Online gambling is a form of wagering using electronic devices. It includes online casinos, sports betting sites, esports betting platforms and lottery-type games such as keno and scratch cards. Online gamblers typically access these sites via smartphones, PCs or laptops. While many people enjoy online gambling, it can be a risky activity if done excessively. It is important to know the signs of addiction to ensure you are safe when gambling online.
Unlike brick-and-mortar casinos, which require you to travel to them to gamble, online gambling allows you to place a bet at any time of the day or night. This flexibility makes it more difficult to monitor and regulate online gambling activities, which increases the likelihood of problematic behavior. It also means that online gambling can go undetected, making it harder for friends and family to recognize problem behaviors.
The majority of online gamblers use a smartphone to access their gambling websites, but tablets and laptops are also common devices used for this activity. The number of online gambling accounts held by people has remained stable since 2010, with an average of 3.2 accounts per person in 2020. This is a slight decrease from the previous year, but it is likely due to a combination of factors, including the impact of recent lockdowns on online gambling activity.
To protect yourself from online gambling fraud, always check your account statements and report any suspicious transactions immediately. Consider changing your passwords and enabling two-factor authentication on your online banking or gambling accounts to improve security. Also, refrain from sharing credit or debit cards with a partner who has a gambling problem. This will prevent them from wasting money on gambling-related purchases or running up debts in your name.