Understanding ‘iGaming’ and the scope of online gambling industry

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iGaming, short for “interactive gaming,” commonly refers to the online gambling industry, which involves various forms of betting and gambling activities conducted over the internet. It encompasses a wide range of online games and wagering options, including casino games (such as slots, blackjack, roulette, and poker), sports betting, bingo, lottery, and more.

The industry although in existence since the 1990s when internet was first introduced it grew at fast pace in recent years due to Covid19 induced boredom.

iGaming has gained significant popularity in recent years due to advancements in technology, increased internet accessibility, the availability of cheap smartphones, and the wide marketing by the igaming entities.  These portals allow individuals to engage in gambling activities conveniently from their computers, smartphones, or other internet-enabled devices, without the need to visit a physical casino or betting establishment.

The iGaming industry is regulated in many countries and jurisdictions to ensure fair play, player protection, and responsible gambling practices. But in majority of developing nations including India, iGaming is illegal. 

Licensed online casinos and betting operators provide a secure and regulated environment for users to participate in various games and place bets. These platforms often offer attractive bonuses, promotions, and a wide selection of gaming options to attract and retain players.

But in recent times, several iGaming entities have started offering services beyond the licensed jurisdiction violating the laws of countries where users are based. For example, several iGaming portals licensed in remote carribbean nations operate in India although it is illegal to accept bets under Indian laws. Such offshore portals doesn’t guarantee of user safety, fund transfer on winnings. 

Overall, despite drawbacks, iGaming has transformed the traditional gambling landscape by providing a convenient and accessible platform for individuals to enjoy betting and gaming entertainment from the comfort of their homes or on the go.

But where these portals are registered in remote countries and doesn’t have physical presence in the user countries, the portals have been accused of identity thefts to operate bank accounts, money laundering, and other violations of local laws. When indulging in gambling through offshore iGaming portals, users may not have any recourse in case of consumer disputes.