Sports Betting and Online Gambling
Online gambling has become a multi-billion dollar industry. It is estimated that millions of people gamble online on a daily basis. While many think of gambling as a fun activity, others view it as a health hazard. The legality of online gambling remains a point of contention. In spite of federal law, individual states are increasingly considering legislation that would make gambling legally available to residents.
One of the most interesting trends in online gambling has been the rise in legality for sports betting. Sports betting is a longstanding pastime, but it has only recently been made available to consumers on the internet. Some estimates say that nearly half of all states allow some form of sports wagering on the web. A few states, such as Hawaii and Nevada, have had the foresight to offer regulated sports wagering in their states. Other jurisdictions are still working out the details. However, in recent years the buzz surrounding the possibility of online sports betting has been stronger than other forms of gambling.
There are several factors that contribute to this increased interest. First, it is easier to gamble online. Many sites offer easy to use apps that allow players to place bets anywhere. Secondly, regulated sites offer fast payouts and secure transactions. Third, regulation may help generate taxation revenue. Finally, most operators offer self-exclusions to keep problematic gamblers off their platforms.
Unlike conventional brick and mortar gambling, Internet gambling is governed by different sets of rules. This includes laws that protect consumers and ensure that the sites are run by trustworthy bodies. For example, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement oversees online wagering in the Garden State.
In the United States, gambling has been banned in some parts of the country for decades. In 2011, the Department of Justice gave states the authority to pass legislation regulating the legality of online gambling. At the time, Nevada was the only state with an active online gambling site. But, on the other hand, there were plenty of illegal overseas-based websites that offered American poker players a hard time.
Earlier this year, the US Supreme Court overturned the federal ban on sports betting. In the ensuing year, several states have passed legislation allowing consumers to legally bet on games of skill. On the other hand, there is some controversy as to whether the benefits of regulation outweigh the risks. Nonetheless, the growing number of jurisdictions that are looking to regulate Internet gaming has been good news for both consumer protection and the taxing authorities.
Fortunately, the UIGEA has not made a dent in the growth of the industry. In fact, the number of regulated online sites has increased rapidly. Even so, there are still a lot of unregulated overseas sites that have onerous withdrawal penalties and other measures designed to keep consumers off their sites. Several Internet operators have taken steps to help detect risky gamblers, but there are few who have actually implemented a strategy.