Ever since the iPhone was launched, mobile phones have been used for much more than just sending text messages and making phone calls.
Smartphones for many, have become indispensable devices that can be used for video calling, streaming movies from, searching the internet, and playing games. Indeed more than 4 billion people are using smartphones and other devices to surf the internet. This means there is a huge market for all sorts of industries to exploit.
One industry that is growing rapidly online is casinos and gambling. This area takes in table games such as poker, blackjack, and roulette, plus slot machines and even bingo.
The question is whether it is safe to use these online casinos and to deposit your cash into them.
The popularity of online casinos
It is hard to deny the popularity of online gambling and its rise is due to a few factors. The biggest one may be the current pandemic that caused traditional gambling establishments to close temporarily, and some permanently.
But, there are other reasons too. One is simply that it is so convenient to log in to a casino and play a few hands of poker or spin the reels on a slot machine. Online casinos never close, there are no distractions, there is no dress code, and you don’t need to travel anywhere.
By using modern technology, online casino can attract younger players who wouldn’t enter a betting shop or traditional casino normally. Online poker is one particular area that has surged recently and it may be partly due to the anonymity that the internet brings.
It is exactly that anonymity that might be a problem though.
Online Casino FAQ
Before this article digs deeper, the immediate answer to that question is yes. For the most part, online casinos and downloadable games are safe. However, there are still some areas you need to be aware of. Here are some of the things you should be wary of when you start to use any form of online gambling.
How to find a reputable gaming site?
Luckily, the majority of online casino sites are perfectly safe. The best ways to put your mind at rest are to check the following: Online reviews Brand names Is it licensed? Is it available on Google Play or Apple App Store?
When searching for a good slot or poker game for your phone or an online casino then first check Google reviews. Are there any warning signs such as reviewers saying they have not been paid out?
Why to play with only a popular and a known casino site?
Brand names generally instill a feeling of trust so you could perhaps look for a big name that you have heard of. Don’t dismiss smaller companies though as they may offer bigger incentives to join.
Check whether they are with licensed or not?
All online casinos need to be licensed in their jurisdiction and that should be displayed clearly on their website. If you find an online casino Deutschland then they need to have a German license.
There is one gray area that you want to be wary of and that is bitcoin casinos. Because cryptocurrency is not recognized as a real currency online casinos that ONLY accept bitcoin may not be subject to licensing and this can leave you open to fraud.
Is it available on official download sites?
If a poker, blackjack, or slots game is on the Apple or Google stores then there is a high chance that it is legitimate, at the least you will know it doesn’t carry any nasty viruses. Be wary of downloading any APK files from non-official sites.
What other risks might you face?
The main risk of entering sensitive information such as your credit card details on the net is that they might get stolen. This is true for retail websites, streaming services, or online casinos.
The risks of using online casinos or downloadable content are:
- Data breaches
- Man in the middle attacks
- Rogue casinos – unlicensed fly-by-night operations
- False ‘free cash’ promises
Make sure the payment methods are secure or not?
When you compare online casinos to traditional ones you will see one area that differs in the payment methods. While land-based casinos generally only accept cash, online casinos will offer a multitude of methods to deposit and withdraw money.
When you choose your online casino check which payment methods they use so it is suitable for you and look for any mention of security. Most online casinos and mobile games will be keen to make clear how secure their payment system is. They will often let players use systems such as Stripe and PayPal to add extra layers of protection.
How can you safeguard yourself?
Regardless of what sites you are accessing, it is always important to safeguard your data. When you access an online casino check the URL in your browser to make sure it has HTTPS instead of HTTP. This means the website has a secure connection.
Accidently downloading malware can cause you a host of problems. One of the worst types is ransomware and you should have good antivirus and malware protection installed.
Data breaches are something that any website might face and there is little you can personally do except to change your passwords regularly and use different ones for each account you have.
Man in the middle attacks
This is where someone tries to intercept the data that you and the server you are connected to send each other. One way to keep secure while using an online casino is to use a VPN to mask your location and encrypt your data.
Many online casinos and sportsbooks offer incentives to sign up and some of these bonuses are great. Risk-free money to gamble with, what is wrong with that? Check the small print on websites to see how easy it is to get paid out from your free bets as normally there will be a deposit required too.
The overall consensus is that it is safe to download poker games to your mobile device or use online casinos as long as you follow a few basic security procedures. Check the license, use a VPN, download from reputable sites and you will be safer.
The only other danger is yourself, so only gamble with what you don’t mind losing. If you find all your funds are heading towards gambling then reach out for some help to an organization such as Gamblers Anonymous.