A casino is a place where people can gamble and play games of chance. While musical shows, lighted fountains and hotels may draw in visitors, the billions of dollars raked in by casinos are mostly from games like slot machines, blackjack, roulette, craps, keno, and baccarat. Even though some players are able to win substantial amounts of money, the majority of casino patrons will lose. That is why casinos spend a huge amount of time and effort on security.
Modern casinos are usually divided into two separate departments, physical security and a specialized surveillance department. Physical security patrols the casino and responds to calls for help, reports of suspicious or definite criminal activity and operates closed circuit television (CCTV). The specialized surveillance department, often referred to as the eye in the sky, is what allows casinos to see everything that happens on their property in real-time.
Almost every country in the world has casinos. In the United States they first appeared in Atlantic City, New Jersey and later on American Indian reservations where state antigambling laws were not in force. Then, in the 1980s, they began appearing in a number of other states.
Casinos make money by encouraging players to play and they reward good gamblers with comps. These are free goods or services a player receives for gambling, such as hotel rooms, meals, show tickets and sometimes airline tickets or limo service. Many casinos also offer Winners Banks, devices that allow winning players to lock away their money until they return to the table and try again. This can encourage discipline and keep people from pushing their luck until they reach the limit of their budget.