Cybersecurity in the Age of Online Casinos
APRIL 25, 2022
In the past decade, as users increasingly rely on online platforms for their day-to-day activities, our online presence has become more significant than ever. Nowadays, technology is capable of tracking anyone’s digital footprint, and so cybersecurity has become more relevant than ever before. Cybersecurity is particularly significant when users are required to disclose payment details or other sensitive data.
Based on this, online casinos have had to adapt to modern times and incorporate security software to protect their clients.
HTML5 shaping mobile experiences
Nowadays, mobile casino games are safer than ever. This is primarily due to implementing security protocols and the latest software, but also HTML5, the standardized language used to build websites and apps. Amongst some advantages offered by this technology is improved security, particularly data security. When compared to its predecessors, HTML5 has fewer flaws in the coding, making platforms less vulnerable to malware. Since websites are no longer required to use plug-ins or external add-ons, this technology offers more consistency while keeping security risks to a minimum. Overall, HTML5’s main aspect is that it was created by a vast community, meaning it has been scrutinized and tested by hundreds of independent developers that have made it a robust and safe language.
In addition, this technology also guarantees a top-level of compatibility. HTML5 provides a safe playing experience and ensures that games remain enjoyable and running smoothly. For instance, gambling platforms such as Buzz Bingo need a high degree of compatibility, which allows them to feature the same titles on their apps and desktop version while keeping users’ information and details safe.
Encryption, a fundamental step
Vital for any website that handles large chunks of users’ personal information, encryption technology is absolutely necessary to keep online casinos safe. Encryption protocols, like SSL or TLS, are crucial to protect a website’s data. These protocols provide security during the exchange of data between applications and servers. These types of certificates digitally attach an encryption key to a company’s information.
This feature is designed to make data transfer safer, allowing the exchange of information without the risk of third parties accessing it unlawfully. Any site employing this type of technology is taking a decisive step in protecting players’ personal information against hackers and ensuring financial transactions can remain confidential and free from threats, as detailed by Help Net Security. To find out if a website has an SSL connection, look for a padlock next to the URL in the browser. By clicking on this icon, you can find information about the certificate and configure it.
For safety in online casinos, one of the most important aspects is payment solutions. It is essential that casinos allow players to use a variety of services that suit their preferences. From credit/debit cards to e-wallets, players can make their deposits or withdrawals using highly secure methods.
Nowadays, many online casinos also accept cryptocurrencies as payment methods. Cryptocurrencies have the advantage of enhanced safety as they are based on blockchain technology, as reported by The Coin Republic, which allows funds to be transferred with no intermediaries. For instance, banks and other financial institutions are usually not part of these types of transactions, which ultimately helps to make the transfers fast.
While these are some of the top cybersecurity tools employed by online casinos, other important software includes extra software encryption, two-step verification and end-to-end encryption.
The Situation: State securities regulators in Texas and Alabama filed two first-of-their kind enforcement actions against a company selling non-fungible tokens ("NFTs") to operate casinos in a metaverse.
The Result: The cease and desist orders issued against the company allege various state law violations, including making deceptive and misleading representations to investors that constitute fraud and offering NFTs as securities to the public without first registering them with the state commissions.
Looking Ahead: As regulatory agencies continue to monitor developing technologies, expect to see more enforcement actions in the United States alleging that companies are promoting and selling products that run afoul of regulations.
In two first-of-their-kind enforcement actions relating to NFTs, securities regulators in Texas and Alabama ordered a Cyprus-based online casino developer and its founders to cease and desist selling NFTs that allegedly were marketed and sold as securities. The Texas order, dated April 13, 2022, alleges that the company and its cofounders offered 11,111 NFTs in an unregistered and fraudulent securities offering to raise funds to operate virtual casinos in a metaverse. The Alabama Securities Commission, with the help of the Kentucky Department of Financial Institutions, simultaneously issued a similar order against the company and its founders.
According to a statement issued by the Texas State Securities Board, the company and its founders marketed their NFTs—which they named "Gambler" and "Golden Gambler"—as investment opportunities and promised potential buyers a share in the virtual casino's profits, forecasting as much as $81,000 annually. The statement further claims that the company told potential buyers that its NFTs were not regulated as securities because securities laws did not apply to NFTs.
The company allegedly planned to use a portion of the proceeds from its NFT sales to purchase "land" to operate virtual casinos in platforms like Decentraland, Sandbox, Infinity Void, and NFT Worlds, which are metaverse platforms. Metaverse casinos operate just like real casinos, except in virtual worlds. Using virtual reality avatars, customers can enter metaverse casinos and play casino games using cryptocurrencies. According to the allegations made by Texas and Alabama authorities, marketing materials promised owners of Gambler and Golden Gambler NFTs that they would receive monthly payments based on the profitability of the metaverse casinos.
The Texas order alleges that Gambler and Golden Gambler NFTs are securities under Texas securities laws and should have been registered before being offered to the public. The order further claims the company misled the public through deceitful and fraudulent statements concerning these products. This is the first time that securities regulators have issued cease and desist orders related to an NFT offering for a platform in a metaverse, but it is likely not the last. The Texas State Securities Board states that it has identified other securities offerings in metaverse platforms and is coordinating with other states to investigate and possibly pursue enforcement actions.
Four Key Takeaways
Metaverse ‘gambling casino’ NFTs BANNED by Texas and Alabama in shock crackdown in US
Apr 22 2022
TEXAS and Alabama have halted the sales of NFTs in metaverse casinos.
Securities officials from both US states cited fraud and violation of state regulations as the reasons behind the ban.
Texas and Alabama have halted the sales of NFTs in metaverse casinos.
The Texas State Securities Board (TSSB) filed an Emergency Cease and Desist order that specifically mandated Cyprus-based Sand Vegas Casino Club to stop its sale of non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Also named in the order were Sand Vegas Casino Club founders Martin Schwarzberger and Finn Ruben Warnke.
Officials noted that the emergency order was put in place to "stop an illegal and fraudulent securities scheme tied to virtual casinos – including virtual casinos in metaverses."
According to the document, the firm was reportedly building casinos in various metaverses, including on Decentraland and The Sandbox.
In order to fund their ventures, they were selling to customers more than 12,000 NFTs.
The NFTs, the order read, "entitle owners to various benefits, including a pro-rata share of profits generated by the internet and metaverse casinos."
However, the respondents are allegedly "advising purchasers that securities laws do not currently regulate NFTs and are considering further steps to obstruct the regulation of their NFTs."
In response, the TSSB has relegated the respondents' advice as "simply not true" and a "high-tech scam."
"The parties are concealing their locations, hiding the identities of
managers, misleading potential purchasers about their experience, and obscuring the significant risks associated with investing in their NFTs," the TSSB added.
Alabama regulators joined the TSSB in filing a cease and desist order against the same respondents.
According to that document, the respondents were "devising a scheme to obstruct any attempt to regulate the NFTs".
"They are falsely telling purchasers they can avoid securities regulation by implementing illusory features or use different terminology."
Alabama Securities Commission Director Joseph Borg stated that the metaverse "provides brands with new commercial opportunities, and investors are now being exposed to the latest high-tech products."
However, he noted that bad actors are now "leveraging interest in these opportunities and products."
"Virtual reality can leave you virtually broke,” he said.
Earlier this week, Schwarzberger, one of the founders and a respondent in the order, told Reuters that the company is complying with state regulators as well as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
“We are absolutely confident we can solve this situation and possibly even lead the way for other NFT projects,” he said.
Five Devices We Could Use for Online Betting Several Years From Now
April 27, 2022
The arrival of the internet has changed the gaming industry. Since most people nowadays have access to the internet on their phones and tablets, they can bet on sports and do things from the comfort of their homes. Since most of you are probably interested in betting apps, you can hop over here to find a listing of the top betting apps for Android and iOS. These applications are developed by some of the leading gambling companies in the business, which guarantees that users will have a desktop-like experience.
Speaking of desktops, there were times when people did not have access to smartphones and tablets. After the internet became widespread, gamblers only had access to computers. Hence, some of the oldest and most reputable betting companies have fully-functioning desktop sites.
Although some people use their computers for iGaming today, these devices are not that popular because bettors rarely have free time. That’s why smartphones and tablets have taken over the betting industry.
Even though these devices are popular now, this might change in the future. The tech is getting better every year, so it is a matter of time before we have access to other devices that can be used for online betting. Let’s check some of the potential options.
Even though some people have smart TVs at home, those gadgets are not that popular yet, especially in some parts of the world. The concept of a smart TV allows you to access the internet without using a computer. Your TV has a specific operating system with its app store and various other things.
Most smart TVs run on Android, but some brands create their own OS. That’s the reason why only a few people have the option to place bets using these devices.
Once intelligent TVs become more popular, most gambling websites will try to optimize their apps to run on larger screens. For now, gamblers who want to put their TV to the test will have to open their browser and go to the bookie/casino’s site.
Another problem when using a smart TV for betting is the controls. Sadly, this tech is not that advanced yet, which means we usually need a remote to maneuver. Placing bets using a remote control is not ideal, especially if you are eyeing live betting.
Smartwatches are getting more popular by the day, thanks to brands like Apple and Google. Millions of people use them to make phone calls, read messages, and more. Some smartwatch users also go to the best site to download and install mobile apps on their devices because they are interested in online betting. Consequently, these people will be more than happy if they have the chance to place bets using their smartwatches.
All sorts of things can be used to optimize smartwatches for mobile betting and casino games. Besides using them to wager on something, the software developers may allow people to receive different notifications. For example, they can check when their bet is settled.
Sadly, the smaller screen size can be problematic because punters won’t be able to keep track of many things.
Like everything else, cars are getting more advanced every year. Nowadays, almost every top-rated car manufacturer focuses on electric vehicles. The latter is much closer to a smartphone than an actual car because it uses batteries instead of an engine and a gearbox.
The newest cars always feature the latest technology in terms of their infotainment system, making them ideal for online betting. The fact that some vehicles offer Wi-Fi hotspots allows people to access the internet while being on the go. Consequently, they can use the car’s infotainment system to access their favorite gambling website.
Of course, gambling while driving is impossible, which means that online casinos and bookmakers have to figure a way to prevent the driver from accessing their app/mobile site.
VR technology became popular a couple of years ago. After the arrival of the first VR headsets, people were amazed that they had the chance to play games as if they were in the game itself.
Sadly, the technology supporting VR’s potential was not advanced enough. Hence, those things were not convenient to use for online betting. That’s why online casinos and bookmakers were more interested in developing apps for smartphones and tablets.
Fortunately, computing technology gets better every year, which means that we can finally utilize the VR tech, at least up to a point. Aside from the short clips and different VR games, we expect top-tier betting companies to eventually allow people to use a VR casino or a sportsbook. We can only imagine the features and options punters will have access to.
Last but not least, we have the Metaverse, something that has been popular lately, mainly thanks to people like Mark Zuckerberg. Although the Metaverse is technically not a device, we’ve decided to include it here because it will most likely play a vital role in iGaming’s future.
There are a couple of Metaverse projects today where people can create a digital avatar and interact with other people interested in this tech. There are even things like digital real estate companies that sell properties in the Metaverse. It is just a matter of time before we see the first big casinos and bookmakers.
Although loads of new companies will try to accept as many players from the Metaverse as possible, some of the old-school brands will also want a piece of the pie. Consequently, we expect to see various options that people can choose from. There might be new sections that are not available to those who use mobile apps for betting on their smartphones and tablets.