Online Gambling and Identity Theft
The first rule of online gambling? Never talk about online gambling. The second rule? Always be aware that other people are out to take your money, either legally or illegally. The legal aspect you probably expect, but the illegal may be a surprise to you. It’s that element that you need to be wary of. Scam casinos, cheating players and poorly-designed software are all working against you when you step out into the online gambling world.
Getting a Safe Start to Online Gambling
You may be asking yourself: Is it worth it? If you’re looking for a good time and excited by the prospect of gambling in your own home, then of course it is. And if you follow this guide, you’ll be more than ready to take on this world, despite its dangers. Remember: There is plenty of worry-free fun to be had IF you take the proper steps to ensure that you play safe before you get started.
The key to playing safe is to find a great and legitimate online casino. Other casinos may have bigger bonuses, flashier sites or more favorable lines than the site you actually choose to play with, but those sites may not have the kind of track record that you need to ensure safe play. This site is full of articles about both spotting scam sites and how to go about evaluating a legitimate site
Tips to new players
Once you’ve decided on a casino, you have gotten over the hard part, but there are still dangers lurking. Once you sign up and make your deposit, you have essentially turned over some hard-earned cash and your personally identifiable information to someone on the faith of your research.
In addition to the more general articles above, we have some tips specific to new players:
- Don’t play games that you’re unfamiliar with for money. No matter how easy it is, you can’t be sure that other players aren’t out to take advantage of your naiveté and play unfairly. Plus, you will never be able to spot a (perhaps intentional) glitch in the site’s software that puts you at a disadvantage if you don’t know how the game is going to work. If the game looks exciting to you, then go through the trouble to learn its ins and outs.
- Don’t play with gamblers that are out of your league. Heighten your odds of not being taken advantage of by not playing games of chance against people who seem to be hanging around the site a lot, looking for people to scam. Remember: The casinos aren’t the only ones who can pull a scam in the online world. Players have their tricks, too.
- Know you have to wait at a good casino. You may be in a rush to get down to the business of gambling, but good casinos will want to verify you are who you say you are before you lay your first bet. Because of the prevalence of identity thieves and con artists online, be grateful for this and consider yourself lucky to be at a casino where they value honesty.
Play Smart, Play Safely, and Have a Good Time! Handing over personal information, whether it’s some sort of government identification number (which you should NEVER have to give to an online casino) or your home address (which you will have to give up), is always a risky proposition online. More and more people are falling victim to identity theft, which is one of the fastest-growing crimes in the world. Online activity, and the naiveté that most people approach it with, make it even easier for these con artists to take your money, ruin your credit, and basically do serious damage to the rest of your life. The only way to combat online identity theft is to deal exclusively with sites that you trust!
Submit Personal Information on Secure Sites
Some sites are so hastily prepared in an effort to scam you that their sites are open for other people to hack into. If you are ever asked to enter personal information (including financial information) into a webpage that is not secure, then don’t. This is easy to verify, since the url will begin with https:// if it is secure and http:// for other pages (SSL). Most pages on the site won’t be secure and don’t have to be, but pages that ask you to enter information have to be. If these encryption safeguards aren’t in place, your information is going to be much more easily hacked by identity thieves.
Even if it isn’t intercepted when you transmit the data, any site that doesn’t provide a safe way to enter information probably is similarly lax when it comes to providing safety once your data is stored. You’ve probably heard stories (and may even have some experience with) about banks and credit card companies that have had their customers’ information compromised by identity thieves. If it can happen to banks, you better believe it can happen at online casinos. Six months down the road, someone might find a way into the database that holds your information and use it for the purposes of stealing your identity.
Do Not Give Your Information to Identity Thieves Willingly
Obviously, you would never knowingly give over personal information to identity thieves, but when you hand it over to someone you don’t know and have no reason to trust, you are doing it willingly. You wouldn’t hand out photocopies of your Social Security card to people you don’t know, so why would you give information that is just as dangerous to a company that you know nothing about? Don’t let your eagerness to gamble get in the way of your own personal safety. Always check to make sure that the site is reputable before handing over any information.
Remember: Giving identity thieves social security numbers and such are obviously dangerous, but they can work magic with information as basic as your name and address. Don’t fill out any online forms under the false impression that the information you give up can’t expose you to danger.
Who Are We and Why Are We Here ?
We are a group of former online gambling executives that built honest, legitimate sites. Unfortunately, the Internet is a wonderful place to take advantage of potential players, and we got sick and tired of hearing about all the scam gambling operations. So we decided to do something about it.
Today, we are an organization that monitors online gambling operations. We do our own research, gather reviews and scam reports from customers, and keep our ears to the ground. Most importantly, we feed it back to current and potential players to help them avoid the bad sites.
This is a community effort. The more that people like you help us to identfy the good and bad sites, and the new types of scams, the better job we can do helping people avoid them. If you know of a scam operations, please report a scam here. If you know of an honest place to play online, you can help by reviewing it for others to read.