Online Casinos and Safety: Am I Being Cheated?
One of the biggest concerns players have about online casinos is if they are being cheated out of their money. With brick & mortar casinos they at least have some reassurance that the casino is regulated and monitored by the local law enforcement. In the vast world of the internet, who is to say that an online casino is really fair and is not just trying to rob the unsuspecting players blind?
Big and trustworthy casinos are, in fact, subject to a serious scrutiny. Their software, including all of their games, like slots, table games, etc., must be powered by an independently audited and certified Random Number Generator (RNG). The RNG is the guarantee that the games are fair and do not give the casinos a bigger advantage than they inherently have. (Online casinos, like their land-based counterparts, have an inherent edge against the player, which makes them a profitable business model; this is not a secret.)
One of the biggest companies in the world dealing with auditing the casino software is London based eCOGRA: eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance. This world-recognized organization doesn't only deal with fairness of the gaming itself, but also watches out for other aspects, like protection of vulnerable players, customer payments, underage gambling problems, and more. If an online casino has an eCOGRA seal of approval, you can rest assured that things are on the up and up there.
On top of that, all online casinos need to get an operating license depending on where their base of operation is and in which countries they wish to offer their services. Some of the best known licenses are provided by the UK Gambling Commission, Gibraltar Betting and Gambling Association, and Malta Gaming Authority.
Most of casinos advertised on our sites are approved by eCOGRA, including Jackpot City, Spin Palace, Betway, 888 Casino and quite a few others.
Be Mindful of Rogue Casinos
Of course, it goes without saying that not all online casinos are fair and have their customers' interest at heart. Much like in any other business, especially online, there are those who are in it just to try and make a quick buck at all costs. These are the kind of places you need to be able to recognize and stay as far away as possible.
There have been many casinos over the years that went out of business, stealing, in the process, hundreds of thousands from their former customers. This is a big and very important topic, so we've decided to give it the attention it deserves.
You don't need to be a psychologist or even be directly affected by the gambling addiction to realize it is a very real and very serious problem. Gambling is fun and exciting until things get out of hands; at that point, it become the road that can lead to some very dark places.
While it is always easy to blame it all on the addicts themselves, the gambling addiction is much more complicated than that. There is no denying that players are largely responsible for allowing themselves to lose control over things, but they are not the only ones at fault.
The whole idea of gambling and winning life changing money overnight is a very appealing one. It is what helped the industry grow so much but it is also the core of many addicted related problems. For some people, once the chase for winnings begins, they are not able to stop until they really win huge (which happens rarely) or get in serious financial and other troubles.
Responsible online casinos are aware of that and as much as they like the profit, they also understand they have a certain moral obligation to their customers and their family and friends. This is why they set up the mechanisms that help gamblers stay in control, from setting restrictions on deposit limits to requesting to be banned from the casino and asking for the assistance from organizations like Gamblers Anonymous.
Unfortunately, even the most responsible casino can only do so much. It is ultimately down to the player to realize they have a problem and figure out how severe it is. If it is just a matter of depositing too much money at the moment of tilt and regretting the decisions minutes later, then you can easily set daily, weekly, and monthly deposit limits which will prevent you from digging a hole too deep.
If the problem runs deeper and you will chase your losses no matter what, even if it means depositing with another casino or driving to your local gambling joint, then the problem is more serious and it may be time to request some help. Gambling addiction can creep up quite innocuously and the biggest danger is that people don't give it enough attention until things become very serious.
Remember, gambling, online and offline, is primarily a fun activity. The moment it becomes something else, it is time to step back and think about things thoroughly and even seek advice.
Another serious problems that online casinos have to deal with is underage gambling. Live casinos have simple methods to put a stop to this, as they can request IDs on the site and can prevent most underage people from entering their premises and / or playing in the casino.
For online casinos, however, it is a bit more complicated. With hundreds or sometimes even thousands of new customers registering every day, it can be hard to keep track of all of them.
Reputable casinos still try to do their due diligence and that's why you will nearly always have to go through a verification procedure at some point (usually when requesting a withdrawal).
These verification procedures can be a bit time-consuming and can involve a bit of back and forth with the casino staff but are absolutely necessary to prevent underage people from gambling online. If they weren't in place, there would be no way to tell who should and who shouldn't be playing.