A casino is a place where people play games of chance (and in some cases skill), and gamble. It may have a wide variety of entertainment options such as musical shows, shopping centers and restaurants, but its primary draw is the gambling. Slot machines, roulette, blackjack and other games of chance provide the billions in profits that casinos rake in each year.

Despite the seamy image that gambling sometimes gets, legitimate businessmen with enough money and deep pockets have stepped in to run casinos. Real estate investors and hotel chains like Donald Trump and Hilton have become major players in the casino industry, buying out mob owners and putting their own people in key positions of power to ensure they’ll run casinos without mob interference.

Security is also a major issue, and a large chunk of the budget at most casino locations is spent on it. Casino employees keep their eyes on patrons to watch out for blatant cheating or other suspicious activities, and each table game has a pit boss or other high-level employee overseeing it. The betting patterns and behavior of the patrons at a particular table follow predictable routines, which makes it easier for security people to spot anything that is out of the ordinary.

Other security measures include random checks of player accounts for large winnings to make sure the casino pays out what they owe, and using electronic monitoring systems to discover any statistical deviation from expected results. Some casinos employ gaming mathematicians or computer programmers to do this kind of work in-house, while others outsource the analysis of their games.