Is Online Gambling Legal?

Is Online Gambling Legal?

is online gambling legal

Online gambling has quickly become an increasingly popular way for people to access casino and sports wagering games for real money from the comfort of their homes, prompting lawmakers to grapple with whether it is legal. Answering this question with “yes” would be misleading; state-level government organizations oversee and license online gaming sites that adhere to state regulations for player protection against predatory practices and ensure integrity within gaming products. Regulated gambling sites collect taxes to help reduce the adverse impacts of gambling and support community initiatives, in addition to safeguarding consumer protection by making their services safer than their unregulated counterparts.

The Supreme Court’s ruling to strike down federal sports betting prohibitions has opened the door for many states to create their own gambling-regulating legislation governing sports betting and other forms of regulated gambling. While states may pass their own legislation governing such forms of regulated gambling, many major federal statutes still restrict certain forms of online gambling activity including the Wire Act and Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA).

Regulated gambling sites are run by companies licensed and regulated by state-level government organizations; however, unlicensed sites exist which allow operators to break the law. One operator who ran an unlicensed Bitcoin poker site was arrested in 2015 after breaking anti-money laundering laws; his case made headlines because this was the first time PASPA had ever been invoked against an Internet gambling operator.

State legislators are gradually realizing the advantages of regulating online gambling are far outweighing its drawbacks. Regulated casinos are easier to regulate, making them less likely to engage in predatory practices; more secure due to rigorous data encryption standards protecting financial information; and are capable of offering better customer rewards and bonuses.

Citizens can help to promote online gambling regulation by sharing articles that support regulated markets and writing to their representatives. Unfortunately, misunderstandings regarding gambling’s morality remain widespread; opponents can often be overly vocal in their opposition; thus making it important for the public to make its voice heard.

Multiple states are taking steps toward passing legislation that would authorize regulated online casinos. Maryland, for instance, is considering permitting its residents to gamble at online casinos, although the process will likely be lengthy. State Senator Ron Watson has drafted online casino legislation; in order to do so he will need to file two bills: one calling for a referendum vote and the other detailing how things will operate once voters approve an amendment to legislation.

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