Chess Cheating: Red Flags When Playing Online
Cheat, cheating, cheaters

Chess Cheating: Red Flags When Playing Online


What to watch for on and other chess sites.

1. Disabled Chat- Not saying everyone who disables chat is a cheat, however, if one does, it should raise a red flag for you. Cheaters don't like to be accused of cheating and someone incessantly writing about how they are cheating will annoy them while they cheat and they don't like to hear it so it's possible that the cheater disabled their chat for this very reason. It might also be psychological for the cheater to believe they are "hiding" by disabling chat while they are cheating. Of course, some people just don't like to be bothered, but you should still be wary of this and with what I have dealt with so far you may as well just be better off aborting the game as soon as you see "chat disabled."

2. Time Intervals- If a player is moving at the same speed for every one of their moves, chances are they may be cheating. Human beings don't move at the same time intervals when making moves. If every move they make is an accurate one and their time interval for each move is .40, .40, .42, .39 etc., this should raise a red flag. 

3. End of Game Analysis- It's always a good idea at the end of every game to analyze the game. Players with a real high percentage after a game may raise a red flag. It's not necessarily the case, however, if you're playing someone with a very low rating and every move they make is spot on with hardly any mistakes they could be cheating you. Judge for yourself. If you believe the person you are playing is making "computeresque moves" it might be a good idea to report it and let the people at take a look at it. 

4. Low Rating With Bobby Fischer Precision- If a player has a low rating and they are moving with Bobby Fischer like precision chances are they are cheating. A good example of this is a game where they are constantly putting any or all of your pieces in jeopardy, no matter where you move them and their captures result in possibly putting two of your pieces in jeopardy or worse. Cheaters look to cash in big getting big points playing higher rated opponents so cheating to get big points is a juicy temptation. If the rating doesn't fit you should tell 'em to quit! And report it! 

5. Disconnecting- If a player is disconnecting from the game and coming back in again and again they might be leaving the game to "Google" or use a chess computer, type in the game piece coordinates, get their answer and come back and make their computer accurate move. Of course not all who disconnect are cheaters. Some may have bad connections, but you should be wary of this. 

6. Playing Against Their Computer While Playing You- It's hard to spot, but cheaters do it. What the cheater does is a play against the computer and uses the computer's moves as his own moves to play against you. An example of this is that if you are on Offense (white) the cheater will play the computer as offense and use the computer's Defense (black) moves against you. Best way to watch for this is the "time intervals" that were discussed in item 2. 

7. Taking Too Much Time To Make Second Opening Move- Most chess players know what they want to do in their opening moves so taking too much time between their first and second move could be a good indication of cheating. For instance, if "Sicilian Defense" is played by Black your opponent may go offline to look up a counter attack for that. Some may think that's not cheating, but it is. It's the same as looking inside a textbook to find the answer during a test. Be wary of people who do this.

In closing, if you suspect someone is cheating block and report them and let take a look at it. They look at all the reports and analyze if the person is cheating. If they are, they may suspend their account. 

Don't Cheat! It's not worth it and it does nothing to help you learn the game. You're only cheating yourself when you cheat.