November 5, 2022
The road to online crypto-gambling has always been bumpy and uncertain. Although many casinos offer this payment method, some operators and regulators remain skeptical about crypto-gambling. In the UK, for example, few legal online casinos support crypto payments despite the green light from the UKGC. So, why is cryptocurrency gambling yet to reach its true potential? This 5-minute read digs deep inside the mystery.
Virtual gaming money isn't an entirely new concept despite providing no returns apart from entertainment. Thankfully, the birth of digital coins in 2009 allowed online casino game developers and players to use other payments apart from fiat currencies. These days, many regulated online casino sites accept payments in Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Litecoin, and other digital coins.
Here is how crypto payments work; every transaction is recorded on a digital ledger saved on many computer networks. This public ledger uses blockchain technology, protecting it from manipulations and hacking. Simply put, crypto payments are decentralized, unlike traditional payments, which are approved by central banks and financial institutions.
But a beginner with the concept of crypto-gambling can feel intimidated by the process of depositing and withdrawing. Surprisingly, cryptocurrency payments are quick and straightforward. Head to the casino's cashier, choose a digital coin, then copy the transaction address. Now, you can use that address to transfer funds from the crypto wallet. The reverse is true for cryptocurrency payouts.
Before discussing the controversial side of crypto-gambling, it's essential to give credit where it's due. Cryptocurrencies are revolutionizing how most people view online casino payments. Because it's 100% decentralized, anybody can buy and gamble with cryptocurrency. These anonymous payments mean authorities won't snoop around on your gambling transactions. Crypto casinos often accept players from jurisdictions where online gambling is illegal.
Another main advantage of crypto payments is swift and free transactions. This again takes you back to decentralization. Because banks and payment service providers like PayPal, Skrill, and Neteller don't approve transactions, payments are instant and free. For example, Visa and MasterCard payouts can take up to five business days as the bank has to approve the transaction. And that's without adding the transaction cost, which's typically above 5% of your winnings.
Lastly, online casino bonuses are often bigger on Bitcoin gambling websites. Consider this; an online casino can reward new sign-ups with a 0.10 Bitcoin match deposit bonus. Taking the current BTC valuation against the USD, this would be a whopping $2,000 welcome bonus. The truth is that few casinos offer new players this much. Just don't forget to read the bonus terms.
Many economies have declared BTC and other digital coins legal. For example, countries like Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, and Saint Lucia have adopted the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank's DCash. However, countries like China, Bolivia, and Algeria have placed a blanket ban on Bitcoin transactions. This begs the question; why are some governments and players skeptical about cryptocurrencies in 2022?
Controlling the financial market is critical for any government's budget aspirations. Authorities can manage the flow of fiat currencies like the Euro, Dollar, Pound, Yuan, Yen, etc. They can even introduce new policies to strengthen currencies and track money movement within the economy. In return, this makes it easier to track fraudulent activities and fix the monetary policy where possible.
But with the decentralization of digital coins, governments lose control over the currency system. Blockchain technology is public property that doesn't allow any central authority. This means governments cannot introduce monetary policies to manage cryptocurrency payments and values. The best they can do is create their own cryptocurrencies.
Governments control the country's economy and finance with help from financial institutions. Governments collect revenues to fund their budgets by regulating banks and money flow. On their part, financial institutions can give out loans to the public and make billions of profits. But after the introduction of cryptocurrencies, central banks and financial institutions have lost business to some extent. This means a financial loss to the government.
Cybercrime threatens to cripple the financial sector worldwide. And the anonymity and decentralization of cryptocurrencies can only make things worse. For example, the FBI recently discovered a cyber threat called "Water Labbu" that infects scam cryptocurrency websites with malicious programs to steal coins from hackers. Also, in October 2022, hackers stole crypto coins worth $100 million from the Binance-linked blockchain.
Besides these security concerns, some online casinos don't offer BTC because they can't verify the source of income. This is a mandatory KYC (Know Your Customer) procedure in most jurisdictions, like the UK, US, Canada, Malta, etc. All in all, cybercrime is one of the primary hindrances to the growth of the cryptocurrency sector.
Bitcoin (BTC) became publicly available in 2009 and is today the most popular digital coin. About 21 million Bitcoin coins were available to mine during its inception. Today, over 900 Bitcoins are mined daily, and there are about 2 million left. Now that's a lot of money going by the current conversion rates.
Speaking of conversion rates, BTC has high supply and demand, making it the most valuable digital coin. When preparing this post, BTC's value was $20,209.50. Now, if 2 million are yet to be mined, that's more than $40 billion lying somewhere waiting to be collected.
But this valuation makes BTC a no-go area if you're still new to Bitcoin gambling. In November 2021, Bitcoin's valuation exceeded $65,000 before dropping to $46,000 in December. That's a $20,000 drop, which means serious losses for those who purchased it in bulk. So, before joining the cryptocurrency gambling industry, follow the trading lines keenly.
When buying your first Bitcoin, deciding where to save it is critical. A cryptocurrency wallet is a digital vault for saving, buying, selling, and managing BTC and altcoins. For this reason, ensuring the digital wallet uses modern encryption technologies like PIN, fingerprints, or facial recognition. TouchID and FaceID can make wallet access a breeze and ultra-secure simultaneously.
In addition to wallet encryption, ensure that the wallet gives you unlimited access to private keys. These are randomly generated phrases that can have 12 to 24 characters. Whoever has this key has total control over the wallet, which only you should do. Also, no one would want to ask for permission from the custodian whenever they wish to access their digital coins.
Another vital security consideration is the backup features. While having the wallet's private keys is critical, managing them is another thing altogether. For most people, jotting down the private keys is the first solution. But not everyone is good at saving records. That's why the crypto wallet should offer cloud backup to install the wallet app and sign in via Apple or Google if you lose the wallet device.
It's unclear whether the online gambling industry will embrace cryptocurrency payments completely. And the present situation of Bitcoin doesn't help matters.
But the good news is that regulators like the UKGC and MGA have been progressive regarding the issue. Most regulators don't discriminate against crypto-casinos when issuing licenses.
So, do you want an opinion from OnlineCasinoRank? Here it is; crypto gambling is safe and secure when using reliable coins like Bitcoin, Litecoin, Tether, and Dogecoin. And yes, the online casino should have a legal and reputable license.
Born and raised in Rwanda, Jean-Paul Uwizeye seamlessly connects the world of online casinos to Rwandan enthusiasts. With a unique blend of Western gaming insights and deep Rwandan cultural roots, he's a go-to localizer for engaging and relatable content.