As officials and regulatory bodies in several countries of Europe are starting to apply greater effort to make online casino businesses step out of the shade, operate more transparently, minimize the accessibility of their services to under-age players, and advertise themselves in accordance with legislation, Bitcoin may partially lose its ‘almightiness’ and universality as a virtual payment method supported by many casino portals and increasingly preferred by Internet gamblers. That is the way events may progress in the United Kingdom, a country actually known for its relatively lenient stance on casino gaming. The question of Bitcoin gambling legality has been largely discussed in the UK lately, and that’s for a good reason.
The country’s Gambling Commission (UKGC), the official regulatory body dealing with gambling in all of its aspects, sent out a strong signal to Internet casino gaming operators calling them to bring their activity in line with the UK’s legislation and made it clear they will be unable to run their businesses further without having obtained corresponding licenses, irrespective of the type of currency they conduct transactions in. As stated by the current UKGC head Jenny Williams, the officials are aware of certain operators illegally advertising/offering their services to customers.
In 2013, there was a chance for the cryptocurrency to retain its status of an unregulated commodity in the UK, as the ministers found it rational to free Bitcoin companies from obtaining licenses to operate and comply with existing regulations, and virtual Bitcoin casinos in the UK and betting portals were no exception. Several months ago, however, the government rethought their policy and came up with decision to introduce regulation of Bitcoin exchanges in order to possibly limit them being used unlawfully, including for money washing purposes.
Online gambling industry has been emerging steadily for over two decades already, since the very moment it was successfully capitalized with a view to make it profitable. As of now, electronic casino gaming can boast a set of strong advantages over ‘regular’ gambling, and among the first things making it so popular is greater cost-effectiveness, handiness, flexibility, ease of access, and other crucial aspects. Nevertheless, it has been capable to take up only 10 per cent of the overall market, not least since old-school casino businesses seem to have a very strong lobby among politicians. Tycoons and owners of gigantic brick-and-mortar casino empires like the somewhat notorious 81 year-old US billionaire Sheldon Adelson (a holder of a jaw-dropping $30 billion fortune and the chair of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, a parent enterprise to a group of sub-companies offering gambling services) have literally declared a war on Internet casino gaming, just to fight off the unwished yet more progressive competition.
Still, Bitcoin gambling is nowadays recognized as very viable and having great potential. Bitcoin casino games are enormously popular among virtual gamblers all over the world, not least because the cryptocurrency is capable to provide its users with the unexcelled level of payment anonymity and make their transactions eye-blinkingly fast. BTC may easily be the monetary future of many markets and industries, just as soon as it overgrows the online gambling clothes.