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Tips to Protect Yourself Against Las Vegas Casino Thieves

Updated on February 26, 2015

Whether you are a resident or simply visiting Las Vegas casinos, thieves always follow the money. What better place to steal someone's money than a casino where millions are exchanged every day. Although Las Vegas casino security is tight and is on a constant look out for casino thieves, it doesn't mean you should be relaxed on your own security. There are a few tips to protect yourself against being a victim of some of the most common cons that occur in these casinos.


The most common practice is the art of pick pocketing. Casino thieves in Las Vegas will use subtle ways to accomplish taking your money right from your pocket. Many times this is a gentle bump or they casually brush up against you.

Las Vegas casino security suggests that any time someone touches you in any way you should check the pocket that holds your money. Don't take any touch, bump, or brush for granted. Security personnel also suggest that you should wear a shirt with a front pocket and this is the best place to keep your money. It makes it more difficult for a thief to pull of subtle if you money is right under your nose so to speak.

Purse Snatchers

Las Vegas casino thieves see women as easy targets. It isn't necessarily because of their gender. It is because women typically carry a purse. Some men carry bags or briefcases and these tips can be used in that case as well. It is best not to carry a purse or a bag at all. However, if you must, consider these tips to protect yourself.

Never place your purse or bag beside you. This means don't place it on the floor or hanging on the back of the chair. This makes it all too easy to become a victim of purse snatching. Thieves typically work with accomplices. One person will distract you while the other person will grab your purse or bag. Sometimes they don't even need an accomplice. Most people become too focused on the game that they don't even notice the purse coming up and grabbing the purse or bag.

The best way to protect yourself is to keep your purse or bag in your sight at all times. Your lap is a great place to keep it. Even this isn't always foolproof for bolder thieves. So instead of just placing it in your lap, you should put the strap over one shoulder with the strap coming across your chest. This makes it impossible for the thief to make away with your purse without causing a scene.

Safety Deposit Boxes

For security purposes, do not keep your valuables such as money and jewelry lying around in your hotel room. Use the room safe or a safety deposit box to store your valuables. Also, do not carry a lot of money on your person. Use the safety deposit box to store most of your money and only carry what you plan to spend at the table. Going back and forth to the safety deposit box isn't as much of an inconvenience as losing all of your cash.

Chip Thieves

Another popular practice among Las Vegas casino thieves is stilling chips when players are distracted. This happens more frequently at craps tables because the chips are placed on the rail. The term used for these types of thieves is "rail birds". Rail birds, or chip thieves, will nonchalantly grab a chip and casually walk away before you notice any chips are missing. So how do you protect against this? Do it the same way Las Vegas casinos protect their chips.

Ever notice how Las Vegas casinos stack their chips? They keep the higher denominations in the middle and fan out with lower denominations. If you are storing your chips on the rail, place your higher value chips in the middle of lower value chips. If you are at a game where there isn't a rail, place the highest denomination chips on the bottom of your stack and the lowest chips on the top. This makes it more difficult for chip thieves to take a chip that is of a higher denomination.

Dollar Bill Thieves

One practice Las Vegas casino thieves use at slot machines involves taking your money as you put it in. Granted, this works on slot machines that take dollar bills still. This con takes some planning and prep work. Two people have to work this con in order for them to take your money with you are virtually unsuspecting. First the thieves watch the slot machines to see which machines have a higher rate of rejecting bills.

Once they have pinpointed which slot machines are more likely to reject the bills, one person will come sit next to you, perhaps acting as if they are about to play, and strike up a conversation with you as you go to insert your bill. Their timing is impeccable. While distracted, the second person will come up and snatch the dollar as it is spit back out. Of course, when you look down to play you find out that you have no credits. It isn't a malfunctioning machine, it is the fact that you just got conned.

One way to prevent this is don't look away as you are inserting the bill. Also hold your hand there until you see that you have your credits. Having your hand still at the bill slot will make it too difficult for the other person to grab it.

Random Flirting

Be aware of con artists. One of the most popular cons is the con of flirting. A stranger may approach you and shower you with attention and compliments. Before you know it, you have spent most of your money if not all on these flirtatious strangers via drink, chips, or actual cash. Also be aware that escorts and hookers use this technique in Las Vegas casinos all the time in an effort to trick you out of your money by insisting you have to pay them for spending time with you. Just keep in mind that in Sin City, anyone with money is irresistible. They aren't attracted to you they are attracted to your money.

Cashing Out

Some thieves aren't as subtle. Many of them hang out in casinos waiting, watching. They are looking for people who make a big win. Most Las Vegas casinos advise that if you have a big win, then you should request a security escort. This starts when heading to the cage to cash out. Thieves will be following you every where waiting to make their move and steal your winnings. Having security escort you to cash out isn't enough. They need to escort you to your room, the parking lot, or even the restroom if need be. These are popular places for thieves to strike. When it is said that these thieves aren't subtle, it means that some people have been seriously hurt for their winnings.

These tips aren't meant to cause paranoia or panic. They are meant to allow you to be prepared when it comes to protecting yourself, your property, and your money. Nothing ruins a trip to a Las Vegas casino quicker than being a victim of a Las Vegas casino thief.

© 2015 L Sarhan


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    • tlcs profile image

      Trudy Cooper 

      5 years ago from Hampshire, UK

      Great Hub, a friend of mine from the UK visited and was pick pocketed! Not a very happy visit for her.

    • traveleze profile image

      Lee John 

      5 years ago from Preston

      Great hub! i voted up, good tips i wrote a hub on Las Vegas, as most people just think of Las Vegas as Sin city but theres much more to do check it out, any feedback or comments about my work is highly appreciated




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