Published on June 8, 2015 in Industry News

US FlagAt the recent East Coast Gaming Congress in Atlantic City a panel of gambling and legislation experts declared that despite self-serving billionaires, concerns over the ability to legislate and current difficulties with processing online deposits the future of online gambling in the USA is a bright one.

Director of the New Jersey Division for Gaming Enforcement, David Rebuck, claimed that one of the major hindrances to the fruition of a stable legislation, and an informed public, is land casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson.

Adelson has publically stated that he will "spend whatever it costs to stop Internet gambling", yet there seems to be no other reason for this other than to protect his land based casino operations from competition.

In this case Adelson has assumed the role of 'school-yard bully', with no real value being added to the conversation other than to, as New Jersey Senator, Ray Lesniak commented; "...scare the bejeezus out of legislators".

Notwithstanding the success seen in the United Kingdom, who has a robust taxation and legislative system for managing online gambling, the US has been plagued with concerns over their government’s ability to effectively regulate online gambling. 

These concerns have been centred on issues such as underage gambling, concerns over debt due to compulsive gambling and the influence of crime syndicates on US online casinos. However the current success in Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware (the three states that have legalised online gambling to date) is allaying these fears.

While the revenue figures have not seen the heights initially projected they have managed to implement viable security measures to address many of the concerns. David Rebuck stood firm that the measures put in place to protect the public are of such a high standard that other States will be encouraged to legislate their respective regions.

This position is strongly supported by the fact that additional US states such Pennsylvania, New York and California are openly investigating the viability of legal online gambling for themselves.

Recent improvements in the processing of online gambling deposits via credit card are also having a direct impact on the appetite of additional states to pursue online gambling as a revenue source.

Confusion over how to distinguish between 'illegally' made online casino deposits, and those now being made on accounts sitting within legal states led to truly flaccid deposit levels. The initial reviews showed that VISA approval rates sat within the 18%-22% band. 

However this issue has been addressed by introducing a new set of transaction codes aimed at accurately identifying transactions being made in legal states via licenced gambling businesses. The initial reports show that these transactions have a much improved success rate of up to 50%!

The impact of doubling acceptance rates could see a state such as New Jersey who generated $122 million in 2014 show returns of $300 million or more as existing customers are able to transact more, and growing consumer confidence leads to a marked increase in new customers.

While the initial pioneers of online gambling in the US have faced considerable challenges and resistance the industry is proving to be one the people want. As consumers become more informed, legislation improves and processing stabilises there is no doubt that a future where all men and women are free to gamble online safely and securely in the US is close at hand.