Top tips for picking an online gaming site

bymaorixonflickr2Not all online poker sites are created equal. There is a huge gap between those and the top and those at the bottom with dozens treading water in the middle. The best sites offer lucrative incentives, attractive rewards, a safe and secure playing environment and piece of mind. The worst are not even real poker sites; they are merely fronts or frauds for scheming money from unsuspecting amateur gamblers.

If you are new to scene and want to save time, hassle, money and possibly financial ruin, here are few things you need to look for in every online poker site.

License and registration

Every online casino needs to be licensed and registered in a ‘real’ world location. The UK does not issue gambling licenses; most online poker sites offering play in the UK are actually licensed, registered and regulated in one of three places: the Channel Islands, Malta or Gibraltar. Sky Poker offers online poker to UK residents but it is licensed and regulated in the Channel Islands by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission.

Gaming software

To ensure play is fair and completely random and to fight cheats and card counters the best online casinos use highly sophisticated Random Number Generators (RNG). Running as software programmes, packages from developers such as Microgaming, make sure cards are dealt at random. In many cases this technology is even more sophisticated than that found in ‘real’ world casinos.

Security software

Online payments don’t need to be risky so long as the site uses specially designed security software encryption programmes. Thawte and VeriSign are two of the biggest names in this high-tech encryption market. They use what’s known as Secure Sockets Layer, the same technology used by banks, to protect a user’s payment details.

Another layer of protection is offered by Visa and MasterCard as these card companies are enrolled in online encryption schemes to validate a user’s identity via password.


Aside from the security side of banking, online casinos also need to ensure financial transactions are dealt with quickly and effectively. Your deposit should be credited to your online casino account instantly and it should take no more than seven days for you to receive your winnings after you request a withdrawal.

You can find out more about the UK gambling industry on Gamble Aware.

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