Online Slot Machines—Better Than the Real Thing?  

Online slots offer players the best of two worlds: the excitement of a gambling casino in the privacy of their own home. Players can log on anytime, play as long as they can afford to, and play online machines from Aruba to Scotland and anywhere in between. The popularity of online gambling has made this a multi-billion dollar industry in a few short years.

But can you trust an online slot machine not to cheat? Can you trust the people who run these operations not to steal your credit card numbers? Moreover, do online gambling sites contribute to the woes of people with a gambling addiction? Opinions are mixed.

While individual states can and do license online gambling operations, many operations are run overseas where the United State’s federal and states authorities have no jurisdiction. Many are located in England or the Caribbean. Experts who study online casinos suggest that players select online casinos that post the payout rate and offer multiple games to choose from. These online operations are typically more honest than those that don’t post payouts and have few games from which to choose.

For the most part, experts agree that most online casinos operate fairly, with the same sort of Random Number Generator software that slot machines in brick and mortar casinos use. Many offer substantial bonuses for first-time depositors. However, because some states, like Maryland and Washington, have outlawed online gambling, players have no legal recourse if an online casino cheats them.

As for online slot machines and their effect on people with gambling additions, most agree that the temptation people experience to spend beyond their means is greater when they gamble in private. Lawmakers have yet to find a solution to that problem.