About Us

We believe in a proactive approach to game protection. All of table games and surveillance staffs should be taught why certain policies and procedures are in place and what can happen if they are not followed, which is surprisingly rare in the casino industry. Then they should be held accountable for any infractions. Although we recommend that our clients take this proactive approach, we also offer services when reactive steps are necessary in response to declining house hold (win) percentages and/or suspect play.

Some competitors tried to tell our clients that we sell fear. We’d like to thank them for their concern and correct this misinformation. In reality, we sell knowledge. The most eloquent response we could find is Shakespeare’s Henry VIII, “Things done well, And with a care, exempt themselves from fear: Things done without example, in their issue Are to be fear’d.”

We’ve got it covered! With over 26 years of casino industry experience, UGPD president, Sal Piacente, does Game Protection well and he cares about the quality of the work. His training includes examples of scams, theft, and advantage plays, not only on actual video surveillance footage, but also through live demonstrations, to give the trainees a thorough understanding of the material presented in a way that is relatable to them because he has held their job positions. Even with his extensive knowledge, Piacente is the eternal student, so that UGPD can show its clients the most current threats to casino profitability.

Our Team


Sal Piacente

Sal Piacente is a native of Brooklyn, New York, and the ultimate student of the game. Piacente's interest in con games and scams began on the streets at a young age when his father taught him to protect himself from 3 Card Monte hustlers. He started his casino career as a blackjack dealer in Atlantic City after an honorable discharge from the United States Marine Corps. Sal then worked his way up from dealer to shift manager to game protection specialist, a position created for him by an international casino corporation. Sal Piacente is also an instructor for the University of Nevada, Reno's Gaming Management Certification Program. Piacente has parlayed his experience, skills, passion, and knowledge of the various ways to cheat all casino games into a successful consulting business. Over the past 25 years, Sal has trained and/or consulted for dozens of casinos and regulatory bodies on four continents (and counting), and has demonstrated his amazing manual dexterity on a number of television shows.

While studying card counting, Sal came across memory techniques (mnemonics) used by advantage players and cheats to increase their odds of winning at blackjack. Not only can Piacente perform amazing casino-related mnemonic stunts, but he also teaches others to improve their information retention for everyday life. His memory book collection spans centuries, with his oldest book dating back to the Italian Renaissance. Though Sal “the Hitman” Piacente is a consummate authority on casino scams and memory, his thirst for knowledge is never satisfied.


Dee Piacente

Dee Piacente is the office manager and Secret Shopper services coordinator for UniverSal Game Protection Development, Inc. She began her career as a dealer in Atlantic City and was promoted to floorperson and pit boss positions for casinos in Reno and Las Vegas.

In 1994, while still in Atlantic City, she had the privilege of watching Sal perform live demonstrations at a dealing school where she was studying pai gow poker. Since then, Sal and Dee have been an inseparable force in their professional and personal lives, recently celebrating 11 years of marriage and the 5th anniversary of UniverSal Game Protection Development, Inc.

Television Appearances

© 2023 UniverSal Game Protection Development, Inc. All rights reserved.