Since online sports betting and casino gambling have been on the rise all over Wales, Ireland and the UK, the UKGC came out with a new regulation stating that all online betting and casino sites must sign up to Gamstop in order to continue to operate.
GamStop is a UK non-profit organization, which tries to help UK players self-exclude themselves from online gambling for different periods of time. How does it work? The software is based blocking the player’s data and blacklists them on participating casinos, this also includes blocking any promotional emails throughout the exclusion period.
GamStop is a program for UK Casino players alone. The organization has partnered with almost all UK gambling sites, and at the moment there are only a handful of casinos not on gamstop. To join the gamstop program all a player has to do is fill out an online form with the personal details on the GamStop website with details on time period for exclusion.
GamStop is a part of UKGC’s effort to promote responsible gaming and looks to introduce a self-exclusion license option for all gamblers from the UK. The software also blocks and restricts sign-ups of an account with UK licensed gambling providers. And although the software is not completely invulnerable, and players may still find non GamStop sports-books or casinos online, it is still a tool that helps most gamblers with gambling addiction to keep them away from it.
Some brand providers have been taking advantage of this situation and have been promoting non-licenced brands for players still looking to bet or gamble after self-exclusion. A non-licenced brand means there is no one to protect you if there is an issue of some sort and some have been found to be non-responsive and even completely disappear after accepting deposits from players.
Casino’s not on Gamstop are businesses. Their ultimate goal is to make a profit while engaging their customers so they come back and invest more time and money in the game. Allowing their customer to enjoy the game requires the players to feel safe and protected. Laws and regulations have been put in place to ensure the games are run ethically and legally.
Because the goal is to make a profit and because not every player can win every game, suspicions have been brought to light that the games are rigged. Some of the more popular theories for proof include the number of bad beats, the idea that wins are structured to keep people playing longer (if lesser-quality players win a few games, the idea is they’ll stay around longer in hopes of winning again), and hands are dealt in such a way to increase the size of the pots to entice players and to bring a larger yield to the casino.
While the accusation is that games are set up in a way that the player never wins, the truth is the gambling sites not on Gamestop must have an advantage or they will go out of business. A house edge, however, does not indicate a game is rigged. In addition to the randomness programmed into the game, there can also be streaks of bad luck that will affect individual players. Even when the hands don’t feel random, this is no indication of a rigged game.
What Games are Most Likely to be Rigged?
The most regular accusations of rigged games occur around card rooms. The feeling is that poker tables are rigged to improve profitability, such as when higher-than-natural odds are given to inexperienced players. Alternatively, an advantage can be given to skew all-in scenarios in the favor of the underdog.
A theory is that odds that should fall 78-22 would be changed to 80-20. However, such a scam would be too easily detected. In that case, odds could be shifted in the favor of a player that called an all-in versus the player who bet the all-in. This also may be too easy to detect. Another option is that non-all-in hands would be altered in favor of the player who called the bet.
The ramifications of this are obvious. It allows a player to have inside information that would not be available to a player any other way. An understanding of game play and betting patternswill allow an observant player to realize when this form of rigging might be taking place.
In fact, this is exactly what happened during a tournament at Absolute Poker back in 2007, when observant players questioned the tournament winner’s game play and instigated an investigation which led to the uncovering of a scandal in which online players were cheated out of up to $1 million.
For that reason, It is very important to find safe non Gamstop betting sites and avoid any kind of scam bookies and casinos. So, how can you distinguish a genuine betting site from a fraud one? Here are some of the ways you can do this:
- Do Your Research: Before registering yourself with any betting site, it is very important to conduct research in order to find if the site is genuine or not. Check what are the payment options that the website offers and what kind of bonuses and promotional offers these sites have. Also, check the ease of money withdrawal from your betting account as the last thing you want is your money getting stuck.
- Check Online Reviews: One of the best ways to know about the reliability of a non Gamstop casino is to check the reviews by other players. There are numerous third-party websites such as TheBestCasinos that provide complete information along with punter reviews on numerous sites.
- Licence – Licence – Licence! Make sure the casino or betting site you select has a license from a body of authority. This could be a Malta licence (MGA), a Curacao licence, a Gibraltar licence or any other form of respected gaming licence. But DO NOT under any circumstance deposit funds with a brand that does not hold a licence.
- Send support a message with an inquiry before you deposit. If they are responsive and helpful that’s a good sign.
Finally, and most important, start small. Make sure you can withdraw your funds before you go play or wager big money. The last thing you want is to have a significant sum in your account and have no one to turn to if the site goes dark on you.