Online Casino BTDino

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Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Online casino hackers

One of the aims of the UK gambling bill, currently facing a race to be passed before the election, is to bring online operators on shore, where they can be more closely regulated. Bhargava is rigidly non-committal about the merits of the bill: he sees the advantage of being recognised as a proper industry in a G7 country but is making no promises. He does, though, make one important admission. "We pay very little tax in Gibraltar but would tax prevent us coming on shore? No. Taxes are not driving the issue. Regulation is something that would play a far more important role."

A further worry in the investment community is that online gambling sites might be unwitting participants in money laundering. After all, billions of dollars are being waged in cyberspace. Bhargava argues that rigorous checks are made but that the basic impracticality of laundering money this way should also reassure outsiders and regulators; so, too, that PartyGaming uses respectable international institutions for its banking.

"People keep talking about it, therefore we look at it," he says. "But ask yourself whether it is really possible to launder money this way. Look at what the average value is for deposits. It is very small. What's the maximum? It's not too large. If you send a wire for $50,000 or £50,000, we would not accept it because you do not need $50,000 to play poker.

"People need a $50, $100, $150 deposit to play; $500 can last a player a long time. So would it really be an efficient way of laundering money? Probably not. There must be easier ways than making lots of micro-transactions."