The world of online gambling isn’t as safe as the world of online news, sports, streaming video, or even banking. Online gambling is a risky minefield and full of sharks that are just waiting to take advantage of the highest bidders. While other countries have murky, at best, tips for finding a legitimate online casino, the UK has some guidelines laid out to help online gamblers not get trapped in a scam. Their biggest, and most obvious, recommendation is to avoid any site that isn’t licensed by the UK Gambling Commission. While you could blindly search and guess which ones are licensed by the UK’s Gambling Commission, they have made it exceedingly simple to find reputable online gaming sites by simply having a listing of which ones they have provided licenses to. It’s not only the government that links to the casinos, the casinos should also link directly back to the government’s own listing, which provides quite a bit of transparency on the part of the casino and a great deal of comfort to any high roller who wants to put money down on some online poker. There are also other telltale signs about whether an operator is compliant with the UK’s gaming laws. Each site, in order to have and keep their license, must provide information on how to gamble safely. This means that they should have a section of their site dedicated to what to do about gambling addiction, how to monitor your gambling use, and tips about how to limit the time you’ve spent on their site or the amount of money you’ve put in. They are also required to clearly and obviously lay out a complaints procedure. This is to protect you, the consumer, in the event that you and the online casino have a dispute. Finally, it should also provide information on how to protect young and vulnerable people from making serious mistakes with their money that they might not be aware of. If the casino you’re looking into doesn’t have one, or any, of those pieces of information, they are either acting without a license or they are simply noncompliant with their responsibilities as a license holder. Either of these things are red flags, even with licensed casinos. Think about it this way, if they’re breaking the rules of the country as a licensed casino why would you think they wouldn’t break the rules with your money? In either of these cases the UK may take action against the casino and there is no guarantee that you will get your money back from any predatory casino. Another good sign of the legitimacy of a casino is the presence of terms and conditions. Simply put, if the casino site you’re on doesn’t have terms and conditions, steer clear. The terms and conditions may be cumbersome and have a lot of legal mumbo-jumbo that you may not fully understand (who does?) but it will at least give you some idea of what they expect and what you should expect from them. It will also let you know about any restrictions on introductory offers or bonuses that they may give you as well as letting you know if the casino accepts users from the UK. Also, check the terms and conditions for information regarding withdrawal limits. The withdrawal limit won’t tell you if it’s a legitimate casino or not, but it is something nice to know. One extremely important thing to look for in the terms and conditions is about what happens to your money if the site goes under. This is an unfortunate risk that you must be willing to take with any online casino and although casinos have rules about where they can store their money, there is no rule about protecting that money if the site goes bust. Although the UK Gambling Commission does take into account financial stability when handing out licenses, they do not continue to monitor this or advertise it for a few reasons. One of the biggest reasons is that they feel it would hurt the business by making people have second thoughts about putting their money into it and making it more likely to go under rather than giving it a fair shot at continuing to operate. Finally, take a look at where your casino is owned and operated from. While many countries take steps to make sure that their casinos are owned and operated according to the rules of not only the source country but the countries that it may serve, some don’t. Finding out where your site is located can make all the difference. If the site has an unknown origin then don’t put your money in their hands. This should give you a good idea about what the ins and outs are regarding the online casinos you’ve been shopping around for. Pretty simple, right? Now go out there, spend wisely, and make some money!