Guide to Avoiding the Worst Casinos
It's hardly a secret that the online gambling industry has a checkered past. You don't have to search far to find everything from minor player grievances to outright horror stories at internet casinos. While many casinos deserve your trust, there are plenty of unscrupulous sites that have given the industry a bad name over the years. The sad fact is there are few barriers to launching any sort of business on the Internet and that includes casinos.
When shopping online, you probably exercise caution so that you don't end up with counterfeit merchandise or have your personal information stolen. It's critical to be even more vigilant when choosing a gambling site. While we recommend reading reviews and ratings, it's just as important to consult a blacklist like this one. It's the quickest way to make sure you steer clear of the worst gambling sites.
Making the Blacklist
Online gambling sites appear on our blacklist for a variety of reasons. More importantly, the severity of infractions vary widely. Some might not seem like a big deal at first glance, but others will make anyone's jaw drop. Still, no matter how big or small the issues happen to be, we advise against throwing caution to the wind. There's no sense dealing with disappointment or compromising your security when excellent alternatives are only a click away.
Money matters are probably the most common concern among online gamblers. There are too many stories of players facing needless payment delays, but that's hardly the worst part. Some casinos may never pay out your winnings, especially if you win big. Many players have faced a litany of excuses and lies. Unfortunately, payment delays can be complicated. Some of the worst casinos accuse players of cheating or failing to satisfy arbitrary terms and conditions to avoid paying out winnings. In some cases, the offending gambling website faces its own financial troubles and can't afford to keep their part of the bargain. Whether or not conditions improve, this is beyond unacceptable.
With the exception of live dealer games, online casino titles are based on RNGs or random number generators. Without giving you a computer science lesson, these software algorithms ensure that every roll of the dice, spin of the wheel, and shuffle of the deck mirrors what would happen in real life with mathematical certainty. More importantly, RNGs are routinely certified and audited to ensure they operate as advertised. Unfortunately, sketchy sites lie about the randomness of their games and may not have them verified at all. Some sites are known for letting you win when you wager small amounts, but you'll lose as soon as you raise the stakes. Keep in mind that many players claim even fair games are fixed when faced with a losing streak. In reality, you need to be aware of the house edge as well as variance.
Problems with Gambling Licenses
As you probably know, Internet gambling sites are licensed and regulated by gambling commissions in the region where they operate. Unfortunately, some sites are licensed by questionable authorities that effectively do nothing. Over the years, we've even found a few sites operating with expired or revoked licenses. Some sites even have the gall to falsify their licenses.
False or Misleading Advertising
The Internet is home to plenty of scams and prospective gamblers are hardly immune. Sadly, some sketchy sites make all sorts of promises that they have no intention of keeping. Whether it's creating impossible bonus conditions, falsifying the odds, or failing to honor the size of their guaranteed jackpots, players deserve better. There's no excuse for tricking players.
Poor Customer Service
The level of service a casino offers might not seem like a big deal at first glance, yet it's the hallmark of a great site. Many gambling sites are located thousands of miles away. If you have a concern, you can't just walk down the hall to get help. The best sites offer around the clock support by phone, live chat, and email. Failing to answer phone calls or otherwise giving you the runaround is usually a bad omen. At minimum, you deserve to play with confidence and in comfort, knowing you can get assistance when you need it.
Scandal Plagued Sites
Calling certain gambling sites scandalous might seem like the epitome of exaggeration, but it's simply a sad fact. Nearly a decade ago, a couple poker sites, operating under the name Ultimate Bet and Absolute Poker, were mired in misconduct. Most notably, Absolute Poker was accused of giving some players the power to see all their opponents' cards. Any poker player can tell you this is a foolproof way to beat your competitors. Yet despite garnering media headlines and spots on blacklists like this one, these sites continued to thrive for several more years.
It's hard to fully understand why players believed the defense of these poker rooms and continued to trust them until the Feds eventually shut them down. While we're here to help you avoid playing at the next batch of offenders, you'll need to do your part by heeding the bright red flags.
Prism Casino promises a rainbow of pure pleasure, but in reality players have waited months to be paid. If you believe the customer comments on their Facebook page, the waiting game continues. ( www.prismscasino.com )
BTC lures players by accepting Bitcoin, but this unlicensed casino has left plenty of players hanging. Expect to face endless hurdles when it's time to cash out. (btc-casino.io)
Slots of Vegas not only lacks a license, but players have complained of habitually slow payouts measured in months even on small amounts. ( www.slotsofvegas.com)
Crazy Luck Casino looks dated, but that's hardly its biggest failing. The site is infamous for not responding to customers and failing to pay, but it formerly used a fake license. (www.crazyluckcasino.com)
The Virtual Casino has a lengthy history of failing to pay players. You are better off playing virtually anywhere else. (thevirtualcasino.com)
Casino Atlanta brags about being fully licensed yet they hold a business license rather than any recognized gaming credentials. In the past, the site also used pirated software. That's not only unethical, but chances are the games are rigged. (casino-atlanta.com)
Coolcat Casino is best known for offering phantom bonuses, which are effectively impossible to cash out. Even if you don't care about bonuses, expect the runaround when trying to withdraw your winnings. (www.coolcat-casino.com)
Palace of Change isn't worth the risk when you consider their long history of nonpayment. The site is also known for not honoring the terms of their bonuses, failing to hold a valid license, and offering poor customer service. (www.palaceofchance.com)
Grand Reef Casino has been accused of rigging its games in the past. Players have complained about winning when playing for free yet losing frequently when there's money on the line. While these claims are difficult to prove, why take the chance? (www.grandreefcasino.com)
There's no shortage of gambling blacklists on the Internet. While we encourage you to take advantage of as many resources as possible, it's important to be certain that you rely on current information. It's entirely possible that a formerly reputable casino has gone downhill. At the same time, it's possible for previously problematic site to make amends. Keep in mind that sites also undergo management and ownership changes that could tilt the balances one way or the other. That's why we update our blacklist regularly to reflect the current state of online gambling. We not only encourage you to bookmark this site to be in the loop, but we also encourage your input. Feel free to share your gaming experiences with us.
While a blacklist like this one might paint a bleak picture of the Internet gambling industry, there's no point losing sleep. Nightmares are the exception rather than the rule provided you pay attention to where you play. There are dozens of fully licensed gambling sites that have a history of offering fair games, paying promptly, and providing excellent customer service. You can start by browsing the expert reviews throughout our site.