Gambling is all about taking risks, but you don’t want to take the risk of playing at a casino that will cheat you out of some of your winnings, or not allow you to win at all. Some gamblers insist that all online casinos are rigged – ‘impossible’ things happen too often for them to be truly random. This view is fairly widespread, but online casinos are on the whole very fair and safe places to gamble. How online casinos cheat looks at some of the reasons gamblers believe legitimate casinos are not on the level, and what tricks rogue casinos use to steal people’s money.
Online gambling has enjoyed a meteoric rise in popularity recently. And like any new venture, it has attracted some dubious characters along with the genuine operators. The big money involved will always attract unscrupulous operators, so it’s always wise to be wary of new casinos. Games are not always fair. But before looking at how rogue online casinos cheat and swindle punters, let’s look at some of the reasons many gamblers believe all online casinos are rigged.
Why do some games appear rigged?
In roulette, all game results are completely independent of one another – there is no way to predict a spin based on the previous result. For every spin, the chances of hitting Red or Black remain equal. So if you think that after losing five times with Black the next time you will definitely hit Red, you could well be in for a surprise. The Law of Averages applies – that frequencies of events tend to even out only after enough trials. And in roulette reality, ‘enough trials’ means thousands.
In gambling, the belief that one random result can affect those that come after it even has its own name – the Gambler’s Fallacy. The roulette wheel by default, however, does work in favor of the casino, which can create the impression the game is rigged. The house edge is made possible by the presence of the zero pockets. Betting on Red or Black, you have 18 winning numbers out of 37, so your chance of winning is 46.37%. Including the zero, the house has 19, so their odds are 52.63%. And of course, all casino games are designed to provide the house with an edge.
And playing online, you’re playing alone, which means an important psychological effect to consider. Imagine playing Blackjack in a real casino at a table with four other players. Even if you hit an unlucky streak and lose ten hands in a row, you are still likely to see others winning, so you know the casino is honest. Online, you don’t see anyone else win or, more importantly, the casino lose, so ten losing hands seem to be against all probability. In reality, you have exactly the same chance of winning online that you have in a real casino.
Can casinos rig slots?
Random Number Generators (RNGs) are software used to generate random outcomes for every spin, deal, or ball drawn. Since RNGs use formulae to generate results, some people understandably have suspicions that game organizers have fiddled with the algorithms. However, RNG software must be tested and certified by independent, industry accredited third parties. So with this in place, there’s no way for the casino to influence the outcome of slot spins. If you plan to play slots online, you should first make sure the platform is using RNG software. Always check for certification on their website, so that what you are playing has been reviewed and is indeed fair. You can also read more here about checking the legitimacy of online platforms How To Spot a Fake Casino Online.
Better transparency is also available nowadays from Blockchain technology, with decentralized game platforms, such as FairWin. Using the Ethereum blockchain, the game process information is recorded in the system and not on the organizer`s server. All transactions are logged and made visible to all players. Players can, therefore, be certain that all the outcomes are indeed random, and the casino has not manipulated them during the process of the game. Ethereum blockchain technology has not yet become widespread, but in the future games on blockchain may replace traditional online casinos.
How online casinos cheat – misleading T&C’s, the bonus trap
There are rogue casinos, however, and probably the most common way they cheat punters is by means of deceptive terms and conditions attached to casino bonuses. That bonus code seems too good to be true? It may well be. Reading Terms and Conditions is unfortunately very boring, but also very important. So If you decide to accept a bonus, always read the terms carefully first – offers may look attractive at first sight, but can be ridden with traps.
Let’s say you are choosing a platform on which to play, and have your shortlist down to two casinos. One is advertising an amazing bonus – a 400% bonus for a $100 deposit – but does not specify what wagering requirements are necessary to get the money. Naturally, you opt for the one offering a better bonus. Unfortunately, not having read the terms and conditions, you have now deposited your funds at a scam casino. And if you stay and play because you’ve already deposited, you are now open to any other poor practices the casino operates. Five More Ways to Spot Scam Casinos gives more tips on spotting rogue sites.
Scam platforms love using unreasonable terms and conditions on bonuses to trick people out of their money. A casino may use wild rollover requirements, of up to 99x. They may even have hidden deposit demands, where you must place another deposit in order to claim your bonus wins. Some bonus terms won’t allow you to win more than you’ve previously deposited. And sneaky game weights may mean only a very small percentage contribution toward the wagering requirement for receiving your bonus. So no matter where you’re playing, even at recommended web casinos, always read the terms and conditions on promotions and bonuses before acting on them.
How online casinos cheat – refusal to Honour Pay-outs
Refusals to honour pay-outs are also often related to misleading T&C’s. Casinos may not go completely rogue and disappear with your money. They will instead cite a dubious reason as to why they can’t pay out your winnings, leaving them free to continue operating and ripping off other players. In more extreme cases, however, if rogue casinos don’t want to pay out, they may simply close your account.
One well-known excuse for doing this is that you were in breach of their T&Cs by having multiple accounts for the same IP address. This is of course nonsense, but if you don’t fight for your winnings, you will obviously never see them again. Another common trick is accusing you of using cheating software. This excuse comes in very handy if you are playing electronic versions of table games like blackjack or roulette. And it is enough to close your account and void your winnings.
The only real way to avoid this is by playing at a reputable web casino, so check out our list of online gambling sites in the USA for trustworthy platforms where you can gamble safely. And if you come across sites certified by eCOGRA, these sites are also a safe bet. They offer an additional service, acting as a mediator in disputes between players and online operators. They will step in, examine the evidence to make a decision, and help you if you are in the right.
Always check for encryption technology
One other thing is worth mentioning – it may not be just the casino who is trying to steal your money. If there is no small padlock icon in the URL toolbar on entering a flash casino, then it isn’t safe to enter your financial or even personal details. This padlock indicates that the online casino uses modern digital encryption technology to protect information from outside parties. Without it, anyone can hack into the link you are sending your sensitive information through and steal your details, and ultimately your money. For some Microgaming flash casinos, you may have to launch the instant play casino first before checking for the padlock. If there is no padlock, do not play here, as it is a sure sign of a rogue casino. All good online casinos, such as 888casino, are encrypted and have the padlock to prove it.
Nowadays the online casino industry is one of the most regulated of all industries and knows how online casinos cheat. Numerous industry watchdogs will name, shame, and blacklist scam online casinos relatively quickly. They will also step in to investigate and resolve any player disputes. So before you start to gamble online, be sure to check out your options. Read Gamingzion casino reviews, where you’ll find all you need to know – games, bonuses, languages, deposit and withdrawal options and customer service details. Or try out one or more of our secure casinos at Online casino sites in the USA. And do so safe in the knowledge that the casinos we approve are licensed, regulated, and – above all – honest.