Online gambling regulation has changed exponentially over the last decade. Operators now work with better systems than they did a few years ago. Although some regions have yet to create solid gambling legislation, licensed online casinos run under various standards that ensure quality services. Nevertheless, the internet is not short of rogue gambling sites whose sole purpose is to cheat players out of their money. Online gaming has become so popular that it provides ripe opportunities for dishonest operators to scam gamblers. As much as regulators and other agencies try to make the sector safe for everyone, a number of gaming websites still slip through the cracks.
The market offers thousands of online casinos, all of them promising the best products and services. Untrustworthy operators do everything to attract players. Therefore, sometimes it’s hard to spot a rogue gambling platform until you begin using it. Have you ever asked yourself why some of these shady operators remain in business? It’s because they take their time to scam customers, and some players might not even be aware they are getting defrauded. Some rogue behaviours are attributed to bad service until the next gambler comes along, and the same thing happens. So, how can you tell when an online casino doesn’t have your best interests in mind?
Too Many Complaints
When you narrow down the most suitable online casinos, one of the first things to do is to check the operator’s reputation. You can do that by looking up customer testimonials and reviews. A gambling site could have a licence, generous bonuses and superior quality games but still falls short on other fronts. Therefore, you have to learn what other gamblers think about it. Players have dozens of websites where they can source details about a specific platform. If you want to check out the option of Spinaway Casino for Canadian players, you will find more than information about it. Look at more than one review when comparing casinos. Most importantly, though, find the complaints.
A huge plus side of gambling online is that players have many places to express their opinions. From social media to community forums, you don’t have to struggle to get information. Firstly, consider the number of complaints a casino receives. Five complaints are average, but more than ten are too many, especially if they are within a short span. Secondly, look at the common issues. If several customers keep complaining about the same thing, it means the casino doesn’t take the time to deal with it, which should be a red flag. Remember to check out casino blacklists, as well, to see which operators are already known for their shady conduct.
Poor Licence Quality
It’s one thing for a gambling website to be registered, but it’s something else for the licence to be from a reputable regulator. In this day and age, any informed player knows not to use an unlicensed online casino. Regulation means there is a third party you can complain to about an operator that is not providing services as necessary. What some gamblers don’t know, however, is that regulators are not all the same. Different jurisdictions have varying requirements for registering gambling websites. Some online gaming authorities have strict standards, while others are surprisingly lax. The more stringent a regulator is, the better it ranks in reputation. It’s why the UK Gambling Commission is the premier licensing body in the world.
One thing to watch out for in a questionable casino is where it is licensed. Rogue operators have licences from second-rate regulators that are not serious about how licensees operate. Costa Rica and Kahnawake are some of the jurisdictions you should be careful about. Of course, simply because a casino holds a licence from these regulators doesn’t make it shady. Nonetheless, you should stay alert and watch out for other red flags.
Changing or Unclear Terms and Conditions
Rogue online casinos are extremely tricky and try to make players feel like nothing wrong is happening. One way they do that is by using the T&Cs to confuse customers. Everyone knows not many people read all the terms and conditions on a website, even though they should. Dubious operators capitalise on this bad habit. They include the vital information in lengthy clauses, or sometimes leave it out entirely. Another tactic is applying ambiguous language that makes some parts difficult to understand.
So, you gamble on the platform, thinking everything is going well, then find out you can’t cash out winnings because you didn’t meet all the conditions. Some operators even go as far as altering the T&Cs to suit a narrative. Many operators get away with this trick because customers can’t argue against the decision if they don’t know what the terms were in the first place. For this reason, never play on an online casino without reading and understanding the T&Cs.
Unavailable or Poor Support
If you can’t contact a casino, then you can raise your issues. Shady operators always try to hide from customers. When it gets to a point where you are attempting to reach the support team, then it’s too late and your money is gone. Thus, be careful not to end up in such a situation. You can still tell how a casino handles customer support from reviews and testimonials. Go to complaint sites and see how the operator responds to customers. You can also try to contact the support team before you start playing. See if the contact options provided work and how long it takes for customer service to respond.
The online gambling industry is growing at a dizzying pace, with a CAGR of 11.49% expected between 2021 and 2026. Hence, it’s not surprising bad actors want to take advantage. More than a few rogue operators target uninformed and inexperienced gamblers, defrauding them out of their money. Shady online casinos use various methods to cheat players. So, gamblers should have an idea of the suspicious practices to keep an eye on to spot shady operators.