Now that cryptocurrencies are gaining acceptance and more and more online and brick and mortar retailers are accepting them as a payment method for their goods and services, it is no surprise that sportsbooks have also joined the crypto wave. But the question is - is it legal for USA sportsbooks to accept cryptocurrencies? Most European and Asian countries have specific regulations for crypto betting sites, but what about the USA?
Cryptos are not just a trend. Since the Genesis Block (Bitcoin’s first block) was mined back in 2009, the crypto industry has undergone numerous changes. Cryptocurrencies are no longer something only geeks are interested in. Well-known firms, including banks, online retailers and even travel agencies are involved in a way or another in the crypto sphere, either working on the development of their own tokens or accepting exiting cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin or Ethereum.
Why did sportsbooks start to accept cryptocurrencies?
Before the emergence of cryptos, punters had only one way of betting: they had to provide their bank account or debit/credit card details in order to fund their bet accounts. As a result, this sensible data was shared with third parties responsible for processing transactions, meaning that bad actors could eventually have access to them. However, cryptos changed the whole scenario, since in order to make a crypto transaction the only information that must be shared between the issuer and the receiver is the public address. No one, even hackers, can do anything with these publics addresses, which is one of the reasons why sportsbooks adopted this payment method.
On top of that, cryptocurrencies also offer some other advantages, being speed one of them. While traditional transactions involving fiat money usually take days to complete, crypto transactions are almost instant. As a result, the deposit and withdrawal process happen in a flash, something that users appreciate.
In addition, while online gambling was not illegal per se in the USA, banks and other financial services were banned from processing transactions between US gamblers and sites, which made gambling sites look for alternatives to avoid these restrictions. Cryptocurrencies emerged as the perfect solution thanks to their decentralized nature.
However, more and more states are updating their legislation in terms of online gambling, resulting in an increasing number of states in which online gambling is now legal. In order to make sure this new legislation is properly implemented, regulators are issuing gaming and betting licenses to those operators that meet some strict requirements. As a result, on the one hand we have illegal sportsbooks that still operate beyond the law and which represent a clear risk for users, and on the other hand we have fully licensed and authorized sportsbooks.
What should you do before betting?
If you have decided to use your cryptocurrencies to bet, there is no doubt that there are a lot of sites that allow their clients to do so. However, as we have already mentioned, some of them are licensed, while others are not. Before transferring your assets to an unknown site, you had better do some research and make sure it is reliable. How can you find out? Very easily. There are a couple of things you have to check:
- Does the site have a good reputation?
- Does it implement any security measures such as SSL encryption?
The best way to find sites in the States where you can legally bet is by accessing the OLBG site. It only features the most trusted sportsbooks sites, which implement the required security protocols and are fully licensed and authorized by the states in which they operate.
Even though the number of sportsbooks that accept Bitcoin or other cryptos is still limited, their number is continuously working. As a result, finding a site you can trust is now essential. OLBG only lists those sites that meet some strict requirements, so you can trust all recommended platforms are legal and fully authorized. Punters will not face any problems having their winnings paid, and they can be sure all platforms listed on OLBG meet the highest regulatory and security standards.