Enjoying the excitement of playing for money at an online casino involves more than simply deciding which one offers the most generous welcome bonus. There are literally hundreds of sites to choose from including many offering specialised game play that are subsidiaries of the largest companies such as Aspire and White Hat. But hidden amongst the listings are fraudulent, even pirated sites, that at first glance appear to be convincing. New players should never register for an account until they have considered the following safeguards to reassure themselves that their chosen online casino is legally trustworthy.

Licensing and Security

A properly licensed online casino pledges to abide by stringent regulations regarding a range of conditions including security and fair play. Some of the toughest regulations are set by the United Kingdom and Malta. Conducting a check on a UK online casino is relatively straightforward through a search on the Gambling Commission’s website. To earn and keep a licence an online casino must submit itself to regular inspections from official auditing and testing organisations to ensure that all game play and transactions are conducted fairly. There should be seals of approval displayed on the website from auditing agencies such as eCOGRA and Price Waterhouse Cooper. One of the procedures they regularly check is that the Return to Player percentages are accurate. Unauthorised sites are notorious for cheating players by secretly altering the RTP rates of their games. These fraudulent sites are also vulnerable to hackers who are intent on stealing players’ winnings and personal details. Legal online casinos employ sophisticated firewall security to ensure the safety of their site. They include Secure Socket Layer (SSL) security that operates on 128 or 256 bit systems that are also used in banking. Encryption coding which mixes details and code together is used to keep players safe from fraud. Players’ personal data is either securely stored with a provider such as VeriSign or on the casino’s own hard drive.

Software and Winnings

The most trusted online casinos have a large library of popular games from the major software providers such as Microgaming, NetEntertainment and Yygdrasil. Fraudulent sites have a poor choice of games while pirated versions of well-known providers won’t be able to offer the latest releases. A trustworthy online casino will usually be able to offer their games across a wide range of platforms including mobiles. Another sign of legality is the method used for withdrawals. Licenced casinos have a range of payment options including money wallets such as PayPal or Skrill. However, the most important is bank transfer as this proves that the casino has been verified and is authorised to pay into your account. Customer support services should be available at all times and not just through email. Evaluating how trustworthy an online casino happens to be is easier if you use a comparison site so you can find the right one without any difficulty.