Land-based casinos vs. online casinos

Home Land-based casinos vs. online casinos


Audrey MollyAudrey Molly | Päivitetty: 17.05.2020

In a society where options are endless and limitations are non-existent, gambling is available to everyone, from the high-roller to the senior citizen. The intimidation factor which has been established by traditional brick-and-mortar casinos remains eminent; however, the option of an online variant has appealed to many. With all the information accessible to players who are uncertain about the rules, terms, and protocols of play on an online casino, it’s clear as to why this has become a popular option.

Virtual and brick-and-mortar casinos present prospects which hold exclusive benefits to both of them. The brick-and-mortar casino gifts players the famed ambience with its high-paced betting environment in which many players enjoy, this is something that a web-based casino cannot contend with. As the sound of laughter, slots, and jargon will remain everlasting. However, the convenience of an online casino is what makes it so popular, as players are able to access these sites on their computers and phones. This makes gambling 24/7 easier than ever. Online casinos have become increasingly well-known for their variety of games which usually eclipses that which land-based casinos have to offer.

The security of online casinos has been questioned since they were established, and the general myth that they’re unsafe is rooted to players which have not received funds which were meant to be paid to them. It is, however, safe to say that online casinos are as secure as land-based casinos. A valid online casino has to meet various safety standards before they are deemed fit to operate.

Many players believe that online casinos are more prone to have them develop a gambling addiction than what a land-based casino would. This myth can easily be dismissed as both casino variants have the potential to be addictive, whereas it is the players' responsibility to ensure that they gamble responsibly. Due to certain parameters placed on online casinos, such as betting and deposit limits, it is easier for players to be supervised and prevent addiction. Another safety net is the option of excluding oneself from an online casino for a set amount of time or even permanently. This draws the conclusion that it may be easier for players to spiral out of control at a land-based casino.

Many players believe that there are methods to increase one’s chances of winning, especially when it comes to video slots. With the sheer amount of video slots available, each and every one uses a Random Number Generator. The RNG puts every myth to bed as its purpose is to ensure that every game that is played is fair and that the casino enforces complete morality in gambling. The RNG is not limited to video slots, as games such as slot machines, video poker, roulette, craps, and many other casino games. With the myths of technique and other gambling strategies out the window, the players can rest assured knowing that the RNG makes every spin inimitable and different.

More often than not, players claim to have found the perfect strategy on both land-based and online casinos by judging whether the slot machine is hot or cold to the touch. They believe that the warmer the better, and this would result in a payout. The temperature of a slot machine is not a factor and it has no effect on the RNG whatsoever as it would continue to generate numbers at random, regardless of its operating temperature. This myth has been deemed void yet players continue to find comfort at land-based casinos due to the physical feel of pulling the arm of the reel over the act of clicking a button. It is also a common myth that your chances would be higher if you go to a land-based casino due to slot machines operating under the influence of time rather than a random sequence of numbers. Both online and land-based casino wins are purely random and there are no factors that influence either.

An incredibly popular myth, which may also be a dangerous one, is that the longer you spend on a machine, the higher your chances are of winning that grand prize you’ve been chasing. Players would often commit hours of their time to one machine believing that it would be a matter of time before it pays out, this couldn’t be less true as the game operates under the RNG. Gamblers also believe that it is impossible for a slot machine to pay out more than one jackpot in a short timeframe, again, this is incorrect. Slot machines could pay out several jackpots one after the other, this is highly unlikely, however; it is possible due to the unpredictability of the game. Another myth is that after a player has played a game for a long time and another player wins after they have abandoned it, is that the latter player has won because they deserved it more. There is no set period of time where a slot machine will pay out, it is all up to chance and that is why it is called gambling.

It is common to hear players complain about how casinos are rigged in favour of casino bosses and how the games have been tampered with in order to reduce payout proportions and probabilities. This myth is easily dismissed due to computer processors located within slot machines which dictate the payouts. There is no method of hacking this system or changing the results of the game without being caught or compromising the overall functionality of the slot machine itself.

Online casinos do not payout

Myth #1 – Online casinos don't pay

The Truth - It is incredibly important to do thorough research before diving into an online casino. This should be a law, as having a safe and trustworthy online gambling experience relies on the amount of research you have done. Finding a reputable casino that will pay out your winnings when you have remained within the set terms and conditions is a big aspect of your overall choice. A common myth which goes amongst players is that online casinos are not profitable. This is purely incorrect as if a player were to be gambling through a trustworthy casino with a solid reputation, this would certainly not be the case. Casinos which are approved and controlled have to employ proficient software and appropriate payment processors. A basic requirement for online casinos is that they have to deploy a strong user identification process. This means that players are required to verify their identity before casinos are able to cash out their winnings. Failure to comply with or pass the identification process would result in the player's cash out request being denied. Under the law of the Gambling Commission which needs a casino to be licensed, the players’ winnings are not guaranteed to be paid out. There are certain legal duties casinos have to their players, which under the Gambling Act 2005; gambling debts have become enforced by law.

A common complaint which has been raised against many online casinos is that they don’t pay. Obviously, this makes many gamblers very cautious as their sole reason for gambling is the exhilaration and ecstasy of winning. Online casinos have the right to refuse the payout of winnings; this is usually due to the case of suspected fraud and to ensure the overall safety of their players. Thus, it is vital that players read and understand the terms of conditions before jumping to the conclusion that online casinos are not legitimate.

The fact that this very myth exists is not in the least surprising, there are many articles published which claim live casinos were declining the pay out of jackpot wins to their customers with the apparent reason being due to technical defects on the machines. It is an accepted response for players to believe that the same would apply to online casinos. If gamblers were to find themselves playing at a casino with a stellar reputation and they made a withdrawal request, it is possible for them to experience problems if they have breached security or certain terms and conditions.

If a player were to sign up for a new account using a fake payment method and information, the casino has the right to refuse to pay out until the player is able to confirm that the information they have provided is indeed true. This does not make the myth any truer as players are expected to meet certain requirements, one of them being able to verify who they are to the casino. Finding a casino to play in is important if you want to have a pleasant experience and is guaranteed to receive your winnings on time. The casino you choose has to be licensed under proper authority and have terms and conditions that are easy for you to understand as many players often fail to do so which results in numerous complaints and accusations of illegitimacy.

The myth that casinos do not pay is often due to players not understanding the strict terms and conditions which have been set by the casino. Players need to respect and obey them and if these terms and conditions are dishonoured, players may not receive their winnings. This is a common scenario and a legitimate casino would usually return the players deposit or in some instances decide to pay out their winnings; this would also be accompanied with a ban from their casino. As long as players thoroughly read through the terms and conditions, they should never experience any issues with the casino.

No online casino is the same, each has its own set of rules and procedures when paying out to players and they each do so at their own set pace. This information can easily be found in the terms and conditions, which again, is very important to read before investing any money to evade dissatisfaction. Understanding the time frame of each payment option is something that players should make an effort to do as some payment methods such as credit cards and web wallets have return requests which may be processed with immediate effect. However, payment methods such as checks and wire transfers may take longer to process, this is due to the casino needing more time to complete added verification steps. Casinos reserve the right to request more identification documents from the player if they become suspicious of fraudulent activity before the approval of a cash-out request. This may occur due to a player's first withdrawal exceeding the limit of a certain amount. When it comes to bonuses, casinos have another set of criteria that would have to be met. Once a player accepts a bonus from a casino after making a deposit, the bonus would carry a playthrough requirement. What this means is that the player would need to through a set amount of money before being able to request a withdrawal. This requirement is usually observed in the account of the player or by the means of live help. The withdrawal request may be declined and all winnings, as well as the bonus, may be lost if the wagering requirements are not met.

Adequate research is required to ensure peace of mind with regards to your winnings being paid out to you, you will get exactly what was assured when choosing a reputable casino, and that is, of course, your noteworthy winnings. Trustworthy gameplay and pay-out ethics are attained by ensuring that your choice of casino is regulated. A legitimate software provider is equally as important as the casino, too. RTP percentages are a factor which should be noted as they can be viewed on all casino games which are recorded by auditors.

There is no proof to support the myth that online casinos do not pay out winnings. Though it has an origin which cannot be placed, there is a simple method of ensuring that you always receive your winnings, that is to read the terms and conditions of every casino and ensure that you understand them and remain well within their guidelines. When winnings are not received, it is usually because the terms and conditions have been breached.

Money laundering and offshore companies

Myth #2 – Money Laundering is more prominent at online casinos vs. land-based casinos

Another myth is that money laundering is more vulnerable to online casinos than their land-based counterparts. There is no evidence to support this myth and it could not be further from the truth. Due to the absence of anonymity in online casinos, it is highly improbable that money laundering may occur. There have been no official cases to back up these claims, thus dispelling the myth.

The truth – Claims of unscrutinised electronic fund transfers are being exploited in online gambling have been making their rounds. There have been alleged reports of criminals taking advantage of online casinos to launder great amounts of money. According to a study conducted by a US GAO, it is reported that online gambling was not viewed as being vulnerable to money laundering, especially because credit cards are subjected to limits which are relatively low and are certain to create a record of the transaction. Both credit card and gaming industry administrators did not believe that Internet gambling was prone to money laundering.

Online gambling and money laundering were significantly discussed in 2011. United States v Scheinberg was filed by the U.S Attorney for the Southern District of New York, as the founding creators of the leading online gambling companies in the world were put on trial, due to alleged financial misconduct and money laundering. The well-known companies in question were allegedly fronts and storehouses of illicit funds. A number of their acquaintances were tangled in the case as well. It is claimed that the culprits in question supposedly dishonoured the Unlawful Gambling Enforcement Act and that they were involved in not only bank fraud but various other heinous acts of financial crime. Regulations and laws of the global legal framework for Internet gambling have been seen as intricate. Claims made by law enforcement agencies stating that online gambling could be used to launder money, whereas other parties have deemed the risk a lot less serious than what it actually is. It has also been stated due to the secrecy and jurisdictional issues which online gambling present, it could make the process a prevailing tool for money launderers. It was later verified that very few money laundering cases involved online gambling and as a consequence, only a few have actually been impeached. The lack of judged cases against online gambling and money laundering have been recognised by law enforcement officials and due to the absence of industry protocols and basic error. Claims that online gambling was more vulnerable to money laundering than other forms of e-commerce were not taken seriously by the credit card company, gaming industry officials and governing agencies. Various opinions were expressed by governing agencies, gaming industry officials, and credit card companies with regards to the susceptibility of money laundering as they were under the impression that if traditional forms of payment such as credit cards were eliminated, it could increase concerns of money laundering. It is believed by law enforcement officials that due to the speed, volume, international reach of Internet transactions, and the fact that a lot of online gambling websites are located offshore, this could increase the likelihood of money laundering, but the reality is that only a few cases have been escalated to an unlawful case. The term “offshore” has received a relatively bad reputation over the years, with images of tax havens and financial institutions being a financial fairground for various criminal elements, located in small island states of the Caribbean or European territories. It is, however, correctly defined as commercialization of authority.

It is believed by the Treasury Enforcement that one of the main reasons that online gambling is susceptible to various means of financial crime, such as tax evasion, is due to the location of gambling sites being in ranges with weak supervisory management or even none of them. A noteworthy concern has been raised regarding attempts to evade credit card coding systems by means of factoring by a number of gaming agents. In suitable circumstances, factoring can be used as a prime step in carrying through the act of money laundering, as it is used to mask the true origin of the funds and how they were procured from law enforcement and regulatory officials.

When it comes to online gambling and money laundering, the FBI has their own opinions on it. According to them, money laundering can be implemented through authentic or complicit online casinos. Another claim they made was that legitimate online casinos present an opening to transfer large amounts of money in and out of accounts within a sole organisation. Their concerns lie in the event of an individual deciding to deposit illicit funds into an authentic online gambling account under a false name. The said individual could then continue to wager small amounts to make it seem as if the account was indeed genuine to the website operators. After a few small losses, the individual could then withdraw the remainder of the illicit funds from their account, this would register the transaction’s history as a legal online gambling transaction, as a result, this would mix the illicit and legitimate money. It may also be suspected that an authentic online gambling account could be used to simply store illicit funds, as a money launderer would not be required to do any gambling in order to complete the laundering. An authentic gaming account could be used as a storehouse for funds until they’ve been laundered and transferred into an offshore bank account. This could be done by means of finding several authentic online casinos which had very few or no deposit requirements. The money launderer would then proceed to deposit the maximum amount in one or more of the fraudulent accounts and later withdraw them and they could be transferred into an offshore account. This would look as if it were lawful winnings at a casino rather than a suspicious transaction. Authorities also believe that money launderers could create their own online casinos for the primary purpose of money laundering. The site operators could supposedly program the site to respond to sign-on commands and passwords, which could instantly take a fraction of the deposit that is made and then concealing it as a gambling loss. This would also mean that this loss would be the operators' provision fee for laundering “dirty money” and that a site such as the one in question would require authentic players to hide the real purpose of the process.

There are many claims and beliefs regarding money laundering and offshore establishments according to law enforcement officials. The same views were not shared by gaming industry companies and banking and regulatory officials, this is due to credit cards generating transaction records or “paper trails” when used, they are then subject to low transaction restrictions. The acceptance of any specific risks concerning money laundering is denied by these companies due to their belief that their comprehensive anti-money laundering program and programming system eliminates possible money laundering through online gambling. The program rules out the myth as it gives issuers control over all gambling transactions as it was designed to address risks such as money laundering. The only flaw in the program is that it does not allow issuers to block transactions that are not programmed properly.

The gaming industry officials are under the impression that online gambling is not more prone to money laundering than any other e-commerce business. The financial industry responsible for the payments system is, however; better suited to monitor any relative distrustful activity on the website rather than the gaming industry itself.

Although there are various opinions that associate money laundering with online gambling, the facts outshine those views due to the lack of evidence to support the notion. However, there will always be the possibility of online gambling companies with ill intentions; adequate research is required before committing to any of these companies.

Gambling online is illegal

Myth #3 – Gambling online is illegal.

The truth – Various reports have done their rounds questioning the legitimacy of online gambling, and so many of them claim that it is illegal. While this myth has been deemed false as there is no U.S federal law against gambling online, it does have the potential to prevent many people from playing their favourite games and even prevent potential players from signing up. Players can rest assured knowing that they may place bets online to their heart's content without breaking any laws, although the rumours which have gone around were conjured due to the legalities which surround the operations and advertising of a site that accepts bets. U.S Attorney Catherine Hanaway acknowledged that there are no violations of federal law taking place when placing a bet online. No U.S citizen has been incarcerated, indicated, or prosecuted by federal agents for online gambling. Simply as there is no law against it, all this was stated during a House Hearing in 2001.

Due to the sheer complexity of gambling laws and regulations, even veteran gamblers may find themselves confused. Players would be required to dwell deeper into the online laws by trying to comprehend them on a state by state basis; this means that the gambling laws themselves may vary due to a player’s location. With the differences in the legality of making and taking bets and also in enabling payments to online casinos and promotion on websites. With constant new legal challenges arising, there are bound to be more legal battles in the future.

The only occasion U.S players may find themselves at the wrong end of the law when gambling online would be when placing bets on sports games. Fines are issued to those who receive profits from sports betting due to a result of alleged illegal gambling activities online. There is but one specific case back in 2003 where Jeffery Trauman of North Dakota got into trouble for gambling, the accused was issued a $500 fine when he won over $100,000.00 in online sports betting.

It is vital for players to keep in mind that it is just a myth that placing bets online will result in legal repercussions. The best pieces of advice any player will receive, to prevent any issues with the law, is to read the terms and conditions of every single online gambling site you choose to play at. By ensuring that you are playing within the legal guidelines of the casino’s terms and conditions, another vital piece of information you will need to procure is to find out whether it is legal to gamble online in the country of which the casino is licensed in. It would be a good idea to review their procedures, just to ensure that you would have no legal trouble with the casino which you have chosen.

In the U.S, it is illegal for websites to accept sports wagers online but this is only applicable to sports as there is no federal law which dictates the illegality of accepting casino and poker bets.

By operating under an appropriate license which is authorised by the country of which the casino operates in it eradicates the risk of breaching any laws. No tangible evidence was used to support the myth that online gambling is illegal. There are, however; legalities which strictly surround the ability to accept bets and marketing implemented by online casinos. By abiding the laws which govern the conditions of the casino, there will be no worries of breaching any federal laws.

There are parts of the United States which still refuse to grant online gambling licenses to online casinos, and this is what causes many people to believe that it is indeed illegal to gamble online in the United States. Due to the inability to receive an online gambling license in some states, most of the more popular online casinos are located and licensed outside of the country. Players from the United States are accepted as members. It is also claimed that due to search engines such as Bing and Google being unable to accept advertisements for online casinos, this could be the reason as to why players from the United States who are visiting various sites may be under the impression that online gambling is prohibited by the law in their country.

The fact remains that players from the U.S are still accepted by site operators and online casinos. Financial parties which operate internationally have continued to process the transactions of these players. With the factual indication of the overall legality towards online gambling continuously changing, there have been a few attempts to declare gambling online illegal. For the time being, citizens of the U.S who simply place bets online are on the right side of the law. Players who are keen on trying may rest assured knowing that it is merely a myth that online gambling is illegal. The only legal consequences will be a result of your own actions. Potential players have the responsibility to ensure and provide evidence that they are of the legal age to gamble which is usually 18 or 21 years of age, in some instances it is different, depending on your region and to which country the casino you are planning to use is licensed in. The terms and conditions will reveal this information to you and if you qualify to use it. Another important factor would be to use payment methods which are applicable to the casino of your choice and that they are valid and operating under your name when placing your bets online. To be safe, also make sure that you are not participating in any sports betting, this does not matter if it is online or with your mobile phone. If players stick to these rules, they can be confident that their gambling activities are legal.

The legislation of the European Union operates differently when gambling online is involved. A favour of a report was voted for by the European Parliament on November 15th, 2011. The said report argues for better cooperation in the regulation of online gambling across the European Union. Due to the non-existence of the European legislation, member states are able to control this complex area quite differently. Many of them chose to impose these limits on international operators’ activities, thereby prohibiting cross-border trades. It is broadly recognised that those limitations will conflict the freedom provided by the European Union law and online gambling. The United Kingdom has been in view of the introduction of limitations on online gambling since the report has been issued.

The software on online casinos is rigged

Myth #4 – The software on online casinos is rigged.

An infamous myth regarding online gambling, which has been ongoing since the dawn of online casinos, is that the software being used in online casinos is rigged. There have been numerous wild claims from players, stating that the software is programmed in order to ensure that they will never win, which would result in surging profits to the benefit of the casino. Players also believe that they are not treated fairly. This is a myth that is hard to both prove and disprove, but the fact remains that it is very important to stick with reputable casinos due to the fact that the possibility of there being some dishonest casinos looking to make some quick cash is probable. It is a big accusation to make and there remains no evidence to support these serious claims. There are scams which litter the Internet that are tied to all industries and due to the rise of internet popularity; the rise of online scams is likely to go through the roof. The misconception of online casinos being a scam is not uncommon, however; this is quite far from the truth. Players should approach an online casino with the same level of confidence when making an online transaction or when placing a bet as they would at land-based casino.

There are various reasons as to why online casinos would never be rigged. The most well-known reason is the infamous house edge. Majority of online casino games are designed in a way that the actual casino holds an advantage over the players. Regardless of which online game you select to play, as each game which is offered by the casino features the so-called house edge. Some of the advantages are large and some are quite small, this does eliminate the need to rig software or cheat, as they already enter the game with an advantage over the player. This ensures that they always make a profit. Assuming an online casino wanted to start cheating and rigging their games, they would be taking a huge risk, as the possibility of losing loyal clients would increase dramatically. They would also run the risk of losing their operating license and be shut down as well as all of their legal profits. Although online casinos do have the house edge, this primarily ensures that they continue to make a profit in order to remain in operation; this still does not validate any accusations of utilizing rigged software. The games are fair enough for players to get lucky and win, if the house edge were to be removed from the equation, online casinos would cease to operate.

Licensing is another important factor to consider when choosing an online casino, this could also be used to determine whether or not a casino is using rigged software. Online gambling websites will always be officially licensed by governing parties. This demands that they are usually examined on a monthly basis. The licensed parties implement intense scrutinizing on everything from overall fairness of the operating casino games, RTP percentages, and the speed of which a casino pays out to their clientele. An authentic casino with a good reputation will often list information gathered by the auditors and post it on their website. Statistics and the date of which the last review of the casino was done will be included. If it is discovered that the casino was using rigged software, they would ultimately have their operating license revoked and be shut down. The standards of service which a licensed casino has to abide by are incredibly stringent which also goes hand-in-hand with the regulatory guidelines which need to be followed.

With the current list of online casinos growing in number, there are numerous options for players to choose from, but when it comes to software providers and developers, there are a lot fewer of them. Software developers create everything from the overall design of the website to the Random Number Generators. This makes it impossible for casinos to rig any of their games and decrease the odds of players winning. Random Number Generators are used by casinos to always enforce fair play and to put the mind of the player at ease, reputable casinos constantly have these systems audited by external entities. Players are also able to read the results of every audit as it will be made available to the public on casino websites. The corporations who develop these systems boast immense wealth and they are the only ones able to rig games to make them unfair.

The fear of clients taking legal action against online casinos is a good reason as to why casinos would refrain from using rigged software. The risk of being slapped with a prison sentence if they are caught cheating their clients poses a high risk which ultimately poses little to no reward whatsoever. Any well-established casino would think twice before committing malpractice.

People may question themselves on how to avoid becoming a target of professional misconduct; especially because there remains a number of disreputable online casinos that could be using rigged software. There is a straightforward solution to this dilemma which is to online use trustworthy casinos. The vast majority of top online casinos around the globe utilize well-known, award-winning software developers to produce safe and reliable online casino games for their gambling sites. It is vital that you look for popular names such as, Dragonfish, Novomatic, and Evolution Gaming when searching for an online casino to play in. This should be a key factor in your decision-making process because these brands usually display important information on the overall fairness as well as additional information about the developers themselves. This could be found under the terms and conditions or at the bottom of the homepage of the online casino which you have chosen. A common red flag is when the casino of your choice displays no information about the software developers which develop their games or fairness of the games which the casino offers; this lack of information should dissuade any player from considering that said casino.
There is no concrete evidence to suggest that online casinos do not use rigged software regardless of the aforementioned facts and reasons. This is because there are many fraudulent online casinos still operating as we speak. Players need to be aware of the set criteria of any reputable casino as well as to make a conscious effort to find the statistics of the most recent audit. Software providers should also be researched to ensure that they are reputable and are held to a high standard. Reading user feedback and reviews is always a good idea, as this will provide further insight by means of a fresh perspective at the hands of another users’ experience. These could be found on online forums and independent online casino websites. If players are taking their time and doing all the necessary research to find the right online casino, they should have very little to worry about. Always take myths, complaints, and any other outrageous statements with a pinch of salt, as it is always possible that the information given to you was by another player who went on a rant of frustration after losing a lot of money.

Can anyone help me when I’m gambling online?

Myth #5 – When gambling online, you are on your own.

The truth – It is a common misconception for the player to believe that casinos can get away with anything without being pressed with legal action. Another myth is that many players are also under the assumption that they are less likely to receive any form of support online than what they would in a brick-and-mortar casino. Each casino is held accountable for their actions and players should not believe that they are alone as there are many institutions and programs offered by the casino which offer sanctuary to those should they find themselves in distress. Most trustworthy online casinos offer a variety of support options aimed at helping players. The type of support options will vary depending on the casino themselves. If players are in need of assistance with the games which the casinos offer, each casino will have a thorough guide which gives a detailed explanation on how to play each game. These guides are commonly found under the help section.

Online casinos generally offer help and easy to understand solutions to either technical or account-based queries. These answers are found under the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) section within the help page of their sites. The FAQ section is a compilation of the most popular questions asked presented with answers, this provides a sense of convenience. It is vital for players to check the FAQ list before making any form of live contact with the casino’s customer support centre, this would free up a lot of your time and dispel any need of further assistance. If you do not find the solution to your problem under the FAQ list, there are other means of requesting help.

The live chat service is the most efficient and popular form of online help a casino could offer. This service is usually offered in most legitimate online casinos with the odd exception of a few which would provide other means of live communication. The great part of the live chat service is that they generally operate 24/7 with the almost immediate response time. There are some casinos which have a closing time for their live chat service which is usually between midnight and eight in the morning. The operating times will be provided by the casino. Security and financial questions are usually sent via email, this is another method which is available to players.

Email support is easy to use, however; it is not always the most efficient means of communication due to a lack of instant answers. Once again, there will be various opening times for each casino’s email support, with other online casinos offering 24/7 assistance. With a specified timeframe for responses, it will obviously vary depending on which casino you are using. An online email form may also be available to some players where a message can be sent directly to the casino by means of their site. The message system can either operate from your casino account or your external personal email.

Telephone support and communication via fax are the least popular forms of online support. Due to the high cost of international calls, it is uncommon for players to use this form of support. Fax machines are outdated and present long response times which players are not going to be too thrilled about. However, some casinos do offer support by means of Skype which can also be seen as one of the more swift and convenient methods of communication.
If players are dissatisfied with the outcome after dealing with the casino, they may refer their issues to a third-party supervisory body organisation, such as eCOGRA. The eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance are a London-based globally qualified testing agency and player protection and standards organisation. Established in 2003 in the United Kingdom, eCOGRA introduced the opening official self-regulation program to the Internet gambling industry. The organisations compliance actions are fixated on various policy objectives which include but are not limited to, the safety of vulnerable clients, fighting criminal behaviour, quick and precise customer payouts, a pledge to customer fulfilment and assistance, and protected and dependable operational environments.

eCOGRA has an Alternative Dispute Resolution Service, which is an unbiased settlement service for disputes. Players who are having trouble with an eCOGRA-approved site may contact them for assistance. Before a player can file a complaint against an online casino to eCOGRA, there are a number of measures that need to be followed. The most important step is that the player needs to be sure that the casino is an accredited seal holder on the eCOGRA website and will have to file a dispute with eCOGRA if the casino is not listed. There is a two-week timeframe of which the player has the responsibility of trying to resolve the dispute with the casino, only after two weeks, with no success, will the player be able to contact eCOGRA. Players have the responsibility of trying to broker a deal and will be unable to deal with eCOGRA if they have been suspected of criminal or fraudulent behaviour or if they have attempted to open numerous accounts with the casino in question. All information that has been given to eCOGRA as well as the status of the dispute is requested to be treated as confidential. This means that the player is under no means allowed to go to any other third-party organisation or to post the current status of the dispute on any online forum, if any of these conditions are breached, the claim will be dismissed and deemed an irregularity. A clear and concise summary of the problem needs to be submitted by players wanting to file a complaint. Once a claim is submitted, eCOGRA will contact the player within two business days and provide regular updates on the claim every week. A mediation process is involved in attempts to resolve the dispute. Players need to note that eCOGRA has no authority to direct the outcome of the negotiation. eCOGRA is available to players worldwide and those residing in the UK.

Players are also able to pursue assistance from licensing authorities and additional associate sites such as Casino Top, ThePogg, Casinomeister, and Gambling Grumbles. These sites will have precise grievance measures in place which the casino will proceed to mediate with the casino managers and attempt to procure an outcome which will benefit both parties. It is not unheard of to have both parties happy after a grievance and these organisations know just how to do that. The above-mentioned services do in fact present evidence that players are able to seek assistance whilst gambling online.

Online gambling and taxes

Players need to understand that it is necessary for them to obey their local laws when online gambling and taxes are considered. Tax laws solely depend on the location of the player and can vary, especially when the player lives within or outside the European Union. It is easy for players to be under the impression that online gambling is completely masked and that withdrawals can be done anonymously, that is definitely not the case. When gambling online, it is vital to comprehend the laws of your region with regards to online gambling taxes. It often baffles players and those looking to start gambling online when the thought of whether tax should be paid or not comes to mind. Gambling creates billions of dollars in the form of tax revenues and casual gamblers need to be aware that their winnings are completely taxable and, by law, must be reported in the form of tax returns. Winnings from raffles, live horse racing, national lotteries, online and land-based casinos, cash winnings, and the current market value of prizes from items such as vehicles and even the overall cost of a holiday can count as gambling income. We often come across articles and news reports of people being charged for tax evasion and that they owe the IRS thousands of dollars. When they are confronted and asked to provide a reason as to why they are in a prison cell, the majority of these people claim to have had no idea that they were meant to pay taxes on various things, thus it is important to educate yourself as a player on exactly what you need to pay taxes for.

Countries within the European Union have altered the taxation of gambling prizes from the year 2012 when the Minister of Finance proposed this in his annual budget speech on February 23rd, 2011. From April 1st, 2012 and onward, all players must state all of their winnings which exceed $1600. According to the Minister of Finance, these winning include and are not limited to those acquired from National Lotteries, which would be exposed to a total 15 percent of withholding tax. However, the minister did not specify how the tax was meant to be collected, which periods to take into account for general calculation, and how winnings were affected by losses and whether the losses will be able to be off-set in contrast to winnings. A complete overview of the situation with regards to the taxation of winnings coming from gambling and it contains important information for all 27 nations in the European Union; this was provided by the European Association for the Study of Gambling. Various rules for winnings from casinos to those acquired in from sports betting or national lotteries. There are large differences which may exist in different countries and different rules may be applicable to different provinces.

An important factor which developed from the report is that most nations within the European Union showed that it is the supplier which pays tax, and the tax itself is not related to the winnings, it is, however; taxed on profits and incomes. There are situations whereas players would be required to pay the tax, but the tax which is to be paid is regarded as a form of income tax and not a tax on winnings.

A number of tax-related problems have arisen due to the variety of national approaches to online gambling. To be specific, these issues were on how to charge Value Added Tax (VAT) and taxes on gambling amenities offered online. As stated by an article within the EU VAT Directive which foresees a certain exception within online gambling. What this means is that all forms of gambling were subject to the conditions and limitations set by each individual member of the European Union. There are exceptions to certain games which need not adhere to this law which includes pinball machines and a number of internet games that are subject to VAT, which is owned by the European Union providers in their member municipal institution.

Apart from Value Added Tax, wagering and gambling tax exists which applies to many members of the EU. An example given would be that for online wagering and gambling, there would be certain member states of the EU such as The Netherlands that have a law on taxation.

The Internal Revenue Service has a particular set of laws in place for recreational gamblers. These laws are in addition to the winnings coming from gambling having been deemed completely taxable and must be reported on the player’s tax return. It is also mentioned by the IRS that gambling income comprises of, and is not restricted to, winnings from national or online draws, horse racing, raffles, and online casinos. This is with the addition of cash winnings and the added market value of prizes such as trips and cars. It is the responsibility of the player to issue a particular form which is relative to certain gambling prizes and whether or not they are in possession of winnings which are subject to federal income tax withholding. It required by tax legislation that gambling winnings be listed as ‘other income’. Another added law is that players may be needed to pay an estimated tax on their gambling winnings.

The IRS states that players are allowed to subtract gambling losses if they document their deductions. This means that every loss must be recorded in complete detail in order for it to be accepted as a deduction. The only requirement of the law of deduction apart from detailed documentation of the losses is that losses may not exceed the amount of income generated from gambling which had initially been reported on the return.

It is very important to accurately document all your gambling winnings and losses. In order to successfully subtract your losses on your tax return, players must be within the means to provide tickets, receipts, statements, and any other records which are relevant to the amount of both your winnings and losses. Players who do not reside within the United States are required to enquire with their applicable revenue service on how to declare their winnings.


Online gambling has had a controversial reputation over many years, with bold claims made by players, claiming that it is a scam and a front for malicious financial crimes. Today there are various laws in place. And with the safety standards, and general tips we have discussed, myths have been dispelled and we may now safely assume that online gambling is just as safe as traditional brick-and-mortar casinos and much more convenient, as we can access them anytime and anywhere. Reputable online casinos and software companies are not out to rig the games you enjoy and most of them aim to provide you with a safe and exciting gambling environment. It is always important to remember that you, the player, are responsible for your own well-being and that where you choose to gamble is entirely your decision, however; do not ignore the red flags and if something seems off or is too good to be true, well, it usually is. There will always be negative elements in any industry, but with the information provided to you, you will be able to ensure your safety and satisfaction. Always remember to remain within the guidelines of your country and the terms and conditions of the casino. Read them thoroughly, and seek advice when you need it, and most importantly, gamble responsibly.

World of Online Gambling

History of online gambling

History of Online Gambling

Gambling Industry

Forms of Online Gambling

Land-based casinos vs. online casinos

Land-based casinos vs. online casinos


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