Online Casinos – How to play secure
Beginning of the slot machine, as we know it today, goes back to the Liberty Bell machine invented by a Charles Fey in San Francisco. In fact some of the new video slot games feature the bell symbol even today.
Moving with the times and keeping up with the internet boom, gambling too has been welcomed into the cyber world. Today, there is an upsurge of mobile online casinos with players opting to play on their handheld devices – enjoying their favourite games while on the go. Service providers are now focussing on mobile gambling destinations, leaving not only the desktops, but also the laptops behind
Available games in internet casinos
Online slot games are popular as this is one arena where you can win a multi-millionaire jackpot at any time of the day from the comforts of your home or any where you may be.
This is a thinking man’s game where the player is ready to take risks to reach the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
Beside the listed games most of the big online casinos provide a huge selection of other games such as:
- Online Scratch Cards: Almost each one of us has played on a scratch card at some point in our lives – maybe at the petrol pump or at the end of the day on your way back home from work. The Online Scratch Card games follow the same principle without the physical feel of scratching the card.
- Video Poker: This is probably the oldest electronic game – as simple as they come without the glitz and razzmatazz of today’s games. You are given 5 cards to begin with – you may choose to discard or keep as many cards as you wish in round one itself. If you are lucky and know your cheat sheets well, you can actually beat the house and make a fortune. Strategy is the name of the game with video poker.
- Sportsbetting: This is one the most accepted forms of gambling and probably the oldest as well. Sportsbetting is bigger than the casino, more famous than any slot game and an unquestionably wide global reach.
- Baccarat: The game preferred by the legendary James Bond. You have to be really clever to play this game and hence most of the gamblers who are scared of numbers avoid it. The game itself is not as complicated as it looks – just takes some understanding and once that is done, Baccarat makes the player feel and look as cool as Mr Bond himself.
- Bingo: The appeal of this game lies in the people playing it. Bingo is a game that is bound to cheer you up if you are ever feeling low. A game played by happy people of all ages which does not involve high bets or people losing their temper at any point. Bingo is known to be the cheerleader of casinos online.
- Lottery: Lotto is the single most popular gambling game worldwide – the reason being it is in most part regulated by the state itself and not any private company. Lotto does not have the winning odds as in roulette or blackjack, but some of the biggest jackpots are undoubtedly found on the Lotto sites.
How to choose the best casino
It is very easy to lose one’s way in the quest to find the most suitable online casino for your needs amongst the innumerable online casinos accessible today. The top 10 online casinos of 2017 listed above have been ranked on factors ranging from reliability, customer support, online casino security, games and software, languages and currencies, timely payouts, casino bonuses, promotions, etc.
The above are some of the best casinos online at the time of writing this article. However, please note that the operators are constantly trying to better their games and give their players the best gaming experience possible. The reviews would be incomplete without a mention of the USA online casinos considering the fact that Las Vegas is synonymous with gambling.
Casinos online have become an extremely lucrative as well competitive industry with the operators introducing new promotions on a daily basis. Promotional activities include attractive bonuses, prize moneys, jackpots and other irresistible offers aimed at making your online casino experience as memorable as possible.
When zeroing in on an casino online, you not only need to avoid blacklisted online casinos at all times, also take into account the licensing jurisdiction of the operator. Following is a list of some of the most reputed online casino licensing jurisdiction and their importance to the player.
Alderney is one of the best licensing authorities in the world and when you play at an online casino licensed by Alderney, you can rest assured that you your personal data and winnings are secure. Owing to the strict rules and regulations implemented by the Alderney Gaming Control Commission, online casinos have to get the gaming software tested and approved by the Commission, publish periodic reports as well as display a clock on the screen at all times to ensure that the players always keep track of their playing time. A clock is something that is never seen at any brick and mortar casino.
Moreover, Alderney certified online casinos have strict pre-set rules and a player has to wait for a minimum of 7 days if he needs to modify these rules in any way. Online casinos with an Alderney certification also give the players the choice of opting out from gambling for a period of 6 months or more without any fine being levied or any fee being charged when he decides to resume playing. The Alderney gaming licence is the least popular amongst the operators as a result of these stringent licensing rules.
Antigua and Barbuda
Antigua and Barbuda was the first ever licensing jurisdiction for casinos online. Though they appear to be committed to fair and transparent play, their rules are not as strict as one would expect. Service providers are required to regulate the age of their players, display warnings on their websites regarding the harmful effects of gambling as well as publish information on getting help for gambling addiction. Their focus with regards to software testing is also more on security than the actual game.
The service providers are required to fulfil a lot of financial obligations, ensuring the players peace of mind and security where money is concerned. In fact if you have any complaints and the same is not resolved to your satisfaction, you can approach the Antiguan Directorate of Offshore Gaming who will review and investigate the issue if necessary.
As a licensing authority, Costa Rica is a joke. Once the operators have paid the license fees, they accountability ends. Costa Rica does not have any specific legislations with regards to gambling and nor do they have any official bodies to oversee online casino activities. Operators have a free hand and you have no legal recourse in case of any complaints against operators who have been licensed by Costa Rica.
Most of the online casinos are licensed in Gibraltar. In fact so many of them have their licenses issued in Gibraltar you would believe that it is reputable licensing jurisdiction. As the licensing fees are rather low, the government is not inclined to take any interest in the workings of the operators. The Gibraltar licensing authorities have a very poor track record in resolving player disputes.
Isle of Man
Isle of Man is one of the respected and reputable licensing due to its commitment to remain a strong regulatory force in online gambling. This is also one of the authorities promoting online gambling both in the UK as well as abroad. Isle of Man has, since its inception in 2001, regularly made changes to their policies in order to stay atuned to the changing times and ensure player protection.
Applications are thoroughly scrutinised before issuing licences. Online casino operators have to demonstrate transparency and fairness in the games being offered and are also required to prove that they have sufficient funds at any given point of time to facilitate payments to players as and when requested.
Majority of the online casinos have been licensed in Kahnawake, an Indian territory based in Quebec, Canada. The governing body has basically collected the licensing fees and allowed the operators a free rein. As legal issues in the US have prevented many online casinos from trading in the US, the Kanhawake Gaming Commission has gradually lost licences to EU approved jurisdictions.
Many of the big Microgaming powered online casinos are licensed at Malta. The Lotteries and Gaming Authority (LGA) of Malta has its guidelines in place and operators are required to ensure fairness and also prove that they have sufficient funds for payouts at all times. The LGA does not assist players in case of any disputes. However, they do try and facilitate contact with the casino on the player’s behalf.
Download / No Download Casino
There are two types of online casinos – download and no download. The main advantage of a no download casino is that you can start playing as soon as your account is active without having to download heavy software on your computer and block space. On the other hand in case of downloadable games, the software can be more reliable, especially if your internet service is prone to fluctuations. The graphics of downloadable games are also better as the software is bigger.
Download or No Download – irrespective of which you choose, as long as it is a reputable casino, you do not need to worry about security, software or payment issues.
Mobile Casino has been defined as “a casino which allows players to access the online casino website and games offered, by using a mobile device and a wireless internet connection”.
Nowadays it is very easy to find a mobile version of any online casino. This was a big step for the operators of online casinos as the players can continue to play on the move. Mobile casino give players unlimited access to casino games whenever they want – this was a big step for the online casino operators. The introduction of mobile casinos has resulted in an exponential growth in the number of daily players, resulting in even more innovations in the online casino games industry.
Mobile casino operators are, today, offering exclusive promotions to players using their mobile devices to play casino games. In fact, some of the players prefer to play on their mobile phones as the games have great animation, at times even better than the online versions.
One of the most important feature that needs to be taken into account before signing up on an online casino site is the security environment of the website – especially since you, as a player, will be sharing not only your personal information, but also your financial data (bank account details, credit card numbers, etc). You need to be absolutely sure that your personal and financial details will not be compromised in any way. In order to make the most of the online casino experience, you need to be sure you can count on the operator to safeguard your data and a favourable online casino review is just not enough.
The encryption technology used is what makes an online casino secure and also makes it difficult for the hackers to access personal data of the members. You need to verify whether the selected online casino offers 128-bit SSL (Secure Socket Layer) data encryption. Anything else will not afford you the security needed to play at an online casino. The data encryption information is found on the casino’s Security and Privacy Page.
Secure banking options is another aspect of the security that you need to consider. The online casino operators need to offer you the best security possible – there should be no compromise where this is concerned at all. Secure banking options not only cover your deposits, but also your withdrawals.
The eCOGRA seal of approval is another thing that you need to look for before choosing your online casino – this is usually located in the footer on the homepage. The eCOGRA seal of approval proves that the casino provides a dependable and fair gaming environment. eCOGRA also offers a mediation service helping players fight for their rights in case of any trouble or mismanagement by the operator.
Besides these obvious security signs, it is also important that you exercise prudence while playing online and not divulge your personal details to the other players – they are at the end of the day, nothing more than faceless strangers and there is no way of gauging their intentions in wanting to be friends with you. Being the proverbial “Doubting Thomas” is called for here.
After creating your account of any of the online casino websites, you need to make an initial deposit in your gaming account. This is one of the biggest hurdles for new online gamer as they are rather apprehensive about virtually disclosing their personal details in order to move cash in and out of their accounts.
Most service providers are aware of their customers’ apprehensions and always on the lookout to ease money matters for them. Almost all the service providers give you the option of paying through:
- Credit Card
- Debit Cards
- Bank Transfer
- Money Transfer
- Bank Cheques
Once you make the payment, the money is added to your account and you will be able to start playing.
We simply cannot stress the importance of customer support service for online casinos enough. In fact the last of customer support is the single biggest complaint of the players using online casinos. Most of the operators of online casinos do not have any knowledge or background of customer service and hence they do not realise the importance of paying a lot of attention to the same.
Customer support service in the case of online casinos can be categorised as follows :
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): This section contains a gamut of questions and answers that are asked so often that the operators post them on their websites so as to help the players. The FAQs usually cover a wide variety of topics and issues concerning online betting and hence it is always advisable to check the FAQs before trying out the other available customer support options.
Email: We can safely comment that email is the second most frequently used form of customer support by the online casino players. Sending your complaint/concern via email, helps you keep a record of the same. You also get the name of a contact person who replies to your email – this is always helpful.
Telephone Number:A customer support telephone contact number is an absolute for online casinos. If an online does not furnish either a local contact number or a toll free number, it would be best not to deposit any money in their account. In fact, you, as a player, would be better off selecting another online casino.
Chat Support: Chat is direct and immediate support – this woks along the lines of ICQ or Messengers. Chat support allows you to receive an immediately reply to your queries.
At least one of the abovementioned customer support services should be available to the players 24×7.
Irrespective of the kind of casino games you prefer, please remember that there is always a risk involved. It is important and advisable to familiarise yourself not only with the different games on offer, but also be aware of the downfalls of gambling – the most important being – addiction.
Online casinos is a form of entertainment and should remain so. Always withdraw your winnings regularly and taken a break every once in a while. Remember, at the end of the day, its your hard earned that is on the line – please do not squander it away.