There are not as many scam casinos out there as some suspicious people would have you believe, but they do exist. There are many ways you can avoid these sites, but the main way is to simply trust an established site. We often find ourselves wondering just why so many people are desperate to test their luck against new casinos, doing their best to find out if these sites are legit or not and even risking their cards and their information by taking their chances.
There is no need for this. Simply choose a site like Royal Vegas, one that has been around for years and one that you know is legit. It uses the popular Microgaming software, which many of the newer sites do, and it also has the best bonuses and loyalty club, so why try your chances with something new and risky, when you can rely on something older, more experienced and 100% trustworthy?
Still, if you are already a member of Royal Vegas or you still insist on trying your luck elsewhere, there are some steps you can take to test for legitimacy.
The Steps to Finding a Legitimate Casinos
There are many steps that you can take to discover whether a particular casino is legitimate or not. We performed all of these with Royal Vegas and you can too if you want a good baseline. If you run these steps with a casino that is not legitimate, it will stumble with more than one of them and will likely fall down before the steps are completed.
Reference: Your first step is to ask yourself where you first heard of the casino. If a friend gave you a reference and can be trusted, you’re off to a good start. Ask them about it, dig a little deeper, but but wary if they are being pushy and are asking that you use their affiliate link.
If you found the site on an obscure affiliate site, or you found it by Googling a keyword for casinos, further tests are needed. If a gambling site is top of Google it is a good sign, but not if it is in the “sponsored ads” section, as any site with money can make it here.
Check & Google: Once you have the site name, the first step you should take to check if it is legit, is to simply Google it and run some checks. You want an experienced and legitimate site, and scam sites know this, so they will claim to have been around for many years, even though they have just opened. If you Google them and nothing shows up, be suspicious. If the site has been around for some time and has turned bad or been bad from the start, Google will also bring up a lot of links to forums, blogs and blacklists warning you to stay away.
If all you can find are pop-up affiliate sites saying how great it is, with no actual reviews from actual players, be wary.
Licenses: All legitimate sites need to be licensed and certified, and whilst the “best” fake sites will fake these licenses, they are easy to check. Firstly, all legal gambling sites will need to be regulated. For those based in Europe, they usually go with regulation authorities such as the Malta Gaming Authority, or with ones located in the Channel Islands or Gibraltar. Other popular spots include Curacao and Panama. If you can’t find any information about any such regulator, then you should avoid the site. If you can and you can verify by visiting that regulator separately and finding the online casino, then you still need to look into other areas.
Firstly, all of the games on the online casino need to be audited by someone like eCOGRA. They will have a badge on the bottom of their site if they are and this badge should be hyperlinked to a certificate that proves they are audited. You should also look for security certificates to make sure you are dealing with a site that is safe.
Customer Support: Scam sites are not interested in helping you, just as they are not interested in hiring people to answer phones or operate live chat. Therefore, finding phone numbers and live chat facilities that work, is a good indictor you are dealing with an official site. Some scam sites have these, but they don’t work, the phone number is non-existent and they don’t reply to emails. So, rather than assuming they are okay because they advertise such services, check them out yourself. Send them an email or two, see how quick they respond and if they are professional and friendly with it.
Withdrawals: Finally, if you are still unsure about the legitimacy of the site and have joined and deposited, then be sure not to let your winnings build up. When you have won a small amount, enough to make a withdrawal worthwhile, then go for it. Only when the withdrawals makes it through to your account can you take things up a gear.