Internet gambling represents one of the fastest growing segments of online activities with hundreds of websites providing users the opportunity to place bets on anything, ranging from casino games to sporting events. Billions of dollars in bets are placed each day in online gambling.
The gambling industry is estimated to gross around $40 billion a year. Majority goes to the government in some form or another and one of the reasons people are starting to look toward the Internet is the fact that the companies can be based offshore and be free of taxes. The government can try to prosecute but the chances of them getting a conviction is highly unlikely, especially if they're a foreign citizen. They can only seize their assets if they enter the United States. Many companies are looking for ways to go around the laws. For example, in football, if they can get two people to bet on opposing sides, then they are technically not gambling. The companies would only take 2.5% of the action. They would act as a middle man of sorts. On the security side, one company has started making personal card readers that they send to your house and you hook it up to your computer.
Many people still fear gambling on the Internet because of safety issues. They fear a hacker might break in and just keep letting himself win. Companies fear the Internet because they might come in too late and saturate the market with Internet gambling companies. It could become the same thing as what happened to Atlantic City. The companies that run the gambling can also cheat by writing in the programs to deal more 21's to the house. The government’s biggest fear is that the technology has outgrown the regulations. There are 15 Internet gambling sites in New Jersey. Casinos licensed to operate the sites are the Borgata; Caesars Atlantic City; Bally’s Atlantic City; Golden Nugget Atlantic City; Tropicana; Trump Plaza; and the Trump Taj Mahal, which has a partnership with Station Casinos-owned Ultimate Gaming.
Some of the other new ways that companies are going to try to use the Internet are through interactive TV. Home viewers can bet on live horse races through an interactive cable system that will be monitored by their computers. Their remote control can do it all. People won’t even have to get up. Many experts fear that this may cause young people to become…