Online Betting Scams
The advent of the internet has made online sports wagering available to almost every person in the world. Sports betting websites accept wagers from thousands of miles away, and allow bettors to bet on events across the globe. When a bettor deposits into an online sportsbook, he reads the terms and conditions and expects to be paid if he places a winning wager.
However, this is not always how it works out. While most online sports bookies and operators are honest and trustworthy, some are not. Every industry has its rotten apples, and the online gaming market is no different.
Safe And Reputable Betting Sites
Why Steal From Players?
Sportsbooks that are scamming or defrauding player aren’t always out to scam bettors from the inception of their operation. Many of these scam sportsbooks, are simply broke or “operating on the float”, which means they are using new player deposits to pay old debts. Management of these books may have run a profitable business at one time, but now have fallen on hard times.
Other online bookmakers are established for the sole purpose of stealing from bettors. These operators have no intention of paying anyone who wins or asks for a withdrawal of their original deposit. They are no different from a common thief.
Still, whether bettors are dealing with a gang of thieves or broke businessmen, the outcome is the same – they are out money.
Email and Phone Marketing
Operators of dubious sports gambling operations will go the extra mile to get bettors to deposit into their books. This includes bulk email mailings and in some cases harassing phone calls customers. All of the company representatives that contact potential gamblers are just trying to get them to make a deposit, and will guarantee almost anything to get them to do so.
The calls are unsolicited, unprofessional, and not the way a legitimate online wagering site does business. These bookmakers make thousands of calls, and send millions of emails looking for suckers to deposit. Don’t fall for their tactics.
Looking the Part
For a scam sportsbook to con a customer, they have to look and feel like a legitimate betting operation. Lots of scam outfits have extremely professional sites, tons of betting options, and an accessible wagering menu. They will even offer special promotions, an online casino and poker room, and many other features. They even go as far as to offer support via live chat to potential customers, feeding them lies to get them to deposit. The old saying rings true for online gambling sites, “you can’t judge a book by its cover.”
Not Honoring Bets
Rogue betting sites write their own rules, and will often change their own terms and conditions retroactively after a wager is placed. They may promote certain wagers that are different from market value to increase betting action at the book. Of course, they have no intention of honoring the wagers if they should win. When these wagers win, the book will argue that there was a line error, which in the vast majority of cases isn’t true. It’s just another scam to fleece players of their money.
Scam betting websites will void wagers for a number of reasons, and in many cases will provide no evidence to support their claim. Players who beat them out for a lot of money will sometimes be accused of being part of a betting syndicate, and the book will void winnings on the grounds that they are professional bettors. These scam operations will find any reason to invalidate winnings.
When a bettor is referred to a sportsbook by another website or gambling affiliate, the sportsbook will pay the affiliate a percentage of the player’s losses. Many betting scams still pay their affiliate, and stiff their players. In fact, some of the biggest scam sportsbooks actually have the most lucrative affiliate programs. These books can afford to pay affiliates more, because they aren’t paying their customers!
Are the affiliates complicit in the scam? Not technically, but without the affiliates promoting the scam sportsbooks, they would have significantly less business. So, essentially, these affiliates are keeping these scam operations from going broke.
Many affiliates write reviews praising scamming bookmakers, endorsing them as wonderful sportsbooks that are highly trusted. Of course, they know this isn’t true, and are just as greedy as the sites scamming players out of their money.
In most countries, sportsbooks are required to operate with a license and to be regulated by a gaming body. Most of these scam sportsbooks will be given these licenses in the beginning, but will shortly get their licenses revoked after the governing body discovers their thieving business practices.
However, the rogue sportsbooks will often refuse to remove the seal of approval from their site. In some cases, they’ll even make up regulatory bodies and give themselves a A+ sportsbook status.
The kickoff of the NFL season sees a sizeable jump in deposits into online sportsbooks. New sportsbooks will often appear just before the season starts, and some of them may be scam outfits. Because so many bettors are depositing online, it’s easy for some of them to fall through the cracks and end up depositing in a less than reputable sportsbook.
Choose Your Sportsbooks Wisely
Even experienced bettors have been scammed by a rogue sportsbook, especially with everything that has happened to the industry over the past few years. It’s absolutely crucial to research your prospective sportsbook before depositing, use multiple sources and read what other bettors have said in forums. Just a few minutes searching Google can save bettors a lot of money and heartache down the line. Keep an eye on the scam reports offered by SBR as well, just keep in mind that site seems to pick and choose their battles based on who writes them the largest checks. Avoid all sites on this blacklistand use good judgement in where you choose to play at, remember that if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Like this article on facebook or share it with your friends to help others avoid problems with rogue gambling sites and shady operators.