Learn the positive and negative aspects of using cryptocurrency to gamble with at online casinos.
Despite all the restrictions brought on by the pandemic the global gambling market is expected to exceed $500 billion dollars in 2021 which is a significant increase over 2020. A good part of that increase will come from online gambling sites. Although some people remain skeptical of the validity of online casinos, they are a great alternative to land-based casinos as long as you know what to look for in a site.
An important consideration when choosing an online casino is payment options. One method that is becoming increasingly popular is cryptocurrency. Many popular sites are hybrid casinos and accept both fiat currency and cryptocurrency as a means of payment. Gambling online with cryptocurrency has some definite advantages. The following are some of the pros of using crypto to gamble:
- Privacy: Using cryptocurrency to gamble with provides players with a higher degree of anonymity. Due to cryptocurrency being decentralized it is harder to track transactions. You will also not be required to provide as much personal and financial information to the casino site. The degree of anonymity will depend in part on the particular casino you are playing at. Casinos are often required to get a certain amount of information to meet KYC (Know Your Client) requirements for licensing. Online sites that are exclusively crypto tend to require less information.
- Increased Security: Online casinos take security seriously and use SSL encryption technologies to protect customer’s financial data. However, the blockchain technology used by cryptocurrencies provides an even higher level of security.
- Speed: It is generally much faster to complete transactions at online casinos using cryptocurrency. In most cases they can be completed almost instantaneously. Some other methods may require hours or even days for a transaction to be processed. Typically, if a transaction such as a withdrawal takes more than a few minutes it is because the casino is taking their time authorizing your request. This is a standard practice for many sites for withdrawals above a certain amount whether you are using crypto or fiat currency. The bottom line is that with cryptocurrency there is no third party involved in the payment process as there is with PayPal, credit cards and many other payment methods, thus cutting down on transaction time.
- No Restrictions on Location: Some payment methods will restrict deposits to online casinos in certain countries. In other cases the payment methods or currency used in some countries may not be accepted by the casino. There are also some countries where online gambling is illegal although an off-shore site will still accept wagers. Using cryptocurrency circumvents all these problems and allows users to play regardless of their location.
- Save Money: Unless the online casino itself is imposing a fee it is generally cheaper to transact using cryptocurrency. Many other payment methods make their income from charging transaction fees which is not the case with crypto.
- Provably Fair: Games that are designed to accept cryptocurrency are provably fair. The outcome of any game can be checked by the player using a cryptographic hash function. A lot of the top casino game developers like Microgaming, NetEnt, Play’n Go and others have developed games specifically for cryptocurrency. That being said, the majority of online casinos offer fair games that are checked regularly by an independent third party to verify fairness.
- Get Paid in Crypto: A lot of players like the idea of receiving any winnings in cryptocurrency. They can increase their cryptocurrency holdings with their winnings without having to go through an exchange
- Lucrative Bonuses and Promotions: Many online casinos offer some great bonuses and promotions aimed specifically at those who deposit to their site using cryptocurrency. The size of the bonus and the terms and conditions that apply will vary from site to site. In some instances the bonuses can end up being worth several thousand dollars. However, always check the terms and conditions before you accept a bonus as there are often restrictions that apply plus you may be required to use NDB codes to redeem the offers.
Although there are many advantages to gambling with cryptocurrency there are also some drawbacks to consider. Some of the disadvantages of using cryptocurrency to gamble include:
- Less Government Oversight: With no license and no regulatory body players have very few options if any problems arise with the casino they are playing at. That is not to say that cryptocurrency casinos aren’t licensed. Many of them are licensed and regulated. However, there are unlicensed cryptocurrency casinos in operation. Not having a license doesn’t mean they are dishonest but it if they are you are on your own.
- Volatility: Cryptocurrencies are always fluctuating in price and have some significant positive and negative price swings. You may have a substantial win at the casino only to find that your crypto’s value has dropped, wiping out your winnings. Of course, it could go the other way as well and work in your favor. It is a double gamble.
- No Take Backs: Once you have sent funds from your crypto-wallet they are gone. If you send too much or send funds to the wrong address there is no recourse unlike with credit cards and other methods that allow you to stop payment on transactions
- Lack of Familiarity: Although the cryptocurrency market has grown to over $2 trillion dollars, the majority of people have still never owned any crypto let alone used it in any sort of transaction. While it isn’t difficult to use, many are intimidated by the process and somewhat reluctant to give it a try.
Cryptocurrency has come a long way since Bitcoin made its first appearance in 2009. Online casinos aren’t in the business of losing money and the fact that more and more of them are accepting cryptocurrency speaks in the digital currencies favor. While there are both advantages and disadvantages to gambling with cryptocurrency it is ultimately up to the individual and what works best for them.