Internet Gambling is the act of placing bets and wagers on the internet. This includes sports betting, casinos, and virtual poker. It has become the fastest growing mode of gambling.
The United States has enacted several statutes that make it illegal to use the internet for unlawful gambling. These statutes include the Wire Act, the Illegal Gambling Business Act, and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) provisions. There are also many state laws that prohibit illegal gambling.
Unlike telephone gambling, the Internet offers a largely automated process for gambling. High-speed connections allow for rapid bets. However, the Internet has the potential to encourage excessive use. In fact, some researchers have suggested that a high-speed Internet connection may result in an increased rate of disordered gambling.
Many of the UIGEA’s proscriptions are designed to keep out low-level gambling cases. One of the factors that is used to identify illegal Internet bets is the presence of an interstate element. Since a number of state officials have expressed concern that the internet can be used to bring illegal gambling into their jurisdictions, the federal law reinforces these laws in the cases.
Another important feature of the UIGEA is the prohibition against financial transactions for illegal Internet bets. It is a violation of the Federal Wire Act to transmit bets on the Internet that are not authorized. Moreover, the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act (FIRA) makes it illegal to accept financial instruments for illegal Internet bets.