The huge rise in online betting due to increased connectivity and improved technology has also given rise to unethical activities in the name of it. Scammers can easily hide behind the shadow of anonymity on the internet and take advantage of inexperienced bettors in this huge and lucrative industry. It is therefore a good idea to do thorough research and keep an open eye for these red flags that an unreliable betting site may show,
1. Absence of a proper license:
If a website does not hold genuine license and registration or is found to be faking one, then punters should stay away from it. To check the authenticity regarding the license of a betting site, players can go through the public database of the approved ones, maintained by the biggest regulators of the gaming world like UK Gambling Commission, Malta Gaming Authority, Isle of Man, etc.
Sometimes it can also be seen that a gaming site is headquartered in a country which has no effective regulatory body. This is another cause of alarm for bettors since the bookmaker has the free will to engage in illegal activities, without facing any repercussions.
2. Insecure Website:
In order to avoid falling prey to cybercrime, everybody should know that, a secure website which involves online financial transactions must have an SSL encryption (indicated by the padlock sign at the beginning of the URL) which most fraudulent websites do not have.
There are some fraudulent websites which mimic other legitimate, popular websites by using similar graphics, interface etc. If a website or a page arises any doubt in the minds of punters, they can verify the domain themselves by mailing them or reaching out to them via their official Twitter accounts.
3. Unrealistic bonuses:
Online betting sites offer many promotional offers and bonuses to draw in more customers. Having said that, if players come across a bonus offered by a site which sounds too good to be true, it probably is. This might be a ploy to draw in maximum deposits from players before they cease to exist in a few days, leaving the players with no pay-outs. They might also add many complicated terms and conditions with that bonus offer which may be counterproductive for players.
4. Twisted terms and conditions:
Bettors should be careful if the terms and conditions of a site lack transparency or the authorities keep changing them frequently. Any online gaming website will obviously have its own set of terms and conditions that players should abide by. However, it should be considered alarming if they contain overly complicated restrictions which trick users into tying up more and more money with them.
5. Huge difference in odds offered:
It is wise for bettors to consult websites like BetIndia, India’s #1 betting site in order to ensure maximum pay-out with respect to the odds offered by several bookmaking sites. If an online betting site offers odds which are much higher than other sites, chances are the bookmaker has muffed their market towards their favourite.
6. Complaints and bad reviews:
Reviews shared by fellow users and experts is a great way to measure authenticity of bookmaking sites. If a site is found to be very unpopular among most discussion boards or reviews, then players must stay away from them. Players should conduct these searches on trustworthy platforms like Reddit, the SBR forums, Covers.com etc.
7. Life span and change in ownership:
It has been observed that fraudulent websites do not get to operate for too long; they get shut down frequently. So, a measure of a good bookmaking website would be how long it has been operational. Another thing players should check is the ownership of these sites. Loss making websites keep changing ownership to try and associate with big names in the gambling industry to jump back in the market.
8. Insufficient contact information and poor customer support:
Legitimate betting sites should accept criticisms and co-operate with customers to resolve their issues. If a bookmaking site does not have proper avenues through which they can be contacted or seem unwilling to do so, then it should not be trusted at all. If, while reaching out to a site, players face very poor customer support, it might be because the fake site has appointed untrained and unprofessional representatives which is also a sign of alarm.
9. Delayed transactions:
A big sign of unethical websites is delay in payments. Cash-strapped websites hold on to the winnings and provide fake assurances to players. It has happened several times in the gaming industry that websites have at first, delayed the payments, gave insincere excuses and one day disappeared.