A casino is a place where people gamble. The modern casino is like an indoor amusement park for adults, with the vast majority of its revenue derived from gambling games such as slot machines, black jack, roulette, craps and keno.
In the 1950s, as the Las Vegas casino industry expanded, many of its owners were in need of funds to finance expansion and renovation. Legitimate businessmen were reluctant to invest in casinos, which had the taint of being associated with organized crime; and mobsters had plenty of cash from drug dealing, extortion and other illegal rackets. Mobster money flowed steadily into Reno and Las Vegas, where casinos were becoming a popular destination for Americans. Some gangsters became so involved that they took sole or partial ownership of several casinos and influenced the outcomes of gambling games with threats to casino personnel.
The large amounts of money handled in casinos make them susceptible to attempts at cheating and stealing, either in collusion with one another or by individual patrons. To reduce these risks, casinos use a wide variety of security measures. For example, video cameras are located throughout casinos to monitor the activity of patrons and employees; specialized chip tracking systems allow a casino to oversee how much money is wagered minute by minute on any game; and roulette wheels and dice are electronically monitored to detect statistical deviations from expected results. Other sophisticated measures include catwalks above casino floors that allow surveillance personnel to look down, through one-way glass, on the activities of table players and slot machine users.