So, you’ve worked your way through a list of the more well-known casinos, and you now find yourself in the position of looking at what else is out there.
Most online casinos do a great job of looking the part, but when you are investing your hard-earned money it is well worth making an effort to carry out a few checks to ensure that you are not giving your details to a casino which is operated out of a bedroom in the backstreets of Kazakhstan!
It is easy to think that it is not worth taking making the small amount of effort to carry out these checks, but we guarantee you’ll be feeling differently if you have a tremendous win and your attempts to make a withdrawal prove unsuccessful.
It should be mentioned that the vast majority of online casinos are above board, but all it takes is one dodgy experience to leave a sour taste in the mouth and put you off from getting involved in what can be an extremely lucrative opportunity.
Easy checks to make
If you think that these checks will involve a lot of work and an in-depth seated technical ability, don’t worry, these checks are simple to carry out, and once you have gone through them a couple of times, they won’t take any longer than a few minutes.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at each check individually.
Domain name checking
If you are not familiar with what a domain name is, it is just the name of a website, for instance, this website you are on is www.gamblescope.com
Anyone can register a domain name. You may be surprised to learn that they can be registered for significantly less than the cost of a steak dinner. It is not difficult to look up a domain name which is available, register it, pay someone a few hundred pounds to set up a website, and away we go.
Luckily, there are checks that you can make with regards to a domain name to make sure that it has been registered by a company who are in a position to run an online casino.
The type of check to carry out on a domain name is a WHOIS (pronounced Who Is), and this will give you lots of details such as when the domain name was registered, how long it has been designated, and who owns it.
There is no charge to carry out a WHOIS check, and a simple Google search will present you with multiple websites where you will be able to conduct the search.
The following website is as good as any and it exceptionally easy to use.
It is just a matter of entering a domain into the search box, and it takes only a few seconds to reveal all of the information that you will need. Armed with the facts, you can then cross reference with the info provided on the casino’s website.
Red flags could be that the website may state that they have been established for many years, but the domain name was only registered six months ago.
The website could also state that the operation is based in the UK, but the owner of the domain name is an individual from Russia!
It is all basic stuff really, and you don’t need to be Inspector Clouseau to be able to figure it out.
Website traffic checking
It stands to reason that a reputable online casino will attract massive amounts of traffic resulting in many gamers signing up to play there.
An online scam casino which has just been set up to extract money out of unsuspecting customers will not be getting much traffic over an extended period for the simple reason that it will more than likely have been shut down due to large numbers of complaints.
There is a simple method to find out how much traffic an online casino gets and that is by using websites such as Alexa.com
Simple go to the following website: www.alexa.com/siteinfo/
Ignore all options which ask you to subscribe to a particular service, enter the name of the online casino into the search box and click on the ‘Find’ button.
You will be presented with a simple to read graph which indicates the amount of traffic the website is getting along with a global and specific country ranking which is shown by a number.(the lower the number, the more traffic a website is getting). You will see from these indicators how popular a website is and if it confirms the claims which are made by the casino operator.
Typical red flags when carrying out searches of this nature are incredibly high number figures, a graph which shows very little traffic or a statement at the top of the results page which says, ‘We don't have enough data to rank this website.’
Another great tool which you can use to find out the backdated status of a website is the Way Back Machine which can be found at the following link: http://web.archive.org
This free service allows you to enter the name of a website and you will be presented with a calendar which covers the years that the site has been active.
Some dates in the calendar are highlighted, and if you click on any of these, you will be taken to the earlier version of the website that was available on that particular date.
The obvious things to look for are if the same business existed on the dates you are checking.
An online casino which boasts of being established for ten years should be visible if you click on a date nine years ago on the Way Back Machine.
If it’s not, this could be another warning sign that the casino may be exaggerating and may not be all that they are claiming to be.
Customer service checking
When you discover an online casino that you are not familiar with it is always worth contacting their customer services to ask them a couple of fundamental questions.
You can learn an awful lot by the kind of response that you get when asking these questions.
If you don’t even get a reply, the customer service agent is rude, or it is apparent that they don’t know what they are talking about, is this somewhere where you really want to give your card details and spend your money.
You may also find that some online casinos don’t have a telephone number or that the contact email address is entirely unrelated to the business name, BrightLightsCasino@hotmail.com being a fictitious example but if you come across anything like that, you would be well advised to give it a wide berth.
Gambling authority checking
Depending on which jurisdiction the online casino is operating in, you will see links at the bottom of a casino which advertise the gambling authorities that has licensed the casino.
A scam casino will not think twice about including the logos of the various authorities on their homepage as these logos will add credibility to their operation.
All it takes is for you to check with the stated Gambling Authorities that the casino is registered with them.
The registered casinos are usually displayed on the Authorities website, but if they are not, it is yet another warning sign.
10 Minute Online Strategy for peace of mind
You should have a simple strategy in place to check these online casinos which will take you less than ten minutes. With this in mind, here is a simple approach which you can use.
Carry out a domain name check to find out when the domain name was registered and who owns it.
Check out the traffic stats on Alexa.com to find out if the website is getting any traffic.
Check out the Way Back Machine to see if the site was available within the period since it claims to be established since.
Contact customer services (providing they have a proper email address) and take note of their response and how long it takes.
Check that they are registered with the licensing authorities they claim.
Keep it Fun, Keep it Safe
The vast majority of online casinos are incredibly reputable but don’t let that fact make you drop your guard when it comes to carrying out these simple checks.
Basic online casino checks will only take you a few minutes to carry out, and your online casino experience will be much more enjoyable when you have peace of mind about the casino you are using. Always play safe in the knowledge that your personal details will be secure and when you come to make a withdrawal, you should have no problems.