When choosing an online casino there are many steps players can take to make sure their information is kept safe and secure. While there are many online casinos that take great care of their customers, there are some that don’t have the best intentions. Knowing how to safeguard personal and payment information is worth the few minutes of effort involved. There are also financial options available that are much safer than others and can significantly reduce the risk of fraud. This article will address the best practices in preventing these unfortunate events from happening in the first place.
Selecting an Online Casino
When choosing an online casino, the player should get the overall feel for the website. Trusting one’s gut is the best way to get a read on whether or not the online casino is reputable. Poking around the site for a while will lead the player to discover their business practices and ethical standards. If the player is unable to determine what these things are, it’s typically better to exit the site and not provide any personally identifying information.
Online Resources Available to Check Credentials
Casino websites have many criteria that are legal and industry standards. Proper licensing should be disclosed on the website and easily verifiable with research. If the player wishes to verify the licensing, it should be done outside of the casino website and on an official government website. Only authorized representatives are able to update this information, so it’s considered to be reliable. Secondly, digital badges are assigned to casinos meeting standards for being safe, trusted and fair. eCogra and TST are two companies that provide these badges. The benefit of digital badges is that they must be provided by the credentialing company, and aren’t able to be duplicated. Should a casino not have any information regarding auditing or licensing credentials, avoid the website altogether.
Another piece of information required by legitimate websites are resources on responsible gaming. This should include contact information for help, as well as any programs the casino actively participates in. For example, the UK participates in Gamble Aware. This is a program that allows problemed gamblers to identify themselves to casinos. The casino agrees to “block” them from playing in person or online if chosen. Many casinos will allow players to set limits so they’re not betting more than they can afford. Should the casino not show any concerns regarding responsible gaming, it’s probably not a legitimate entity.
Another great source is looking up online reviews. Players are free to share their experiences and concerns. While it’s common to come across the occasional disgruntled customer on review sites; the majority of the reviews tend to be accurate, and are a reliable source of information as to what the reputation of the casino really is. Other information available includes blacklisted casinos. These are websites that have had many complaints and have been effectively banned. It’s never a good idea to frequent these sites if they’re still in existence.
Additional Online Safety and Security Tips
Websites that legitimately want to protect player’s information and provide customer service will publicly post their contact information. If customers have any difficulty whatsoever locating this information, it’s a bad sign. The company should also have hours and days of operation. Also, if these hours seem rather limited, it’s probably not the best company to do business with. Information regarding the website’s method of keeping information secure should be clearly displayed as well. Companies such as McAfee and PayPal will often provide badges that the company is a trusted partner. Firewall and SSL encryption are typically used by online casinos. The casinos will always display whether or not they use SSL encryption, as it’s often a selling point. This technology masks information so that it can’t be seen as is should a hacker be able to get into the server. Online casinos are a heavily regulated industry and if the casino visited doesn’t appear to have these standards, it’s most likely not a reputable company or website.
Protecting Your Money
Players always want to know their payment information is safe and secure. It’s a scary thought knowing that information could be compromised by getting into the wrong hands. Using safe and reliable payment methods that have safeguards for fraud are always the best practice. Online wallets, also referred to as “e-wallets” are the best and most popular method to keep information safe. Some of the most popular options are PayPal, Neteller, and Skrill. These options allow players to only share the information with the service provider. This means that players can use the service to make the payment, without actually transmitting any financial information. Another benefit of using e-wallets is that they often provide the quickest processing times for online casinos, meaning the player gets paid faster. One account can be used for many sites adding additional benefit.
Credit cards are the next most popular option. Most card providers such as Visa and Maestro provide fraud protection as part of the service. The benefit of credit cards is that they are taken nearly anywhere and have a designated limit. The downside is that the players have to share the information repeatedly if playing on more than one site. Also, if a card is lost or stolen it must be replaced which can create a big inconvenience. The processing time is slightly slower and some online venues will only accept credit cards for deposits and not withdrawals.
While most online casinos are reputable places where the player will have a great time, there are a few exceptions. Protecting information online is critical to avoid major long-term problems that are costly. Taking these simple steps will help players avoid trouble in the first place; and, if it does occur can be corrected quickly and easily. Checking out online casino credibility is easy and very reliable. While all other safeguards such as paper shredding are also important, taking a few extra minutes to avoid a major and potentially costly incident is a wise investment.