Betting Safely Online

The online world is full of dangers, and no sector of it is more willing to take you for all you’re worth than the internet betting community (and not just by gambling). The lack of regulation makes it extremely difficult to determine which sites are likely to cheat you out of your money, so it’s up to you to take precautions to ensure your online gambling adventures don’t end in tragedy. And it’s completely possible if you follow these simple rules and end up at a great online casino or sportsbook.

Check websites thoroughly

Do your research! Thorough research could make the rest of this list moot, as it can put you at a betting site that you can trust. Reputable sites will go out of their way to accommodate you. Finding them among the muck is the tricky part. Luckily for you, however, there is a cottage industry of sites that are specifically geared towards making your online betting easy and fun by guiding you to the legitimate operations. Visit review sites that look professional and have both editorial and user reviews. When you’re done, Google the sites you’re interested in to see if there are any results from disgruntled members.

betting safe

Only bet at sites that are recognized by the IB… Volunteering to join this organization is one of the few ways online casinos can prove they are legit. Members have to submit their software to a third party to get it tested and verify the random nature of the games, so you know you aren’t being set up to lose when it counts. In addition to this, member sites who have gone out of their way to prove their legitimacy by joining will not want to screw over their users and have their membership revoked.

Bookmark URL

Bookmark the correct URL. There are many sites set up to confuse you into thinking you are on a reputable site when you actually aren’t. Make sure you are always going to the correct site by bookmarking the URL and using it each time you visit the site.

Read and understand the Terms of Use & Privacy Policy. Those checkboxes website require you to click before you can sign off that you usually ignore? They are there for a reason. The site wants to give off the illusion that they want you to understand the policies that they employ with things like your deposits, withdrawals, and privacy. They really want to just take away your right to complain when those policies are carried out, which is why you must know about them before you ever sign up. If you don’t like something, or don’t understand any of it, call customer service and clarify the problem before signing up, or just move on.

Stay up to date on policy changes. That important information you read before you signed up? (I know you did because I just told you to.) Sometimes it changes. Make sure your site keeps you aware of those changes via an e-mail notification or some other means, and then learn about these changes. If at any point, you find yourself saying, “This isn’t what I signed up for,” cancel your account.

Hide your data

Never give out financial information to play for free. Some sites will require you to enter in a small amount of information to play their free games (e.g. name, e-mail address – stuff they will use to market their paid services to you). If at any time you are required to enter in some financial information, run the other way. There is no reason they would need that unless they planned on charging something to your account.

Monitor your account

Monitor your account, even when you aren’t playing. If you have an open account with an online casino, it is important that you are aware of what is happening to your money. If you go weeks without playing, check in on your money anyway to make sure nothing bizarre, like its disappearance, is happening to it.

Be aware of the potential outcome of each game you play or bet you place. When you place a bet, you should know exactly how much money you could lose or win. Do not rely on the casino to make an honest pay-out or take the correct amount of cash should you lose. By verifying that every transaction is handled appropriately, you can always be sure you are dealing with an honest casino.

Don’t fall for gimmicks. Once you start gambling, you are going to get a lot of offers (usually bonus offers) to sign up for a different casino, or to deposit more money into your current casino. If any of these offers is outrageous, or comes from a casino that you can’t find any research on, don’t take them up on it. If you do decide that the offer is legit, always read the fine print to make sure you qualify for it.