Online Gambling is the act of betting, placing bets, or receiving bets through the Internet. It includes sports betting, casinos, and virtual poker. Some states have made some forms of online gambling legal, while others have not.
Online gambling became popular in the late 1990s. In 1997, more than 200 gambling websites were open. However, state officials have expressed concern that the Internet could be used to facilitate illegal gambling in their jurisdictions.
The federal government has imposed penalties on gambling sites that violate federal laws. Owners of illegal gambling businesses can be fined or imprisoned. These penalties range from a fine to five years imprisonment.
Under the UIGEA, operators of an online gambling service must have a license. A license allows an online gambling site to advertise its services and conduct financial transactions. There are also appropriate data security standards and age verification.
If a website does not have a license, it can be blocked by the Federal Information Technology Rules. Illegal gambling can also be prosecuted under the Wire Act.
There are other statutes involved in the enforcement of Internet gambling. Section 1956 of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, or UIGEA, imposes several distinct crimes. This statute is also subject to attack on constitutional grounds.
In this case, a company called Seals with Clubs operated an illegal poker site. The owner argued that cryptocurrencies are not recognized by the federal government, and that gambling is social.
Another federal statute, the Travel Act, applies to players who use interstate facilities to engage in unlawful activities. According to the Commerce Clause, Congress has the power to regulate interstate commerce.