will try to solicit feedback regarding a set of criteria to be used in determining who will be offered a sponsorship deal. As long as an individual ticks off all the boxes, he or she will qualify regardless of the size of their following or their standing within the poker community. It's likely that some of the yardsticks used will relate to performance at the tables, so any candidate would have to be a solidly profitable player. Phil mentioned the figure of $100,000 in annual sponsorship money, which would be split roughly 75%/25% between online tournament tickets and live poker packages.

WPN: Promoting the Interests of Players

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Some poker entities seem to care little for the complaints of their users, but Phil Nagy and the Winning Poker Network are cut from a different mold. They have been active on poker forums, Twitch.tv, and Facebook, seeking to connect with customers via as many possible avenues as possible. This strategy has worked in the past, as evidenced by the recent growth of the WPN, and it bodes well for the future too. If you're interested in jumping aboard this well-piloted ship, then you can learn how to sign up at Americas Cardroom, the leading site, in our well-researched Americas Cardroom review. You'll get a welcome bonus of 100% up to $1,000 that clears at a rate of 20% effective rakeback, and the site will also grant you $50 free to try out Jackpot Poker SNGs.

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