Around 2014, many sportsbook sites started offering a new and exciting way to gamble in sports: Bitcoin. At the time, Bitcoin was a mere fledgling currency, but it had just seen a major bump during the holidays, and people were looking at it as the next big thing.
However, what started with a few choice betting sites offering a novel way to bet, quickly brought in a number of rogue fly-by-night Bitcoin betting operators who were looking to cash in on the latest fad and dupe people out of their money. The modus operandi of these websites was:
- Create a fake betting site that looked legitimate but where you had zero chance of winning
- Promise huge bonuses to lure in bettors who are just looking for a great deal
- Request undue personal information that would help them hack your Bitcoin wallet
- Clickbait you into giving them access to your desktop, your machine, and obviously all your passwords (ever heard of keyloggers?)
An easy way to identify such websites is that you will never find them in the lists of top BTC sports betting sites written by reputable sources. These guys do a thorough evaluation of the sites and help you avoid scams while also informing you about the best deals and bonuses out there.
However, if you are a skeptic or have found a website that you are just itching to go and bet on because of its great offers, we suggest you look at the following signs to check if the site is trustworthy.
Does the Site Have Only Bitcoin/Crypto Betting?
Traditional betting sites have to deal with the government and banks because they are dealing in normal currency apart from Bitcoin and crypto.
Typically these sites would have to follow KYC Norms and meet AML requirements. So if you find that a site accepts normal currency, it’s a sure sign that it’s a legitimate operator.
Does Their License Look Legitimate?
Many Bitcoin-only betting sites would proudly display a license to operate in order to make you feel secure about your money. However, look carefully.
If the license seems unduly complex and differently worded than the licenses that you can find on traditional sports betting sites, it might be a fraudulent one. You can look at the gaming licenses of top BTC sports betting sites and check if the site you are trying to bet on has a similar license or not.
Do They Use Secure Encryption for Your Bitcoin Payments?
High-end Bitcoin sportsbooks would have quality encryption standards and the logos of their security partners proudly displayed on their website. You can typically find these at the bottom of their home page.
If you find that the site does not use high-end encryption techniques to keep your Bitcoin secure, our advice is to run away from it as far as you can. You might end up losing not just the money that you are betting but the entire Bitcoin that you have.
It is usually easy to figure out if the Bitcoin betting site is well known in betting circles. Here are some things to check:
- The site will have several good customer reviews online.
- It would be operating for a long time.
- It would have a strong customer support team that responds to any request 24×7 through email, chat, and phone, especially for Bitcoin withdrawals.
- Would have clearly registered addresses, email ids, phone numbers, and other details that are verifiable
Fly-by-night operators are short on funds. They can’t afford customer care executives or offices to rent out.
How Well Do They Resolve Their Public Disputes? Do They Use ADRs?
How a betting site resolves public disputes is a litmus test of its authenticity. Any reputed betting site would not let their name be dragged in the mud by genuine bettors pointing them out on social media.
Check if they respond to customer grievances on social media. If a bettor says he was scammed by them, do they reply back? Typically, a genuine Bitcoin sports betting site might use 3rd party Alternate Dispute Resolution organizations to address such issues. These guys are experts at protecting the site’s reputation while also resolving customer grievances.
Do They Offer Fair Bitcoin Deposit and Withdrawal Policies?
Your Bitcoin withdrawal limits should be set fairly high ($100,000+ weekly). Check if the site is restricting you from collecting your winnings by setting an unnaturally low withdrawal limit. The last thing you want is to end up winning big but not being able to draw out your winnings.
Typical deposit fees would also be reasonable. If the deposit fees are more than, say, $25, then we would say that it’s a red flag, and the site is trying to scam you out of your hard-earned Bitcoin.
Is Bitcoin the Only Currency They Deal In?
You should stay away from Bitcoin-only websites that have come up very recently. This is a clear difference between gambling operators who want to champion cryptocurrency as a legitimate way to bet and scammers who want to rob you of your Bitcoin – they will not be interested in Ethereum or other cryptocurrencies.
Do They Have Resources for Bitcoin Beginners?
Bitcoin-based gambling is in its growing phase. Even though 50% of Bitcoin transactions are gambling-related, more and more people are using them as they stabilize and become a safer investment opportunity.
Recently, the number of gambling transactions through Bitcoin and crypto has risen from just 6% to 26%. That means a lot of newbies are out there who need help understanding the use of Bitcoin for gambling.
Genuine sites that are working with cryptocurrencies will have resources for Bitcoin beginners to explain the process of crypto betting and all the jargons involved. They would provide guides, tutorials, and even free material to spread the word since they want more people to adopt this wonderfully quick and easy way to enjoy betting. But scammers will have no such interest in developing resources for this work.
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