Many people carry a perception that online casinos inherently involve a security risk. The sense is that these sites can be somehow “sketchy” or less than reliable — and naturally, anyone who has this sense will be reluctant to engage with said sites. At the same time though, there’s an argument to be made that the perception of risk is misguided. Typically, it based on the fact that a lot of online casino access is prohibited in the U.S. It does not come from any actual knowledge of risks on the platforms.
Beyond this distinction though, it can also be helpful to consider some of the specifics of the issue. Specifically, let’s look at some of the common myths regarding the security of online casinos.
The biggest misconception about online casinos with regard to security may well be that they are major targets for hackers and other cybercriminals. It’s easy to understand the logic behind this line of thinking. Online casinos deal in very large amounts of money, all things considered, so it’s only natural to assume they’d be targeted. However, this is essentially a misunderstanding of cybercrime. As we discussed in a piece on security against hacks, the easiest targets are usually smaller companies with fewer resources. Big, established, well-run platforms tend to employ protocols and regulations needed to guard against attacks, which leads most cybercriminals to focus on easier targets, as opposed to just wealthy ones.
This doesn’t mean casino sites are never targeted, but there is no reason to see them as particularly popular targets. More likely it is just the opposite.
Many also choose not to engage with casino platforms out of an assumption that said platforms will require personal payment information. And particularly if you buy into the idea that casino platforms are popular targets (which again is not the case), this sounds less than ideal! But the reality today is that most reputable online casinos allow for a variety of payment styles. Safe processors like PayPal and its various competitors are commonly acceptable for gaming deposits, and some sites are even beginning to accept cryptocurrency. So, while you often have the option of setting up a casino gaming account with your personal information and credit card, you will not be required to do so.
Given the vast sums of money that are exchanged in total at online casinos, some also assume that they will have to deposit significant amounts of money and play expensive games. Naturally, this makes perceived security risks feel all the more severe. But it’s also inaccurate, seeing as there are plenty of opportunities — even where the most popular and in-demand games are concerned — to play for little to no cash. Consider as an example the growing and trendy bingo category within online casino play. With online bingo gaining popularity and influence, you might expect sites to cash in by only highlighting high-stakes games. And yet Foxy Bingo, one of the platforms most directly responsible for this category’s growth, does just the opposite. It provides numerous free play options, as well as bingo games that require only very small deposits.
Now, it’s still the case that both in bingo and in established games like poker, slots, and so on, you can spend greater sums and deposit large amounts of cash. But there is not a need to do so should you wish to play more conservatively.
Others still simply fear that online casino sites are not properly regulated, and can thus fall short where security and fairness are concerned. This perception is likely a result of the fact that U.S. efforts to prohibit casino play have led some to less trustworthy, offshore sites. Those can on occasion be regulated poorly. But the leading casino platforms that make up the bulk of the industry are essentially run like major companies.
For those with doubts about all of this, an article by The Guardian detailing shakeups at the UK’s Gambling Commission should be reassuring. The Gambling Commission is responsible for regulating some of the industry-leading sites in Britain, which incidentally have worldwide reach. And while the article does highlight some problems with regulation of late, it also makes clear that company executives and government reviews are involved in addressing those problems. In short, it conveys that there is a very real and very large system of regulation in place overseeing many of the biggest casino platforms in the world.
Broadly speaking, there are always risks associated with online activity. And those risks become all the more significant when money is at play. However, as these misconceptions illustrate, the impression that casino sites are for any reason particularly risky tends to be overblown. And if you have specific concerns about cybersecurity relating to your online activity, additional information right here at eHacking may be of service!