A casino is a gambling establishment where customers can play games of chance and, in some cases, skill. The games may include card games, dice games, domino games, roulette, poker and slot machines. Some casinos also offer restaurant services and bars. Most casinos are located in cities with large populations, but some are located in rural areas.
According to the American Gaming Association, approximately 51 million people visited a casino in 2002. This number includes domestic as well as foreign visitors. Many of these visitors come from the United States, where the majority of casinos are located. Others come from countries in Europe, Asia and Africa. There are some 3,000 casinos worldwide.
Some casinos are regulated by law, but most operate on a voluntary basis. Casinos employ a variety of security measures. They often have video cameras in the rooms where money is changed, as well as cameras that monitor the crowds for suspicious behavior. They also use electronic devices to supervise the games themselves. For example, the betting chips used in table games have built-in microcircuitry that interacts with tables’ electronics to enable the casino to oversee exactly what is being wagered minute by minute and to quickly detect any anomalies; and roulette wheels are monitored electronically to discover any deviation from their expected results.
Despite these precautions, casino security is a challenging business. Something about the atmosphere of gambling encourages people to cheat, steal or scam their way into a jackpot. That is why casinos spend a great deal of time and money on security.