The Risks of Online Gambling
Online gambling is any form of betting conducted through the Internet, including virtual poker, casinos and sports betting. The first online lottery venue opened in October 1994, and the US federal government has long regulated these sites. The 1961 Wire Act, which works with antiracketeering laws, originally oversaw the industry, but was later reinterpreted by the Department of Justice in 2011 to allow states to legalize sports betting and other forms of online wagering.
Online casino games work by connecting players through the internet to a central server, which hosts software that runs the actual gambling games or bets. The player can then play the games or place bets in real-time through their computer or mobile device. The games are designed and created by software providers who license their software to online casinos. In addition, most online casinos are required to hold a gambling license from their respective jurisdictions.
While many people consider online gambling to be less addictive than land-based gambling, it is important to understand the unique risks associated with this activity. There is growing recognition that Internet gamblers are a diverse group, and additional research is needed to untangle the factors that impact their risk of developing problems. Identifying, detecting and acting on early risk indicators may reduce the prevalence of gambling-related problems.