It is vital that any player, no matter how often they gamble or how much they put at stake, always does so through a recognised, trusted and licensed casino. Direct reviews of websites are a very compelling source of information in regards to which sites are the safest, but if a site is unlicensed or happens to be breaking a law, there is no way you should put a penny of your money into that company.
The internet is awash with scams just looking to capitalize on vulnerable people desperate to make a quick buck. The infamous scams where people receive an email telling them they have won a lottery draw abroad are, thankfully, now so well-known they are laughable, but for every rookie attempt there is a novice of crime just around the corner.
Even with established sites, there are still a multitude of things that can go wrong if procedure is not correctly followed. Full Tilt Poker was one of the leading poker companies in the world just a few years ago. Almost overnight, the company’s prospects crashed and burned as it was brought to the attention of the American public that the company had been operating illegally and were actually banned from allowing US players to participate in the way they had been for years. This hit the players more than anyone; funds were frozen, leaving some people out of pocket by 5- or even 6-figures, and there was uproar as the case dragged on for years. Poker prop and then-Full Tilt ambassador Phil Ivey even threatened not to enter the World Series of Poker, the largest tournament of the year, in disgust at the treatment of Full Tilt’s customers, before eventually relenting. Nowadays, the company has been taken over by the parent company of rival PokerStars and all customers were (eventually) refunded. This serves as a stark warning, however, to always keep your wits about you and only dabble in legal gambling online – much as you would do in real life.