How Are Cards Dealt In Online Poker?

snap fast fold version of pokerIt doesn’t need saying because it is so very obvious, but the dealing of cards is absolutely critical to the game of poker. And, if we don’t want the game to be fixed, and we don’t, then the cards need to be shuffled and dealt fairly and evenly to those playing the hand.

In live poker, the dealers use special automatic card shuffling machines which players are able to see. Then the dealer does his dealing. But what about when we play online poker? How do we know the cards there are dealt fairly and randomly?


random numbers across a screen

Online poker sites employ random number generators (RNGs) not dissimilar to those that slots use to drop symbols on to the reels. These work off computerised algorithms in order to fairly shuffle and distribute the cards.

Every suited card in the digital pack is given a unique number and before each poker hand gets underway, a deck or pack is created by the RNG randomly ordering these numbers.

As soon as the pack is ready, the hand is dealt and depending on the game being played, the appropriate amount of cards will dealt to each player.

In actual fact, there are multiple ways that an online poker site can create a deck, either by using a PRNG or a TRNG.


jumbled up random numbersThe first of these is a PRNG which stands for Pseudo Random Number Generator. It gets its name from the fact that the randomness is generated by what is often an extremely complicated algorithm based off a seed value rather than being organically created.

One thing to ensure, however, is that considering not all PRNGs are designed equally, it is important that you ensure that if you are considering playing at an online poker site, you make sure to check their credibility first.

This way you can ensure that their PRNG has been verified.


RandomTrue Random Number Generators, or TRNGs, are the other systems that online poker sites employ to deal their cards.

Rather than rely on algorithms to generate a deck of cards, instead a TRNG works with numerical sequences based on binary code.

In order to come up with their random numbers, these generate random numbers in two steps. Firstly, a ray of light is shot at a piece of translucent glass, the results of which will dictate what happens next. If the light is reflects the number will be a one, if it does not then the number will be a zero.

From there, the system also records and tracks mouse movements and clicks in order to create a second lot of ones and zeros which it then uses to generate a completely random set of ones and zeros from which a pack of 52 cards is created.

Check For Authenticity

At the end of the day, players can only go by a site’s certifications in order to trust them with their money.

Whichever system an online poker site uses to create a deck of cards, all of the big name sites will have been verified and licenced so you know that you can trust their legitimacy.

The best and most trusted poker sites are open and transparent with players about their standards in what is a heavily regulated industry.

Some sites employ independent companies to audit their PRNG once a month, while others send detailed data on their TRNG to a software security management services firm in order to verify that their game is truly random.

Online poker sites are extremely careful when it comes to who in their company gets access to the backend of the system. Anyone who is granted access to the system is prohibited from playing on that site for the sake of fairness. This way you know you are playing a fair game and the rest is up to you.