A casino is a place where people can gamble on games of chance. Modern casinos look like an indoor amusement park for adults, but the vast majority of their revenue is generated by gambling machines, blackjack, roulette, baccarat and craps. These machines and tables require very little skill or strategy, so players are unlikely to win unless they hit on an incredibly lucky streak.

Despite this, something about gambling seems to encourage cheating and other schemes designed to tilt the odds in favor of the house. That’s why casinos spend so much money and effort on security. Casino security begins on the gaming floor, where employees keep an eye on patrons to make sure that everything is going as it should. Dealers are highly trained and can spot blatant tactics such as palming cards or marking dice. They’re also supervised by “higher-up” personnel who can watch them from a room filled with banks of security monitors.

As casinos have grown in popularity, they’ve moved away from their mob-era roots. Real estate investors and hotel chains now run most of them, and they have deep enough pockets to buy out the mobsters. Federal crackdowns on organized crime and the risk of losing a casino’s license at the slightest hint of mafia involvement means that mobsters can’t easily take over. However, many of them remain involved in casinos as owners or investors. They’re especially interested in the lucrative Asian casino market, which is growing rapidly thanks to a growing middle class in China and other parts of Asia.