A very wise man once said, “Don’t play poker with strangers, they don’t care how good you are.” This is true in many ways, but to defend yourself from being cheated by strangers you must define who a stranger actually is. Is a person brought to the game by a friend considered a stranger? How do you know if a friend is not capable of cheating? How do you determine what to do if a player is truly an honest player and just wants in on a game?
Obviously, it is up to the people in the game to determine whether or not to allow somebody that they don’t know very well to step in the game and play. They should determine, from a vote or discussion, if strangers should or should not be invited to play in their poker games. It would be improper and hypocritical to deny an honest stranger the right to play in a game where a friend who has been known to cheat is playing.
If you and your friends are considering whether or not to let strangers enter your home game, then I encourage you to to consider this. Let them play, but don’t do so until your group has read and are aware of the many different ways to cheat at poker that have been described on this site. Allowing your group to be ignorant about poker cheats may cost you money and the only way to prevent that loss is to know what to look for at the table.