the Right Online Casino
are about 3,000 online casinos as of the date of this
are many ways you can go about finding an online casino. Perhaps the easiest way is to go to one of the online search
engines, such as Yahoo.com, Excite.com, or my favorite,
Google.com and type in "online gambling" or
Almost any gambling related word such as
"gambling" or "blackjack" or "Las
Vegas" will turn up thousands of hits on any of the search
engines. Many of
the hits will be portals for online casinos, with most of them
purporting to list a few selected and "safe" casinos.
of these casino portals have done no research at all on the
safety or reliability of the casinos they have listed.
The casinos listed are there simply because the casino
portal listing them is an affiliate of the casinos. As
affiliates, they are paid a commission or referral fee for every
customer who is referred to the casino by the casino portal and
subsequently plays at the casino.
Some online casinos offer simple fees to their affiliates
for visitors who register to download the free software, and others
go much further, even offering their affiliates a percentage of
the losses from persons who are referred and gamble in the
of how the casino's affiliate is paid, you cannot rely on these
casino portals to have taken any measures to protect your
fact, in many cases, the referring sites are rooting for you to
lose so that they can be paid higher commissions.
The conflict of interest here is self evident, yet hardly
any of these sites mention their relationships with the casinos
they are recommending.
can literally spend hundreds of hours building a list of
prospective casinos if you go about it by searching through all
the sites which come up through the search engines and the
casino portal sites. And,
you still will not have answered some of the basic questions,
such as "Is this casino safe?" and "Does it offer
a nice sign up bonus" and "Is it a good place for me
have done most of the work for you to help you find the best
online casinos. Appendix
1 lists almost 700 online casinos, giving their names, URLs and
a description of the Sign Up Bonuses, if any.
This list should be your starting place to find a
may wonder why I just don't give you a list of ten or twenty
casinos where I have played and save you a lot of time and
effort. There are
several reasons I have decided not to do this.
if I listed only my favorite casinos, and a thousand readers of
this book decided to use the techniques I am describing to beat
the casinos, you can be sure that the bonus offers would
disappear very quickly. My
list would be quickly outdated as the casinos would change their
offers to counter the large number of winning players suddenly
descending on their site.
reason I hesitate to give you a small list of "proven"
casinos is because of the fluidity of the Internet.
Online casinos change much more quickly than the brick
and mortar variety of casino.
Because of this rapid change, there is just no way that
any short list I give you is still going to be up to date in a
year or two.
is why I suggest you start with the large list of online casinos
in Appendix 1. This
online casino list is comprehensive enough that it will be a
good starting point for some time.
you will look at the List of Internet Casinos, you will notice
that I have indicated the ones with Sign Up Bonuses as of the
date of this publication. Like
all things on the Internet, these bonuses will change. You need to specifically verify that a bonus is still offered
before you begin playing. Fortunately,
this is one of the easiest things to ascertain with an e-casino.
Many casinos use pop-up boxes advertising the bonuses as
soon as the site appears in your browser.
These casinos want you to see the bonus as a major
attraction of the casino so that you start playing immediately.
While you want to pick a casino with a bonus, as that is
an essential part of advantage play, the bonus should be for a
reasonable amount. Ten
percent bonuses are common and 20 percent bonuses are not rare.
However, any casino offering a bonus greater than 20 or
25 percent should be scrutinized very carefully.
If the casino's offer seems too good to be true, it
probably is. I
would especially be leery of very large bonuses, such as 50 or
finding a casino offering a bonus, it is a good idea to see if
the casino is licensed.
While licensing is no guarantee as to the casino's
trustworthiness, I would much rather play in a licensed casino
than an unlicensed one. Licensed
casinos have to meet a number of criteria for licensing.
Perhaps as important as any other requirement is that
licensees have to come up with cash to pay for the license.
Licenses range in cost from $25,000, for one in Dominica,
to $350,000 for an Australian license.
Crooks usually try to set up a scam as inexpensively as
possible and usually don't bother to get licensed.
can also check to see if the casino is a member of the
Interactive Gambling Council (http://www.igcouncil.org).
The IGC is the principal Internet gambling industry
group. It is
engaged in lobbying and promoting a responsible, regulated
online gaming industry. There
are a number of provisions of IGC membership designed to protect
of the terms IGC members are required to comply with are:
IGC members will abide by the laws and regulations of the
jurisdictions in which they conduct business.
• IGC members will voluntarily make their systems, algorithms
and practices available for inspection and review by any
legitimate gaming commission or governmental authority or by any
independent testing authority recognized by the IGC.
IGC members will design and operate their services to afford
customers privacy and confidentially and will post their
confidentiality practices and procedures.
IGC members shall be truthful in all promotions.
Gaming and wagering operator rules as well as payout
percentages will be made available to the public.
In order to provide for the prompt and efficient resolution of
disputes, IGC members will retain detailed transaction records
which will be archived, accessible and auditable by any
legitimate gaming commission of governmental authority.
IGC members will conduct their banking and financial affairs in
accordance with generally accepted standards of internationally
recognized banking institutions.
IGC members will ensure that there is adequate financing
available to pay all current obligations and that working
capital is adequate to finance ongoing operations.
IGC members will
pay winnings and account balances promptly on demand (italics
addition, it costs $5,000 to become a full member of IGC,
placing another hurdle for those less-than-scrupulous operators.
which are subjected to audits by well known public accounting
firms are more reputable than ones which are not.
Look for information about the casino's auditors on the
e-casino's web site.
the appearance of the site.
If the site looks cheap or amateurish, or if you have a
bad feeling about the site, don't play there.
With so many online casinos to choose from, you can
afford to be picky.
you are so inclined, you can check to see if the casino has had
very many complaints. A
good place to start is deja.com (http://www.deja.com).
Go to the site and type in the name of the casino you are
reviewing. If you
want to see an example of a casino which developed some
notoriety for not paying its players, and now appears to be out
of business, go to deja.com and type in "firstlive" or
site (http://firstlive.com) is no longer operative; however, a
number of the complaints are still posted.
Appendix 4 lists sites you will want to avoid.
Appendix 2 lists a number of Internet gambling resources
used to research a site.
Better-Betting site (http://www.better-betting.com) features a
"have your say" column where players can express their
opinions about online gaming.
Casino Web Cast's web site (http://www.casinowebcast.com)
also has a message board. Gambling
Magazine (http://www.gamblingmagazine.com) has articles on
gambling and a "Not Recommended" list.
However, this list is too broad to be useful, as all of
the Starnet casinos recently showed up on their bad casino list.
Starnet is one of the premier operators in the business
and only Gambling Magazine seems to have a problem with them.
are many other sites with forums or discussion groups.
The Daily Spread (http://www.thedailyspread.com) has a
forum as does the Internet Gaming Commission site (http://www.internetcommission.com). This site has a very thorough dispute resolution process and
has an online form where you can submit disputes.
It also offers an accreditation process for members and
has an online search engine for casinos.
you want to find out more about the people behind the casino, go
to the WHOIS registry at http://internic.net/whois.html.
This is a registry of all registered domain names used on
the Internet. Enter
the exact URL of the casino (the domain name) and you will find
out the information about the persons behind the casino, such as
their home addresses, the web site administrator's name, and
is a growing number of publicly held casinos.
I listed a number of the publicly held casinos in the
it Safe to Gamble on the Net?"
For the latest up to date information on publicly held
casinos, check the web site found at http://www.streetdice.com.
you like to do original research, then I have given you several
ways to go about it. However,
you may not have the patience to do all of these things.
A very easy way to judge e-casinos is to see if they use
a major brand of software.
Appendix 3 lists the web sites of many of the major
software developers. It
takes a large investment to develop the software for an online
casino. The large
software developers have substantial investments, and they are
going to do everything they can to promote a well regarded
online gaming experience. In
addition, software companies often do substantial investigations
on potential licensees and continue to monitor their activities.
you have a bad experience with an e-casino, it will most likely
be with one using a half-baked Java program and unknown
experts recommend that the easiest way to avoid problems is to
simply avoid any e-casino using Java software and only play at
casinos with large downloadable programs, as these casinos
generally have much larger investments in their infrastructures
and are more likely to be reliable.
The major software companies relying on large programs
which you must download and install are Boss Media, Cryptologic,
iCrystal, and Starnet. Starnet
alone has hundreds of licensees as shown in Appendix 5.
believe that limiting yourself to only playing on the online
casinos using a large, downloadable program, may be too
restrictive. I have
had good experiences with the licensees of the following Java
based software developers, all of which use Java based software:
Chartwell, Gambling Systems, Online Gaming Systems and
Unified Gaming. In
addition, several of these companies are publicly traded, which
adds to their credibility.
is one major software brand which has been implicated in massive
fraud, using software programmed to cheat the consumer and even
cheat their own affiliates.
These companies are Funscape.com, CasinoSoft.com the game
developer, Handa-Lopez Inc. (HLI) acting as the e-cash company,
World Wide Multimedia and Scylinx Corporation.
is hard evidence that the masterminds behind these frauds, David
Brown and Raymond Clark, cheated their own casino operators as
well as thousands of merchants who are advertising their banners
on a commission basis.
is also evidence, based on statements made by Handa Lopez, Inc.,
that their software is also rigged to cheat the end consumers.
Handa Lopez is David Brown's ex-wife.
a short time ago, CasinoSoft, in a desperate effort to sell its
expensive rigged software, set up web sites using graphics and
animations stolen from casino operators and a game developer,
who are their competitors.
The Internet service provider hosting the sites for David
Brown removed the pages to avoid legal proceedings.
recommend that you avoid any of the e-casinos affiliated with
this group. Here is
a list of casinos using this software:
have given you considerable food for thought.
But it makes no sense to play in any casino unless you
are comfortable with the casino.
After culling out the casinos which do not meet our tests
for "reputability" and picking a casino which offers a
reasonable bonus, the next step is to download the software and
play some games for fun.
you are trying out the software, you may want to call the casino
with any questions you have. If the casino does not have a phone number, don't play there.
If the phone rings and rings and no one answers it, do
you think you will be able to reach anyone if you have a problem
involving money. After
you have completed checking out the casino using background
research, your final test resembles a full dress rehearsal.
Several times I have had problems with software I have
downloaded. If the
e-casino is not responsive in solving this problem, then don't
is a list of items to check before deciding to deposit cash with
an online casino:
Find a casino with a sign up bonus.
There is no point in playing in any e-casino which does
not give you at least a 10 percent bonus.
Check to see if the casino is licensed.
Appendix 5 lists unlicensed e-casinos.
See if the e-casino is listed as a licensee of a major
software brand. Appendix
3 lists the major software brands and their URLs.
Review some of the resources I have shown you to see if
any obvious problems, such as numerous consumer complaints, are
2 shows a number of Internet resources you can use to get the
Check the lists of sites to avoid.
But don't forget to check some of the other references I
have given you as situations change very quickly on the
Visit the e-casino's web site.
Verify the current amount of the bonus offered.
If the bonus is given as a percent, is there a limit on
the dollar amount? What
games are offered? We
will only be interested in playing certain games and the casino
must offer them to remain in contention.
Are there transaction fees?
How much are they.
Find out if the e-casino is audited?
If the auditor is a large, well known firm, so much the
Visit the e-casino's "about us" page giving
information about the operators.
If it doesn't have one, you may want to check the WHOIS
database to get more information on the principals.
Find out who processes the credit card transactions. Not all sites show this information, but it is very helpful
when you have played in dozens of casinos and are trying to
reconcile your records.
Download the software and play some of the games without
depositing any money. If
you are still not quite certain about the e-casino or if you
have any problems or questions with the software, try e-mailing
or phoning the e-casino. If
you can't reach someone now, don't even think about depositing a
nickel with them.
you want to shortcut many of these rules, only play at a casino
using well known software.
Only play with downloadable software and make sure the
casino offers at least a 10 percent bonus, can be contacted by
phone and is licensed. And
don't forget to download the software and practice using it
before making a deposit.
The above was taken from the Online Gambling Toolkit.
Access to the Online Gambling Toolkit!
5901-J Wyoming NE Suite 305
Albuquerque NM 87109
© 1998 - 2013 Gamblers Bookcase · All Rights Reserved