We’ve put together a list of the most common misconceptions about online gambling and are setting the record straight for each one. But as you’ll see, not everything is black and white in the world of Net betting.
1. Online gambling isn’t random. – False. Online casinos use random number generators (RNGs) for all games. The RNGs are (usually) software programs that use mathematical formulas to regulate which card is dealt, where the ball drops for roulette, and where the wheel stops in slots. The number that causes a certain action has no relation to the number that came before it or the number that will come after it.
RNGs can be changed to alter the payout percentages in slots machines, but that’s up to the discretion of the casino.
2. I’ll lose my money if my computer freezes. – False. The casino servers will attempt to complete a bet even if you accidentally go offline. If they can, the outcome of the bet will be in your account when you log back on. If the servers are unable to complete the bet, they will credit back the money you wagered for that bet.
The worst that can happen is you’ll be back where you started when you placed that particular bet. Not ideal, perhaps, but better than losing your money.
3. The odds are better in the play for free area. – (Possibly) True. Some lower-end casino operators may manipulate their free-play games to allow more wins. The thought behind this is that players will move over to the real-money games thinking they will continue to win big.
Legitimate operators more than likely don’t do that, however. We asked MicroGaming about this, and they assured us that they use the same random number generator for both the free-play and real-money games, and that the odds are the same for all games.
4. Someone can steal my credit card info if I give it out over the Internet. – False (and true). It is technically possible for someone to steal your credit card information while you’re buying things online or depositing money at a casino. But, and that’s a big but, the chances of that happening are pretty slim.
The only way this can happen is if you’re using a low-security browser or submitting information to a non-secure site. But you shouldn’t be doing either of those things in the first place.
The best way to protect yourself and your credit card info is to upgrade your Internet browser to 128-bit encryption. That’s the maximum available for non-governmental agencies. Check your browser’s encryption level at Intuit.com.
You should also make sure you’re playing at a casino that uses the industry-standard 128-bit SSL (secure socket layer) encryption for all financial data. That information is usually in the casino’s FAQ or Banking sections.
5. I can actually win money gambling online. – True. It all depends on how you look at it. You can win money, but you might not make enough to retire on.
The reason why is because casinos always have an advantage over players. It’s called the house edge, and it’s how they make money. That edge varies from game to game and casino to casino, but it can range from less than a percent to several percent.
That said, lots of people make hundreds or even thousands dollars gambling online. And they have a lot of fun doing it, too. The best way to make the big bucks with a single play is at one of the many progressive jackpots out there.