Calls For More Online Gaming Regulations

Many are calling for increases regulation of online gaming websites as the industry continues to be plagued by cheats. One online poker site has had to pay millions to players and sports betting has received negative publicity after some sports figures took bribes to fix games. To add to the problems faced by the online gaming industry rogue casino operators continue their operations with impunity. Land based gaming operators are regulated licensed and taxes but sinc3e many casino operators are offshore enforcement of regulations can be difficult if not impossible. The UK government maintains a ‘white list’ of approved licensing jurisdictions to protect UK players from rogue casinos. Land based casinos can easily be visited by enforcement officials and violators can be closed down or can be made to pay hefty fines.

A recent police investigation in the UK into suspect wagers on a National Rugby league match between the Canterbury Bulldogs and the North Queensland Cowboys and the ‘no ball’ scandal in the recent Pakistan/England cricket match have put sports betting in a negative light. Allegations of cheating have made some punters wary. Although cross border and online sports betting is illegal in many countries rogue operators continue to take bets with impunity.

Online poker has received its share of negative publicity. Earlier in the year one of the founders of StoxPoker was forced to quit after an investigation revealed that he used multiple accounts at several poker sites to cheat. He was also accused of colluding with other players to cheat during online games. The popular television news program 60 Minutes broadcast a special about online poker cheating exposing many techniques used by online cheats. In May top poker site AbsolutePoker was hit with a cheating scandal. Although the site itself did not participate in the cheating a player took advantage of vulnerabilities. Software to facilitate online poker cheating is openly marketed on the internet.

Online bingo is probably one of the only online gaming sectors not plagued by cheating scandals. The sophisticated software platforms used by most online bingo sites makes cheating almost impossible. In addition most online bingo games are for lower stakes and players are not motivated to cheat. Although cheating is generally not an issue at bingo sites there have been customer complaints about withdrawal policies and some people who play bingo online report that they feel they may have been cheated out of legitimate winnings. UK bingo players enjoy the protections of the ‘white list’ and rogue operators do not last very long in the UK internet bingo market. The best protection against cheating is for players to thoroughly check out any gaming site they may choose to play at. There are many excellent blogs and bingo reviews where the reputation of a site can be researched.

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