Let me ask you a serious question – Do you know which gambling sites are safe? Meaning, do you know which casinos, poker sites, and sportsbooks won’t blatantly steal your money?
I’d bet you don’t – and it’s putting your bankroll at risk.
The truth is, there are hundreds, maybe even thousands of different gambling sites. The crazy thing is only a fraction – may be two, three dozen – are safe to play at.
We know which ones are. Would you like us to show you?
If you want to only join the safest sites then these are the ones we recommend in 2016. We base our decisions on the most recent information we can get our hands on.
I want to show you how to spot an unsafe gambling site. The goal would be to spot them before they’re gone with your money.
But first I want to show you some examples of poker sites and sportsbooks who were at one time considered a safe place to play, but then decided to screw their customers over.
Some for millions of dollars.
Let’s look at those examples now.
1. Lock Poker
Lock Poker started off well enough. Like many new sites they came out guns blazing. Lots of promotions. Signing on pros. Tons of guaranteed tournaments.
Players were happy here. Then things went downhill.
Towards the end of 2012 Lock Poker was having problems getting payments out. First, there were delays. Then the delays got longer.
After awhile management started to do less and less to ease players’ concerns.
The last payment they made to US players was on April 2nd, 2014. The last payment players outside the US received was in January 2014.
But they continued to accept deposits anyway.
They eventually closed their doors in April 2016. By then they owed more than 400 players millions of dollars. Reports suggest they owe anywhere from $10 to $15 million dollars.
These guys started off on the wrong foot from the moment they launched their business in 1994.
The gross thing? They’re still in business.
Over the years they’ve done all sorts of shady stuff. For example:
That barely scratches the surface. Simply Google BetUS and you’ll see they’ve done everything from slow pays to pointing at their T/Cs and claim they don’t have to pay you.
This doesn’t even begin to cover all the shady gambling sites out there, either. What’s worse is many of these companies are still in business and accepting money from players who don’t know any better.
The problem with unsafe gambling sites is sometimes you never see them coming.
It is possible for a company to start off with good intentions, only to go to the dark side when they run into problems or just decide to get greedy.
But how can you tell? How can you figure out a gambling site is unsafe …and …preferably before you lose your entire bankroll?
Here are some warning signs:
1. Are cash outs slowing down?
If cashouts are normal, say within a week or two, then start to take 3 weeks, then 4, then 5, and so on, you might want to pull your money out …while you can.
Sometimes it’s just a hiccup. Gambling sites can have problems with their processors. Maybe laws change or a company decides they don’t want to do business anymore.
But often times it’s a sign the company is having a financial issue. And I can’t think of too many gambling sites that have come back from an issue like that.
2. Does support give you the runaround? Does management dodge your questions? Have they disappeared altogether?
Another surefire way to tell there’s a problem is for a once happy-to-help support team and management to go dark. They disappear off the face of the earth.
Usually, this will happen right along when they’re having money issues.
3. Does the site look for reasons not to pay you?
If the gambling site tries every way possible to call you a pro, say you broke T/Cs, failed to uphold your end for any reason, I highly encourage you to find somewhere else to play.
Most companies will give players the benefit of the doubt. Not always, but often.
No legit company will blatantly lie or go out of their way not to pay you your winnings.
4. Is there chatter in the forums?
If you gamble at all online, you should have an account at one of the major forums that revolve around what you gamble on. There are general forums for casinos, poker, and betting, as well as more niche options for blackjack and poker SNG players.
Choose one and get involved. And stay tuned in.
You’ll see problems creep up every now and then. But the posts you want to pay attention to are the ones that repeat themselves over and over again. Players not getting paid. Players getting screwed out of their bonuses. And so on.
That’s how you can tell for sure a gambling site is safe …or not.