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The current state of crypto gambling

Crypto gambling is rising in popularity but there are many things you need to know before you decide to dip your toes into it.



Whether or not they participate in it, most people are familiar with the traditional way of gambling, such as in a casino. Thanks to the rise of the internet, online gambling became possible, too. Then, as long as people live in states that permit it, they could bet from wherever they were, often using smartphones and specialty apps.

Now, there’s another possibility for people interested in gambling: cryptocurrency gambling.

1. What is cryptocurrency gambling?

Cryptocurrency gambling, or crypto gambling, allows people to bet using cryptocurrencies. Many people view it as safer than other forms of gambling because it stores all transaction data on the blockchain. Blockchain entries are unchangeable once validated, which could stop crypto gamblers from being scammed.

People also have two options when exploring the world of cryptocurrency gambling.

There are cryptocurrency-only sites, which are limited to gambling and paying out through crypto. One thing to keep in mind is that, since cryptocurrencies are relatively new, some of these sites are as well. As such, it’s crucial to research thoroughly before choosing a place that only deals with cryptocurrencies.

In contrast, some well-established entities decide while running their online casinos that they will start offering cryptocurrencies as options for people who want to gamble with them or receive winnings that way. That choice can make longstanding casino brands more appealing to a broader segment of individuals — specifically cryptocurrency enthusiasts.

2. Is it legal?

One of the questions most likely on the minds of people interested in crypto gambling is whether it’s a legal activity. Unfortunately, that’s not a straightforward query, since the answer varies by country.

In the United States, the Justice Department made a ruling in early 2019 that prohibits online gambling involving interstate transactions. Analysts say that since it’s difficult to guarantee payments aren’t getting routed through other states, this decision will negatively affect online gambling as a whole.

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Previously, people in Delaware, Nevada, and New Jersey — states with legal gambling — could play against one another on the internet. Now, analysts say the Justice Department’s decision will prevent that, as well as interstate lotteries.

Cryptocurrencies help people conceal their online identities, though. Some wonder if they’ll be able to get around U.S.-based gambling restrictions because of that fact. It’s too early to say for sure.

The legality of crypto gambling will depend on the country. For instance, gambling in Nevada is legal and individuals could play against other people on the internet. (Photo by Joshua Resnick via Shutterstock)

In the United Kingdom, fixed-odds offline betting terminals suffered due to a decision that drastically reduced the maximum stakes allowed. That decision could boost the online gambling sector, including the casinos that permit cryptocurrencies. The regulatory body that oversees gambling in the United Kingdom notes that any entity offering crypto gambling as an option must be a regulated company.

3. Regulatory cautions

One difference between all the casinos on the Las Vegas strip and cryptocurrency casinos operating online is that the physical destinations have to run according to local regulations, but things are not as clear-cut for crypto. For example, according to one source, the vast majority of cryptocurrency casinos have licenses in Curaçao, a Caribbean island off the Venezuelan coast.

Getting regulated there is cheap, quick and offers a relatively hassle-free approach. However, being a cryptocurrency gambling site monitored in a relatively obscure country could pose additional risks for players who have disputes. Trying to sort things out when circumstances take unexpected turns could prove frustrating and fruitless.

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4. Crypto gambling rising in popularity

Despite the possible risks of gambling with cryptocurrencies, people are quickly getting on board with it. On some blockchain platforms like TRON, the vast majority of transactions related to decentralized gambling apps. Perhaps that’s because users appreciate new ways to use their cryptocurrencies. Gambling allows them to combine entertainment with the hopes of winning money to invest.

Although sources indicate there are no best cryptos to use for gambling, some people prefer to use the ones connected to the blockchain platforms that most often handle gambling transactions. Additionally, since bitcoin is the first and most well-known cryptocurrency, it’s likely the most widely accepted option at established casinos allow these transactions.

5. Proceed carefully

When people investigate crypto casinos, they’ll likely see few or no differences between them and conventional online options. Those that permit crypto often have dozens of games and even perks like live dealers that help people get fully immersed. However, since crypto casinos are still an emerging trend, it’s smart to be exceptionally careful when deciding how much to bet or whether to do so at all.

Staying mindful of the possible pitfalls is essential for all kinds of gambling, including the crypto variety.

(Featured image by Kraevski Vitaly via Shutterstock)

DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation for writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.

Kayla Matthews is a technology blogger who regularly contributes to, MakeUseOf and The Gadget Flow. Follow Kayla on Twitter or check out her technology blog, Productivity Bytes.