I am talking here about informatical robots that will make some operations without any human interaction.

You can find many stories about poker robots that play without anyone behind the computer on online cash poker site. Each time is explained that their account were closed because the site chart say it is forbidden, and that player who played against the robot got their money back. But I never heard about one of thoses robots creator being sued. Is this illegal to violate thoses charts? Or only the site's operator can close the account and it can't go to court?

(I took the example of poker but video games are facing similar problem : thousands of accounts level uped with bots and then sell on E-Bay or other websites.)

So is this illegal and one man can have to pay a bill, or is this forbidden only on the website? Is this the same reglementation for Europe and America?

1 Answer 1


I don't think the issue is that it is a violation of a law, but rather that it is a violation of the terms of service you agree to when you sign up for the site - which is a breach of contract.

You can be sued for breach of contract, if the site can prove any damages based on your breach. So if you use a bot to make money on a site, in violation of the site's license agreement, then I believe the site could indeed sue you to get the money back.

Also, the phrasing of your question ("creating a robot") raises a separate issue. It is not actually creating the bot that is illegal, but using it where not allowed can be a violation of contract. Suppose person A makes a poker bot, just as a programming exercise, and doesn't use it. But then suppose person B uses the robot created by person A on a site that forbids it. Although this could be a gray area, I do not believe the site would have any recourse against person A (even though they probably would against person B).

  • Breaching a contract is breaking the law - it may not be an offence, but it is still illegal.
    – Dale M
    Aug 4, 2016 at 20:29
  • What I meant was, "I don't think there is specifically a general law against making poker bots." Thank you for the clarification.
    – SegNerd
    Aug 5, 2016 at 16:38
  • Blizzard (creators of World of Warcraft) successfully sued the creator of a program used to cheat in the game. kitguru.net/gaming/matthew-wilson/…
    – Brian R
    Jan 7, 2019 at 21:50

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