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Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Crypto Casinos: That’s How Dangerous They Are

Casinos rarely miss new trends. The first online casino already existed in 1994. Now some casinos on the Internet also offer the opportunity to gamble with Bitcoin. But the short dream of money and the thrill of the crypto gambling house harbor dangers.

The pandemic, in particular, is causing casinos to move into the digital space increasingly. Google is now spewing out countless crypto gambling sites, all trying to lure in with similar perks: bonuses, free spins, and fast deposits and withdrawals without proof of identification. Is this the secret of quick money? Probably not.

No license to play

Due to their pseudonymous nature, cryptocurrencies offer more privacy than transactions with Visa and Co. Above all, and this cannot be reconciled with the State Treaty on Gambling introduced in 2021. Because in Germany, you can only operate your online casino with a license. All players are therefore subject to strict state supervision. If you want to enjoy a comprehensive gambling experience despite strict rules and use your cryptocurrencies for gambling, you would have to switch to a casino without a license.

These non-licensed providers bring an almost unrestricted gaming experience. Whether it’s blackjack, baccarat, jackpot games, or roulette, anything is possible in the Internet’s unlicensed casinos. However, you pay a big price for this freedom: security.

Fraudulent providers program games in such a way that the fun remains. However, the player usually does not notice that he is exposed to unfair practices and is sometimes ripped off. In the worst case, the dodgy providers cream deposited coins directly. It is almost impossible to prove the fraud and thus be correct since the deposit is made anonymously.

Is Crypto Trading Already Gambling?

Another problem is the high volatility, i.e., the enormous price fluctuations of cryptocurrencies. If you make profits in the casino, these are linked to the cryptocurrency’s exchange rate. Expected profits can quickly shrink rapidly. The volatile market makes gambling in the crypto casino even riskier. This exposes you to the classic risks of the crypto exchange and the additional disadvantages of gambling.

As with the crypto exchanges, quick profits are possible; but you can just as well put a lot of money in the sand. Many therapists already see trading in cryptocurrencies as gambling addiction, as symptoms similar to a classic casino or slot gambling addiction can occur:

  • Sufferers constantly borrow money from family and friends, pawn their belongings, or steal to fund their addiction.
  • They believe that they will soon make a big profit to make up for losses.
  • Those affected experience mood swings, depression, irritability, restlessness, and hopelessness.
  • They also deny the problem or lie to those around them.

In bad cases, the path to addiction leads to the dream of big money through occasional high profits. Fueled by the dopamine released during trading, the path can lead further to compulsive behavior, isolation, and ultimately classic addiction.

Different gaming behavior at crypto casinos

The digital world is increasingly changing player behavior. Ingo Fielder, the co-founder of the Blockchain Research Lab in Hamburg, has been researching his main topics for years: gambling and blockchain. The expert explained to BTC-ECHO:

Online gambling tends to be more addictive than physical gambling. There are various reasons for this. Above all, they usually run much faster than physical games of chance. Many offers in the online area also still take place in a legal gray area so that the regulatory requirements and thus player protection is less pronounced.

Ingo Fielder, Blockchain Research Lab

The choice of online casino payment method also affects player behavior, says Fielder:

The type of means of payment – chips, points, cash, electronic money, credit card, etc. – has been intensively examined in gambling research. The further away the payment method is from the feeling for cash, the lower the inhibition threshold and the more intensive the gaming behavior. The same has not yet been investigated for cryptocurrencies, but a similar effect can be expected.

Ingo Fiedler, Blockchain Research Lab

No proof of identification, no self-exclusion procedure

Age verification is simply impossible with crypto casinos as no personal information is required. In this way, the operators of these casinos make it possible for minors to participate in gambling, who are often even more susceptible to addiction.

Furthermore, casinos cannot use the voluntary self-exclusion procedure for problem gamblers suffering from an addiction. Addicts can withdraw from gambling entirely by applying to licensed and reputable providers. Applicants will be placed on a self-exclusion list of names. This effectively blocks you from all operators who have joined the self-exclusion program.

Here crypto casinos offer a loophole for gambling addicts: through the back door, excluded users can continue playing there unsupervised.

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