The Relationship Between Internet Gambling and Problem Gambling Behaviors

Online Gambling

Many jurisdictions are looking to regulate online gambling and a growing number are starting the process of legalizing this activity. The benefits of regulation include better consumer protection and increased tax revenue. Although the prevalence of internet gambling is still low, participation is growing quickly on regulated sites. Regulatory bodies are also starting to develop laws to ensure that online gambling is legal and fair.

To date, no comprehensive study has directly linked Internet gambling to problematic gambling behaviors. However, some studies have compared self-reports of internet users to gambling problems. Thus, there is a need for further research on the potential relationship between Internet gambling and problematic behaviour. It’s still important to understand that there are differences between high and low involvement gamblers, and that a single gambling index is not sufficient to determine whether a person is at risk of gambling problems.

While these studies are limited, they do indicate that internet gamblers are more likely to have mental health issues and to use drugs and alcohol. Problem gamblers were also more likely to report drinking and smoking, which may lead to increased risk of self-harm. Furthermore, illicit drug use was linked to gambling problems.

The legality of Internet gambling is an ongoing debate, and can vary from state to state. In the United States, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 limits banks from transacting with illegal gambling sites, but does not define what constitutes an illegal internet gambling site. Previously, it was believed that online gambling would be banned by the Federal Wire Act, but this law does not apply to online casinos, lottery sites, or poker sites.

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