Various forms of online gambling are legal in most countries of the European Union and the Caribbean. In the United States, some forms of online gambling are illegal.
Online gambling refers to any activity in which people bet on the outcome of events or games of chance. This can include gambling in casinos, sportsbooks, and virtual poker. It can also include betting on horse racing markets.
Online gambling was first introduced in the late 1990s. Around fifteen websites were in existence at the time. In 1999, multiplayer online gambling was introduced. A Frost & Sullivan report showed that online gambling revenues grew to $830 million in 1998.
In 2007, Representative Barney Frank introduced HR 2046, also known as the Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection, and Enforcement Act. The bill requires that Internet gambling facilities be licensed by the director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. The law also bans advertising that facilitates illegal gambling.
The owner of the Seals with Clubs bitcoin poker site was sentenced to two years probation and a $25,000 fine. The case was the first US prosecution of a gambling website that uses cryptocurrency. The owner argued that cryptocurrencies are a form of social gambling and that the federal government does not recognize them as currency.
In April 2007, Representative Barney Frank introduced the Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection, & Enforcement Act, also known as HR 2046. The bill would amend the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA). The bill would also require that online gambling facilities be licensed by the director of the financial crimes enforcement network.