It is always wise to tread lightly when you are making any type of transaction online. This certainly applies to online gambling, so it is very important to find the safest sports betting sites. There are many different things to take into consideration, and we will take a look at all relevant factors here.
The most fundamental question is whether or not the overall practice of betting online is safe, and the jury is in. People have been making sports wagers over the Internet for many years at this point. In most free countries (with one notable exception), it is perfectly legal to make sports bets online.
In fact, there are some countries that have government monopolies on sports gambling, and Sweden is one of them that comes to mind. When a site has an online gambling license that has been issued by a jurisdiction that provides effective oversight, you can rest assured that it offers safe betting online.
There has been a thriving sports gambling market place in Europe for decades, and countries there have taken advantage of online sports gambling as a way to generate revenue. The United Kingdom has a very well developed online gaming licensing process. Their licensees are some of the safest sports betting sites on the Internet.
Under their online gambling laws, it is illegal for gaming websites that are located in other countries to advertise their services in the UK. This is stipulated in Section 331 of the Gambling Act 2005. Though this may sound restrictive, in general, this law opened up gaming avenues for approved entities.
There was an exception made when this piece of legislation was adopted in the United Kingdom. The department for Culture, Media and Sport was empowered to “whitelist” other jurisdictions using their own discretion.
To be included on the whitelist, a jurisdiction must adhere to the same standards that are set forth for UK gaming concerns under the terms of the Gambling Act 2005. All countries that are part of the formally established European Economic Area (UEEA) are whitelisted for Internet gambling purposes.
Countries in the UEEA include France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Ireland, and many others. Companies that are established in any these countries that take wagers online can be looked upon as safe betting sites.
In addition to this wide array of European countries that have the safest betting sites, there are a number of smaller jurisdictions that have been included on the UK whitelist. Alderney, Antigua and Barbuda, Gibraltar, Isle of Man, and Tasmania have all made the list, so gambling sites from these places offer safe betting online.
Sites that are registered in the United Kingdom and UK whitelisted sites are definitely among the safest sports betting sites that are out there. This being stated, there are many other individual jurisdictions that uphold very rigid licensing standards for online gambling.
We have used the licensing requirements to help us evaluate sports betting sites for safety. The most stringent jurisdictions use the same basic criteria. One essential facet is the background of the key personnel that will be involved in the operation of the online sports betting website.
They look for proven business and technical acumen, and they put applicants through a vetting process with regard to past conduct. The most thorough regulatory bodies will require the presentation of a business plan, and it will be thoroughly reviewed.
Perhaps the most important factor that is taken into consideration is the financial strength of the company that is attempting to obtain an online gaming license. The licensing bodies that truly care about legitimacy want to make sure that license holders have the ability to honor their commitments to their players.
Many legitimate jurisdictions require applicants to have rules in place to protect players, such as well-defined dispute processes. Some of them require website operators to post warnings about potential gambling problems that can arise when compulsion takes hold.
Without question, the quality of the online gambling license that has been issued is a key factor when you are looking for the safest sports betting sites. And finally, the real world experiences that are shared by players are perhaps the most telling pieces of information.
We have weighed all relevant factors to identify some of the safest sports betting sites on the Internet. They are listed below, and you can use this roster as a starting point when you are trying to determine the site that is right for you:
There has been a seismic shift in the sports gambling environment in the United States after a historic Supreme Court ruling. Traditionally, gambling on sports was illegal because of the existence of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA).
This law effectively placed a prohibition on sports gambling in every state in the union except Nevada. The Silver State was grandfathered in because legislators representing the state would not vote for the anti-gambling legislation if it applied to Nevada.
At that time, Harry Reid and Richard Bryan were the Senators from the state of Nevada. As long as their state was exempt, they couldn’t sign the bill fast enough, because it gave Nevada a permanent monopoly on sports gambling (or so it seemed at the time).
In spite of this prohibitory statute, the voters in the state of New Jersey said yes to a constitutional amendment that would make sports gambling legal in their state in 2011, and it was signed into law in 2012. However, it was blocked when professional sports leagues and the NCAA filed a lawsuit.
As you might imagine, they cited the PASPA law that made sports betting illegal on the federal level. The case made its way to the Supreme Court, and in 2018, the Justices found in favor of the state of New Jersey. Now, any state that wants to allow legal sports gambling is free to do so.
Clearly, the safest sports betting sites for players in the United States are sites that are licensed by states that have legalized Internet-based sports gaming. New Jersey, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia have approved legal online sportsbooks at the time of this writing, and these are certainly safe betting sites.
Though the window is there for states that would like to take advantage of this opportunity to raise revenue, many if not most of them will never do so. As a result, the majority of people in America still have to look for websites that offer safe betting online that are not specifically sanctioned by the government.
We have found that Bovada is one of the safest sports betting sites for American players. Our researchers have given them a four-star rating, and the feedback that players provide is quite positive. This is one possibility, and you can check out our sports betting site reviews to explore other options.
Whenever money changes hands over the Internet, there are going to be some inherent risks. Credit card companies provide a layer of protection, but in some instances, you cannot make deposits and receive withdrawals from your card issuer. This is especially true in the United States.
There are companies that are licensed in jurisdictions that do not have very strict standards, and in fact, some countries have no licensing requirements at all. Some of these websites may not be completely reputable, but they can certainly hire top-notch web designers. A site may look very legitimate, but this does not mean that you can trust them with your hard-earned money.
Opportunists that are intentionally trying to take advantage of people certainly exist. However, in some cases, sports gambling website operators that originally wanted to do the right thing can run out of funds. This is another potential risk that is inherent if you roll the dice with a company that has not proven its financial strength to a regulatory body.
Of course, in addition to the misdeeds of a website, whether they are intentional or unintentional, there is the matter of hackers and identity thieves. It takes a considerable investment to implement truly state-of-the-art protective mechanisms that keep accounts secure.
Even big companies that have invested heavily in industry-standard protective measures have experienced breaches. This is a risk that will always exist, and there is really no way around it.
There are some things that you can do to minimize your exposure to risk when you are betting on sports through the Internet. As we have emphasized, solid regulatory oversight is going to be a telltale sign of the safest betting sites. The reviews that you can read from other players and professional researchers like ours are also invaluable when you are trying to find safe betting online.
We are not necessarily suggesting that you withdraw money from your account every time you place a winning bet, but it is wise to keep the money on deposit to a minimum. For example, if you set aside a gambling bankroll of $5000, you don’t have to deposit it all at once. You can protect yourself if you make sure that you never have too much money in the account.
Getting back to the matter of potential hacking, consider the choice of password wisely. Don’t use a common string of numbers or phrases that consist of words that logically fit together. Combinations of lower and uppercase letters and special characters interspersed with random numbers are most effective.
It is also wise to change your password periodically, and you should not use the same password for multiple different accounts for obvious reasons. If you take our recommendations and apply some common sense, you should be able to enjoy online sports wagering safely.