What Makes an Online Casino Trustworthy?
At the time I am writing this, a lot of people are still under quarantine because of COVID-19, and are looking for something fun to do at home. So, we are seeing growth in online casino player bases.
If you are thinking about getting into online casino games for the first time, you may not have a lot of experience with choosing sites to join.
While there are many different criteria you need to consider, such as the bonuses and games which different sites offer, one essential criterion in every case is trustworthiness.
How do you establish whether an online casino you are thinking about registering on is trustworthy or not?
Let’s go over 11 key features of trustworthy online casinos now.
Regulation and Licensing
The first sign that you are looking at a legitimate, trustworthy online casino is a license from an official government regulator.
You should be able to find the exact license number. Looking up that license number or the company name on the regulator’s website should bring up the corresponding entry in their database.
If there have been any complaints filed against the casino, you should be able to view them in that same database.
Ideally, there will be no complaints. If there have been, check to see if they were successfully resolved so that the company has been able to maintain its license.
A Strong Existing Reputation (Not a Must, But Nice to Have)
At the very least, you should always be able to identify the company that owns and operates an online casino. If you cannot, you are not looking at a trustworthy site.
Once you do find out the name of the company (usually listed in the terms and conditions), you can proceed to conduct some additional research on both the site and the company itself.
A strong sign that you are dealing with a trustworthy casino is if the site and/or company already have an established, positive reputation in the gambling community online.
A newly-established company, however, may not have had time to build such a reputation yet. That does not mean that they are not trustworthy. You will need to rely on context clues (i.e. the other factors on this list) to make a determination.
If you do decide to take a chance on a company that is not well-established, you may want to take steps to minimize your risk, such as only making the minimum deposit to begin with.
Regular Testing for Fairness
Another assurance that you have found a trustworthy online casino is if they are conducting regular tests to make sure that their games are working properly and fairly.
Ideally, these tests should be run by a third party rather than in house. A third party does not have a vested interest.
Also, third parties can be accredited. An example would be Technical Systems Testing (TST), an Accredited Testing Facility as approved by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission (AGCC) in the UK.
When a testing service is regulated by a government authority, you know that it is trustworthy.
So, if a trustworthy testing service verifies the fairness of games at an online casino, that establishes trust for the casino.
Provably Fair (Not Required, But Nice to Have)
A related feature which also points toward trust when you are evaluating a casino website is when the games are Provably Fair.
This is a special feature at bitcoin casinos which lets you check firsthand whether the results of the games are actually random.
Because this is only a feature you will find at bitcoin casinos, its absence does not demonstrate any lack of fairness or trustworthiness. But if you find it, it provides you with additional confirmation that you are on a trustworthy site.
Not sure if bitcoin is for you? Take a look at this article!
Reasonable Fees, and No Hidden Charges
There is a wide range when it comes to deposit and withdrawal fees as well as other charges and penalties which you may encounter at online casinos.
You will probably need to check out a few different sites before you start to get a feel for what constitutes reasonable fees, and what constitutes exorbitant fees.
Preferably, all fees will be expressed clearly and in the open, rather than buried in the terms and conditions.
The language of the terms and conditions also is important. They should be as thorough as possible in explaining the circumstances in which fees might apply and how they work.
If the language seems fuzzy or contradictory, there could be hidden charges.
If you do join a casino and get charged a fee that you do not understand, ask for clarification.
If the charge was not disclosed anywhere in the terms and conditions or elsewhere on the site, you may want to consider playing somewhere else from that point foreword.
When considering a casino, check customer reviews to find out whether the site has a reputation for paying out swiftly and in full up to the limits stated.
After joining a site, you should hold that site up to meeting the standards it has set for itself.
If the site says that it will process all withdrawal requests within 48 hours, it should manage to meet that time frame the majority of the time.
Also, assuming you are not exceeding the withdrawal limits and you do not have a pending bonus which would tie up your withdrawal, there should be no reason that you should not be able to withdraw the full amount that you request.
Encryption for Your Information and Funds
Hacking has become widespread, and identities are compromised every day. So, another sign that you have found a trustworthy online casino is if they encrypt all of your personal data and your account funds to keep them safe from hackers.
Many online casinos have a page where they discuss their exact security protocols, or answer that question in their FAQ. If you do not find it there, you can always ask a customer service agent.
Transparency Concerning Bonuses
Bonuses and free spins are part of the fun of playing at online casinos, where benefits can far surpass anything you might get from being a member of a VIP program at a traditional land based casino.
Nevertheless, it is common for players to be confused by some of the complex terms which govern the promotions that they claim.
In particular, rollover requirements may be confusing, particularly if they are not clearly explained along with the consequences for attempting to withdraw before meeting them.
Shady casino sites can take advantage of that confusion to prey on hapless gamblers.
Trustworthy casinos explain bonus policies and rollover requirements and how they relate to withdrawals clearly and in detail, often with helpful examples.
In doing so, they ensure that you can comfortably accept a bonus offer, and they help you avoid making mistakes which could cost you your winnings when you withdraw.
Solid Customer Service
24/7 customer service also indicates that you may have found a trustworthy site to gamble on.
But it isn’t enough just for service to be stated as such; it needs to actually be available.
In other words, you shouldn’t need to wait for half an hour just to talk to someone. Worse, on some sites, there is never anyone to talk to—the live chat window is really just there to function as a form to send a message.
If you try asking questions on a site at a couple different intervals, and each time, you receive a quick answer, you may be dealing with a trustworthy site.
You also should consider the quality of the answer as well as the attitude of the service agent.
The answer should be clear and complete. The agent should know what they are talking about and seem genuinely enthusiastic about helping you get what you need.
Quality Site Design and Gaming Software
Next up, there is the matter of site design. As you are browsing a casino site, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do the pages load quickly and in full?
- Does the site display well on your browser and device?
- Are there missing or broken elements?
- Do forms work?
- Is it easy to navigate the site and find what you need?
- When you test games in demo mode for free, do they work reliably?
When a site is well-designed and games load and play reliably, those are demonstrations that the company running it takes customer experience seriously.
Genuine Care for Customers
Finally, one last indication that you are looking at a trustworthy online casino is one which is hard to objectively prove, and that is goodwill.
But as you consider all of the factors above, you can probably form a subjective impression of whether the casino genuinely cares about treating its customers fairly and giving them an enjoyable experience.
When a site exudes an authentic impression of goodwill, you will feel safe and comfortable opening an account.
Where to Play!
After reading all of these tips you’re probably in the mood to just jump right in now and get some gaming done. We cannot say we blame you!
We still believe that you should be checking out all of these sites for yourself, but we’d still love to at least get you started!
We already mentioned Cloudbet just a little bit ago, but we’re going to do it again. They deserve it!
While they take a couple other forms of payment as well, Cloudbet is a bitcoin heavy site, they love it.
While you will find some pretty good bonuses and promotions going on over there at any time, there’s one that we feel everyone should be aware of at all times.
At any time when you join up, Cloudbet will match your inital deposit up to 5btc!
As of the time of this writing, 1btc is just a little over $10,600 so you can imagine just how high your welcome bonus can get! You only get to do this once, so we recommend depositing all you safely can to ensure that you get the highest bonus you can!
There is one downside to Cloudbet that we know of. They’re not available to those of us in the Unites States. Sorry, and we’re not too happy about it either!
Bovada is another one of our faves, offering up not only a fantastic casino, but also one of the greatest sportsbooks you’ll find anywhere in case you decide to dip your toes that way!
Bovada not only takes bitcoin like most other sites these days, but they also accept more traditional forms of payment if you want to keep it old school.
Joining up over at their casino could get you all kinds of different Welcome Bonuses depending on which way you want to go and how you want to deposit.
Right now you could take advantage of just some of the following offers…
- $3,000 for joining up at the casino
- $3,750 for joining the casino with bitcoin
- $250 for joining the sportsbook
…and the list goes on!
BetOnline is like Bovada in the sense that you’ll not only find a great casino but also a great sportsbook as well!
Once again, you’ll find many different ways to make a deposit while joining up or reloading as well as other incredible bonuses to take advantage of.
One of the things that does separate them is the Poker Room over at BetOnline. Here you’ll find a whole mess of tournaments, specials, exclusive bonuses, free contests, and the list goes on and on.
Best things they offer right now as of this writing…
- $3,000 Welcome Bonus
- $100 Risk Free Casino Wager
- 10% Weekly Rebate
…and tons more. You’d be silly not to go and at least check them out!
One Last Way to Spot a Trustworthy Site: Time and Experience
Everything I have gone over above should help you to identify potentially trustworthy online casinos when you are conducting research.
But the best way to know a casino is solid is to play there and to do it for a long time.
Obviously, that isn’t a realistic strategy for you to figure out where to gamble. After all, you are doing your research so that you will build those kinds of longstanding relationships with the right sites in the first place.
That is why we have done it for you. We have been playing at many of the casinos we recommend for years now, and we regularly update our reviews to reflect our most recent experiences as well as our long-term impressions.
Ready to find your next trusted online casino? Check out our online casino reviews now.
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