Safe Online Casinos
Many people who don’t have much experience gambling online question whether or not it is safe to gamble at online casinos. Those of us that remember a time before Google and eBay still have a healthy fear of the Internet and its anonymity. Some people are still afraid of shopping or making any financial transaction online, afraid of having their identity stolen or being ripped off by a hacker.
Like any online business, there are safe and legitimate online casinos and there are casino sites that make money by ripping people off. The same is true for anything you can buy on the Internet: some sites use security encryption, others don’t. Some sites tell you about fees and other charges upfront, others don’t.
Online casinos have another factor working against them in the court of public opinion: depending on where you are in the world, some people will always be suspicious of gambling. These tend to be the same people who think slot machines are fixed or controlled by the casino to be hot or cold, the same people who recommend the Martingale system for fool-proof casino winnings. People already suspicious of gambling in general may look at gambling on the Internet and see red flags all over the place.
The truth is, there are plenty of safe online casinos. Many world governments regulate and run their own version of online casinos, while others are run by multinational companies with a long history in the gaming business. The biggest online casinos in Europe are those run by gambling firms that used to specialize in roadside betting shops, household names that are obviously safe by virtue of how long they’ve been accepting bets.
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What Are Safe Online Casinos?
A safe online casino is any casino site that does fair business with its customers, processes deposits and withdrawals in a timely manner, protects customer’s financial information, and has been tested and certified fair by a third-party auditor.
You can tell that an online casino is fair due to its certification of fairness by a third-party auditor such as Technical Systems Testing.
These auditors test the mathematics and software that a given online casino runs on and certifies it to be fair. The best and safest online casinos update this certification information multiple times a year, while a casino that isn’t so safe may never update their certification or even display it.
The best way to know if an online casino is processing payments fairly is to read casino reviews and other material written by members of that site. Word gets around fast in the online gaming world, so when an online casino takes too long to process withdrawals or outright refuses to let a customer withdraw funds, sites dedicated to online casino reviews and news let their readers know about it. If you read a lot of reviews of a given casino that indicate they aren’t processing withdrawals quickly enough, you can assume that’s not a safe online casino.
Dangers of Online Casino Gambling
It’s important to understand what can happen if you open an account with an unsafe online casino.
The most obvious danger of signing up at an online casino that isn’t safe is the loss of your funds. It’s possible for a sham online casino to accept deposits and never make the money available to the client, completely ripping them off with a simple credit card form. But not all online casino safety problems are that obvious.
Established safe online casinos have a history of good business dealings to lean on, but some (not all) new online casinos don’t have this pedigree to prove they are safe. It’s not always easy to tell if an online casino will be selling your details to a third party or advertiser; this isn’t exactly a safety issue, but many view it as an invasion of privacy. Just remember that you’ll be handing lots of sensitive information to an online casino when you join, and that giving your banking details to an unsafe online casino can lead to identity theft or loss of funds.
How to Find a Safe Online Casino
Recognizing a safe online casino requires a few different skills. The first is simply the ability to know when something doesn’t look or feel right. If you have lots of Internet experience, you can see the signs of a ripoff: not enough content on a site, confusing details about registration and licensing, and little or no history of doing business with real customers.
When you’re evaluating an online casino, look for licensing and legal information.
The safest online casinos proudly display and announce what sort of gambling license they hold, along with certificates from companies that test and verify the fairness of casino games and random number generators. If a casino site doesn’t make this information easy to find, or lists contradictory information about their licensing and certification, you should assume it isn’t a safe online casino.
If you don’t trust your instincts, there are a few things you can do to look into an online casino before you decide to do business with them. Online gambling is a huge industry, with millions of customers all over the world. Naturally, these customers started to post reviews of online casinos and participate in gambling forums and other websites to share their experiences in online gambling. Thanks to these reviews and note, you can avoid casinos that may not be safe simply by reading customer reviews about negative experiences. If you don’t think you can tell a rip-off from a legitimate online casino, your best bet is to study up on casino reviews online.
As of this writing, safe and legitimate online casinos still outnumber unsafe casinos. That’s thanks in part to the active online gambling community warning others about unsafe business practices. When you’re ready to try your hand at online gambling, it is important to do your homework and choose a safe online casino to gamble at. An hour’s worth of research into a casino’s practices now could save you hours of headache and hundreds of dollars in losses in the future.