Bitcoin Gambling: How it Opened a New Era of Online Gambling

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Online casinos that allow users to gamble with cryptocurrency have prospered due to a lack of regulation. Sometimes all you need is an email to get things done.

In the United States, online casino gambling is prohibited in all but six states, and it is governed by tight restrictions that make it difficult for customers to move money in and out of licensed online casinos.

When it comes to bitcoin, though, those criteria don’t hold up as well.

Internet casinos that allow consumers to gamble with bitcoins are thriving, allowing them to operate and advertise with relative impunity while avoiding restrictions. Hundreds of websites based outside of the United States now provide a quick method to start gambling, with many of them conducting scant background checks on their players.

Another factor for gambling addiction is a lack of tools to keep people from playing. Crypto casinos, according to one gambling addict who spoke to NBC News on the condition of anonymity, do not offer the same addiction-mitigation tools as regular gambling services, such as the ability to self-ban.

In recent years, both in the United States and overseas, online gambling has exploded. Online sports betting is now allowed in 22 states and Washington, D.C. Online casinos that operate outside of the United States but lawfully serve Americans must register with each state in which they do business, and they frequently attempt to verify their customers’ physical location. They accept deposits via credit cards or bank transfers in order to comply with federal anti-money laundering requirements.

Cryptocurrencies are also experiencing a surge, with businesses vying for the right to sell bitcoin, ether, and a range of other digital assets. According to a recent NBC News study, one out of every five Americans has invested in, traded, or used cryptocurrency.

Crypto casinos are thriving as well. These websites, which advertise a variety of casino games, accept a variety of payment methods, including credit cards, as well as bitcoin and ether, which may be played on digital versions of slots and roulette. Because none of the crypto casinos are based in the United States, government oversight is and will be very difficult.

As the crypto gambling market expands, this could alter. According to a survey conducted by Chainalysis, a blockchain analytics firm, there are presently roughly 70 crypto-friendly casinos in operation, with a total revenue of $2.8 billion so far this year. According to Chainalysis, the industry brought in $10 billion last year, a 64 percent rise from 2020.

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